Who Discovered the Pompeians?

During excavations on the archaeological site of Pompeii in 1865, they thought to get a cast from the impression left in ashes by a wood door. From that day there were several others tempted like this but all with poor results. Other attempts were made before in 1831 in order to take human plaster...

The True Story of Smugglerius

On 12 April 1776, a man named James Langar was hanged at Tyburn by order of the Court of Criminal known as the Old Bailey. His body was used by Sir William Hunter, first Professor of Anatomy at the Royal Academy of Art Schools in London to make an anatomical model for study of the...

Tale of an hard work behind the scenes of Ben Hur

I believe that all of you knows the blockbuster film Ben Hur directed by William Wiler in 1959 and starring Charlton Heston, Stephen Boyd, Haya Harareet, Hugh Griffith, Martha Scott, Sam Jaffe, and many others. I wonder though, how many have ever imagined the huge work that was necessary for the making of the...

the Story of a Famous Ecorché

During his stay at the  Académie de France in Rome from 1764 to 1768 Jean Antoine Houdon, modeled on San Bruno and SanGiovanni Battista in the church of Santa Maria degli Angelicommissioned by Dom. Andrè Le Masson procurateur general of the Carthusian order of frairs.  In 1767 Houdon installed the colossus marble of San Bruno in...

The Genius and his Victory

During my recent business trip to the Metropolitan Museum of  Art in New York I had the pleasure of admiring the reconstruction of the House Francis W. Little living room in Wayzata, Minnesota by the american architect Frank Lloyd Wright (June 8, 1867 – April 9, 1959). The 'genius' of the early...

The Most Famous Unknown Girl

La Belle Italienne is the name given to the plaster mask of a pretty young girl who became popular in Paris andelsewhere by the late 800's until the early decades of the '900. Many artists, writers and photographers, from Man Ray to Albert Camus, who described the calm, slightly smiling woman as a "Drowned...