Who Says? Can We Trust The Experts On Good And Bad In Art?

Wed 5th October 2011 at 2pm

David Phillips

studied History at Oxford, and from 1968-82 worked for Nottingham Castle Museum. From 1982-98, he was a lecturer in Museum Studies and Art History at the University of Manchester. He has published articles and books on his specialisms and lectured to university audiences and community groups at the British and Ashmolean museums.

Art critics and experts are often hilariously lampooned, and in this lecture we focus on the bafflingly mysterious Polish Rider in the Frick to evaluate a decades-long project to settle just which paintings Rembrandt did. That’s ended up as much a study of the trickiness of attribution as of Rembrandt. Right now, world Leonardo authority Martin Kemp is utterly convinced he has discovered a new work by the master – but many specialists beg to differ. We review a number of controversies, and feel the fury of judges listening to connoisseurial assertions, when questions of quality come to court. But the minefields facing experts need not deter the rest of us from making artistic judgments justbased on life experience we all have.


Below are photos of this lecture