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22 thoughts on “Contact

  1. Hello Dr. Shafe, I like your art history lectures very much. I have an interesting question about Anthony van Dyck’s paintings of Samson and Delilah. He painted two versions of the same theme in 1620 (age19) and 1630(age29). The 1620’s painting was heavily inspired by his tutor Rubens’s version of the same subject . The Deliah he depicted was a shallow and superficial courtesan. However, the painting of the 1630’s version was complete different, he painted them with inseparation of amorous love and the brutal betrayal. It seems like he understood the love and hate are inseparable . My question is : Why he painted the second version of the Samson and Delilah in 1630 ? Was it beacuse he had experienced love by the age of 29 and had a new opinion of the story of Samson and Delilah ? I can hardly find any of his life stories during that period of time, I only know he had a lover called Margaret Lemon, don’t know if it was her that inspired him for the painting of 1630. I know there is no certain answer for this question, I’d like to hear your opinion about it, anything you would like to share with me would be great. I apperciate it very much !

  2. dear professor,
    we´re currently restoring an early 20th century building depicting a satyr and a satyress on its main porch (in a position where Atlantes would be common). Since this female representation is rare, we wonder what was the architect´s intention on including this rare figures.
    Thanks for the attention,

    W Unes
    PS: We coulg forward some pictures, shall you be willing to address this issue

    • I am cutting the number of lectures and tours I do to the minimum but I hope my notes encourage others to give talks and tours on this fascinating architect and set designer.

  3. Dear Laurence

    I could really do with your help on some images I have recieved from a relative, I’ve taken them to a local auctioneer and they are not sure what they are. If there is a way in which you could contact me I’d be very greatful

    Cheers Adam

  4. Dear Laurence

    I have been looking at the Miniature of the 9th Earl of Northumberland and think I may have uncovered an additional symbol – in addition to those you identify in your article. I would appreciate your thoughts and views on this and how the miniature may inform a new architectural proposal.

    Best wishes


    • Richard,
      I am sure there are many aspects of the miniature that I have overlooked. What is the additional symbol you have in mind?


      • Dear Laurence

        If you could email me at the above address then I will send you an annotated image which shows the philosopher’s stone.

        Best wishes


  5. Dear Dr. Shafe; I’ve enjoyed your Art History website and am interested to find out if you’ve published your notes on the Introduction to Modern Art: New York School presentation as yet. Obviously you’ve chosen a number of slides to feature in whatever format the talk/lectures are, but is it possible to obtain the written manuscript?
    Thank you very much,
    P. McEwen

    • I have added my notes to the slides which were from a lecture I attended in 2004. The lecture was given by Dr Gavin Parkinson who, at the time, was at Birkbeck College, University of London. I am not currently lecturing on this area so I will not be extending the notes. Over the next twelve months I am working on a lecture series titled ‘300 Years of British Art: 1500 to 1800’.


  6. Dear Laurence,
    I am currently writing an MA History dissertation which is looking into the way in which the commemoration of women changed in England c.1400 – c.1600 and came across your site whilst looking at Torrigiano’s work at Westminster Abbey. This abstract; ‘Some years ago art historians criticized Torrigiano for his conservative style but by examining such documents we can see that he was simply following the contractual agreement. At the time an artist was regarded as an artisan or simply as a technician’ from this part of your website ‘’ came up in my search. I just wondered if you could possibly point me in the right direction concerning 1. which art historians held/published this point of view and 2. which documents (aside from the contract for Margaret Beaufort’s tomb) support the statement that Torrigiano was following contractual agreement, and where can I find these?
    It would be of great help to me as I am not as familiar with the art history world as I am the history one!
    Many Thanks,

    • I also forgot to mention, I will of course credit your site in my work too, I just wanted to source the original criteria and read it for myself to further my research.

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