Anita Rogers Gallery is thrilled to introduce the work of Tristan Barlow and Hans Neleman in an upcoming two-person exhibition. The show, on view from January 10 through February 11, 2017 at 77 Mercer Street #2N, New York, will include original oil paintings from Barlow and mixed media assemblages from Neleman. Both artists embrace bold motifs, strong colors and a sense of the paradoxical, whether it be in the playful yet dark tone of the works, the frenetic yet balanced compositions or the elegant yet provocative nature of the forms.
By JOSEPH BERGER JAN. 1, 2017
It is perhaps the most significant artifact documenting the arrival of Jews in the New World: a small, tattered 16th-century manuscript written in an almost microscopic hand by Luis de Carvajal the Younger, the man whose life and pain it chronicled.
Until 1932, the 180-page booklet by de Carvajal, a secret Jew who was burned at the stake by the Inquisition in Spain’s colony of Mexico, resided in that country’s National Archives.
Then it vanished. The theft transformed the manuscript into an object of obsession, a kind of Maltese Falcon, for a coterie of Inquisition scholars and rare-book collectors. Almost nothing was heard about the document for more than 80 years — until it showed up 13 months ago at a London auction house. The manuscript was on sale for $1,500, because the house had little sense of its value.
But last year the relic caught the eye of a prominent collector of Judaica, Leonard Milberg, when it showed up for resale at the Swann Galleries in Manhattan. It was now priced at more than 50 times what it had sold for just a few months earlier in England. Mr. Milberg consulted a variety of experts, who told him it might be the actual manuscript, and worth as much as $500,000. They also warned him to be careful — the original had been reported stolen.
After a swirl of activity unleashed by Mr. Milberg’s inquiries, and financed by his generosity, the manuscript will be returning to the Mexican archives in March. For now, as part of the arrangement Mr. Milberg coordinated, the manuscript is on display through March 12 at the New-York Historical Society, part of an exhibition depicting the experience of the first Jews in North and South America.
“It is the earliest surviving personal narrative by a New World Jew,” said David Szewczyk, an expert in ancient books of the Americas, “and the earliest surviving worship manuscript and account of coming to the New World.”
The manuscript’s odyssey — from its creation in Mexico to its recent arrival in Manhattan — is a tale laced with intrigue.
De Carvajal was a Jew who posed as Catholic in New Spain, now Mexico, during a period when the Inquisition ruthlessly persecuted heretics and false converts with deportation, imprisonment, torture and grisly public executions.
De Carvajal, a trader, was arrested around 1590 as a proselytizing Jew and, while in prison, began writing a sometimes messianic memoir, the “Memorias,” on pages roughly 4 inches by 3 inches. In it, he called himself Joseph Lumbroso — Joseph the Enlightened. It begins: “Saved from terrible dangers by the Lord, I, Joseph Lumbroso of the Hebrew nation and of the pilgrims to the West Indies in appreciation of the mercies received from the hands of the Highest, address myself to all, who believe in the Holy of Holies and who hope for great mercies.”
The memoir tells how he learned from his father that he was Jewish, circumcised himself with an old pair of scissors, secretly embraced the faith and persuaded siblings to embrace it.
He was freed for a time — possibly so that the authorities could track his contacts with other secret Jews — and finished his autobiography, stitching it together with a set of prayers, the Ten Commandments and 13 principles of the Jewish philosopher Maimonides. Scholars believe he made it miniature so he could conceal it inside a coat or pocket. In 1596, after having been found guilty again of observing Jewish practices, he was burned at the stake. He was 30.
His manuscript, discovered in his clothing, eventually ended up in the National Archives, which by the 1930s was located in a building adjacent to the presidential palace.
How the book disappeared remains a matter of conjecture. At the time, at least three scholars were delving into the atlas-size volumes of the Inquisition’s proceedings against de Carvajal. They have all been suspects of one kind or another over the years. One of them, a historian on the archives staff who was writing a book on the de Carvajal family, accused a rival of the theft. The rival, Jacob Nachbin, a Yiddish-speaking Polish and Jewish history professor who had taught at Northwestern University in Illinois and what is now New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, spent roughly three months in jail but was released for insufficient evidence. Some scholars think his accuser may have actually been guilty.
The whereabouts of the manuscript remained a mystery until its emergence in London. One scholar, Rabbi Martin A. Cohen of Hebrew Union College in New York, said in an interview that he believes he read the manuscript at the Mexican archives in the 1950s while doing research for “The Martyr,” a 1973 book on de Carvajal. Other scholars think it more likely that what he saw was a transcription.
In London in December 2015, Bloomsbury Auctions listed the de Carvajal materials in its catalog as “three small devotional manuscripts.” The catalog did not mention de Carvajal. It described the manuscript as a 17th-or 18th-century work and said it had come “from the library of a Michigan family, and in their possession for several decades.” Timothy Bolton, Bloomsbury’s Western manuscripts chief, said he could not identify the family because “one of the fundamental cornerstones of the auction world is our client’s privacy.”
The subsequent Bloomsbury buyer, described by a Swann official only as a rare-book dealer, brought the manuscript to Swann, which priced it at $50,000 to $75,000. Though some experts value it closer to $500,000, Swann thought the de Carvajal manuscript to be a transcript — a very old copy — not the original in de Carvajal’s hand, and listed it as such in its catalog.
That’s where it was spotted last summer by Mr. Milberg, 85, the Flatbush, Brooklyn-reared owner of a Manhattan commercial finance company who collects Judaica and Irish poetry. He decided to buy the manuscript “copy” and include it in the planned exhibition at the New-York Historical Society, which was to include many pieces from his Judaica collection. Then he was going to donate it to Princeton University, his alma mater.
But experts he consulted, like Ilan Stavans, a professor of Latin American culture at Amherst College, convinced him that it was both authentic and stolen. (One reason Mr. Milberg believes it to be the original: No transcriber, he said, would have bothered to make the handwriting so tiny.)
Swann ultimately pulled the manuscript from the sale, and Mexican curators confirmed its authenticity.
Rick Stattler, head of Swann’s rare-book department, said that when he realized he had de Carvajal’s original, “I actually had the hairs go up on my arm.”
Mr. Milberg told Diego Gómez Pickering, Mexico’s consul-general in New York, that he would try to arrange a return of the manuscript. But he needed a few months so that it could be displayed in New York. Mr. Gómez Pickering agreed.
To avoid any argument over rightful possession, Mr. Milberg agreed to pay Swann’s consignor $10,000 — still a tidy profit. Swann got $2,500 for its trouble from Mr. Milberg. And a dealer who helped him coordinate the transactions, William Reese, received $25,000 for his labors.
Mr. Milberg also insisted that digital copies be made for Princeton and the Spanish-Portuguese Synagogue in Manhattan. He said that highlighting such objects is his way of “getting back at anti-Semitism.”
“I wanted to show that Jews were part of the fabric of life in the New World,” he said. “This book was written before the Pilgrims arrived.”
Despite the show’s title, an alluring softness pervades George Negroponte’s new work in his exhibition, “Gravel Road,” at Anita Rogers Gallery in Soho through January 7. Shaped bits and pieces of cardboard serve as his support. Porous and absorbent as this material is by nature, the deep tan of the cardboard radiates a muted, soothing light recalling the earthen grounds of Vuillard, like whom the work is understated, inviting, intimate. Warmth of ground is balanced, in Negroponte, by a predominately cool palette, though occasionally a fire engine red blasts out from his deep browns, rich greens, blacks and whites. The irregularities of these disassembled boxes makes unpredictability a given. The rounded, overlapping, disk-like forms in the exhibition’s title work, for instance, may suggest stacked vessels, but they find themselves in an interior space rather than the cosmos. As in earlier work, Negroponte will occasionally pair smaller pieces in intriguing combinations. The ensuing dialogue has the animated tension of children sizing each other up in the playground.
George Negroponte comes to making art with a pure love of painting. His aim has never been to turn over the apple cart, or in Al Held’s words, reinvent the wheel. As such, he has been compelled to paint his way through various modes and approaches, learning and searching for authenticity and resonance.
In his current show [at Anita Rogers Gallery]… Negroponte uses shaped bits and pieces of cardboard as his support. The work feels softer than the previous body of work as the material itself is porous and absorbent in nature and the deep tan color of the cardboard radiates a warm muted soothing light, in a way similar to Vuillard who often used earth colored grounds to inform and unify the colors in his composition. Like Vuillard the work tends to be understated, approachable and intimate. These works are small, all under 20” in height, on the longer side. The warmth of the ground is balanced by a predominately cool palette, though occasionally he uses a hard fire engine red and there are also whites, deep browns, rich greens, and black as well. As in his last show Negroponte occasionally uses pairings of smaller pieces in combination. The dialogue is intriguing…
Having worked with young people for decades, here are things a university president says parents should be teaching kids.
By Christina DesMarais for Inc.com
All good parents want their children to succeed, but some kids do better than others after leaving the nest. Paula Wallace, president and founder of the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), has some thoughts on the topic. With locations in Savannah and Atlanta in Georgia, Hong Kong, and Lacoste, France, she has spent four decades working with young people from around the world. Here’s her advice on what parents can do to help their kids succeed in life.
Read the list on British American Household Staffing’s blog: http://bahs.com/news/detail/4-things-the-most-successful-young-adults-learn-from-their-parents
The collaged sculptures of George Negroponte—who admires “the stoic and the splendidly solemn”—are on view at Anita Rogers Gallery.
By Nicola J Rowley for Huffpost Parents
There I was, sat on a packed Piccadilly tube train at the height of rush hour. All of a sudden as I looked down, I saw an A4 brown envelope wedged between my leg and the glass partition. It contained what looked like important documents. On closer inspection, there were some travel papers including flight tickets. The person who had just vacated the seat, was now long gone but their envelope remained behind. I turned to the passenger next to me and queried what they thought should be done?
Read the full post on British American Household Staffing’s website: http://bahs.com/news/detail/why-we-must-lead-by-example-and-inspire-children-to-be-kind-to-others
By Tom Willis via Lifehack
Young children grow up fast. The many stages of development they pass through from birth to early school years requires a lot of keeping up and finding new ways to stimulate their curiosity and satisfy their daily needs. As a parent, this duty is a tough but rewarding task. Your child will benefit greatly from the toys and tools within their immediate environment, which, in addition to your emotional support, will help shape their development.
Check out this guide of great toy ideas for children from Tom Willis via Lifehack on British American Household Staffing’s blog: http://bahs.com/news/detail/parenting-tips-toys-and-educational-tools-for-children-aged-0-5
(By Beth Hedrick, Source: Lifehack)
Children as young as 6 months old greatly benefit from being read to. You may not realize your baby is taking it all in as you talk about the pictures on each page, turn each page as they sit in your lap, and read the text to them, but they undeniably are soaking it all in. This is, in fact, a critical stage in your child’s reading development.
Read the full post on British American Household Staffing’s blog: http://bahs.com/news/detail/from-babies-to-small-children-the-importance-of-reading-exposure
After working with fertility clients for over a decade, I’ve learned that fertility depends on much more than age, hormone levels, or ovulation windows. Much of what is happening in conception is beyond our mental understanding and falls into the realm of the spirit. By using the tools of the spiritual, we can promote and nourish our fertility. – Dr. Julie Von
Read British American Household Staffing’s latest blog post on Spirituality & Fertility: