The Frick and Modernism, Perfect Together

Room 24: Four grand panels of Fragonard’s series The Progress of Love are shown together at Frick Madison in a gallery illuminated by one of Marcel Breuer’s trapezoidal windows. This view shows two of the 1771–72 paintings, with two later overdoors visible in the next gallery. (The Frick Collection. Photo: Joe Coscia)
Good architecture, good art, good curators … That’s magic.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE D oes great art have an aura? I’m a frosty Yankee, but I’m an art historian, too, and not beyond believing in magic. I’ve yet to see a painting glow, aside from having inspired lighting, but many of the works on the walls at the new Frick on Madison Avenue do more than that. They command my attention. The portraits especially are alive and insistent in a way I never experienced them at the mansion on 70th Street. Now set against gray walls, with bluestone floors, sometimes parquet, at their feet, and suspended, concrete grid ceilings above them, and all clutter

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