Read De Rafaël affaire by Iain Pears Free Online
Book Title: De Rafaël affaire|
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Reader ratings: 3.1
The author of the book: Iain Pears
Date of issue: 2002
ISBN 13: 9789076341392
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 3.76 MB
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”But she was most struck by the reaction from the audience. They were not admiring the delicacy of the brush strokes, the masterly application of shading or the subtleties of the composition, that was certain. They were ogling. Not a usual reaction for connoisseurs. She herself was caught up in the enthusiasm. The picture, both in its history and subject, was extraordinarily romantic. This most beautiful woman, nearly half a millennium old, had been lost for nearly three hundred years. It could hardly fail to capture the imagination.”
She was made famous by being the subject of a painting by the celebrated artist Raphael...or was she? A woman still beautiful even in a modern sense with fine lines and none of the heft of the Madonnas common to that period.
Portrait of a Woman (1507) Raphael.
Jonathan Argyll after doing his usual slap dash, but generally brilliant research was arrested poking around a church. He was looking for evidence that a hidden Raphael existed. Through some deft behind the scenes maneuverings the art in question lands in the hands of a famous; and yet, slightly odorous art dealer Edward Brynes. If Will Brynes were a fictional character instead of a great reviewer on GR Edward would most assuredly be his Uncle.
Argyll is left sitting on a back bench wondering how he brought the painting to everyone’s attention, but somehow has been left out of any compensation. He is an academic and totally unsuited to survive even the dipping of a toe in the turbulent waters of high finance. The Italian government dismayed at all the Italian art that continues to be sold to the United States, to Japan, and to Britain decides that it will pay any price to keep this Raphael from leaving the country.
Italy wins or do they lose?
Argyll after more indepth research realizes that he may have made a mistake. Byrnes, out of some sort of guilt or possibly with the intent to keep an eye on Argyll offers him a much needed scholarship that allows him the means to return to Italy.
Circumstances quickly spin out of control and Argyll finds himself being pushed to do proper research by the lovely Flavia di Stefano, a member of the Italian Art Theft Squad. She, unfortunately, sees the hapless Argyll as more of an amusing friend than as a potential lover.
She might even think he is cute. Which as any man knows once he is labelled as such that it is all over. He has no chance of ever being seen as the masculine, knee trembling, paragon of sexual desire.
Iain Pears includes some rather interesting explanations about how art forgery is accomplished. A brilliant forgery is in many ways more of a work of art than the original. An expert forger really has to be the master of many crafts. If he is the best no one will ever know his name. The speculation of what is real and what is fake of the thousands (millions) of pieces of very important art hanging in famous museums all over the world is interesting to contemplate. Luckily I do not have a professional eye that has to ponder the probabilities. I can enjoy a fake as much as an original. I’ve already ordered book two in the series. I hear the books only continue to get better as Pears settles into the characters he has created. Maybe Flavia will learn to see Jonathan as something more than just cute.
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Read information about the authorIain Pears is an English art historian, novelist and journalist. He was educated at Warwick School, Warwick, Wadham College and Wolfson College, Oxford. Before writing, he worked as a reporter for the BBC, Channel 4 (UK) and ZDF (Germany) and correspondent for Reuters from 1982 to 1990 in Italy, France, UK and US. In 1987 he became a Getty Fellow in the Arts and Humanities at Yale University. His well-known novel series features Jonathan Argyll, art historian, though international fame first arrived with his best selling book An Instance of the Fingerpost (1998), which was translated into several languages. Pears currently lives with his wife and children in Oxford.
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