Hugh Blaker and the Old MastersThe connoisseurship of the man who discovered the Isleworth Mona Lisa

Authors Organisations
Type Chapter
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLeonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa
Subtitle of host publicationNew Perspectives
EditorsJean-Pierre Isbouts
Place of PublicationSanta Barbara
PublisherFielding University Press
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)9780986393037
Publication statusPublished - 22 Mar 2019
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This essay provides access to and context for the little-known activities of the early-twentieth century art dealer-collector Hugh Blaker and the influence he sought to exert on art history through his discovery of what he declared to be an earlier version, not a copy, of Leonardo’s Mona Lisa, executed in part by the Master himself. Based on original research, the argument establishes a profile of Blaker as a promoter of modernism and dealer in Old Masters whose connoisseurship was rooted in a regret that he lacked the single-mindedness of vision that could have enabled him to succeed as an artist.