Can we ever look at Titian’s paintings the same way again?

Can we ever look at Titian’s paintings the same way again?

With its small supernova of a show, “Titian: Women, Myth & Power,” the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum here scores an art historical coup that institutions many times its size should envy, and audiences, hungry for old master dazzle, can count themselves lucky to see. Yet the same exhibition raises troubling questions about how, in art from the distant past viewed through the lens of the political present, aesthetics and ethics can clash. The show first appeared at the National Gallery in London, moved on to the Museo del Prado in Madrid, and is making its last, and only American stop at the Gardner. At its core is a cycle of six monumental oil paintings of mythological scenes that Titian, who died in Venice in 1576, produced, late in his career, for Spanish king Philip
With its small supernova of a show, “Titian: Women, Myth & Power,” the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum here scores an art historical coup that institutions many times its size should envy, and audiences, hungry for old master dazzle, can count themselves lucky to see. Yet the same exhibition raises troubling questions about how, in art from the distant past viewed through the lens of the political present, aesthetics and ethics can clash. The show first appeared at the National Gallery in London, moved on to the Museo del Prado in Madrid, and is making its last, and only American stop at the Gardner. At its core is a cycle of six monumental oil paintings of mythological scenes that Titian, who died in Venice in 1576, produced, late in his career, for Spanish king Philip