Richard Ormond looks back on the making of John Singer Sargent, The Complete Paintings

To celebrate completion of John Singer Sargent: The Complete Paintings, Richard Ormond – Sargent’s great nephew and co-author of the series – shares his thoughts on this milestone achievement.john singer sargent

John Singer Sargent – a Catalogue Raisonné project, by Richard Ormond

john singer sargent

All good things come to an end, and so it is with the John Singer Sargent catalogue. It is thirty-six years since Warren Adelson, the New York-based art dealer, came to see me with a proposition: ‘You will never do the catalogue on your own. Let me help you’. So began a productive collaboration, not without some trials but with a lot of fun on the side. Other members of the team have stayed the course, co-author Elaine Kilmurray, Warren’s co-director Elizabeth Oustinoff, designer Maria Miller, editor Frances Bowles, picture researcher Lisa Bush Hankin, publisher Sally Salvesen and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art who backed us from the start.

‘It has been a privilege to map his work and display his genius’

Deep in some knotty research topic, I have sometimes asked myself, ‘Am I mad to be doing this?’. But I know in my heart that I have to continue, for the sake of the artist and his fans. Trekking in the Rockies to find the exact place where Sargent painted, exploring Venetian canals for a week and crossing the Palestine desert have made it all worthwhile. And so have the many fascinating people met along the way. We first envisaged four volumes, they have grown like Topsy to nine. I blame the artist, he was too productive, but it has been a privilege to map his work and display his genius.

Find out more about the completion of the series in this exclusive interview with Richard Ormond.


To mark this occasion, we are offering a Special Christmas Promotion

20% off any of the volumes in the series, for 1 month only

Use promo code Y1694 on the Yale London website at the checkout stage of your order. Offer on UK orders only. Offer ends 24/12/16


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