John Pope-Hennessy

(1913—1994) museum director and art historian

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(b London, 13 Dec. 1913; d Florence, 31 Oct. 1994).

British art historian. He was director of the Victoria and Albert Museum, 1967–73; director of the British Museum, 1974–6; and from 1977 to 1987 consultative chairman, department of European paintings, Metropolitan Museum, New York, and professor of fine arts at New York University. His many publications made him perhaps the doyen among English writers in the field of Italian Renaissance art. They include the magisterial An Introduction to Italian Sculpture in three parts (all of which have subsequently appeared in revised editions), Italian Gothic Sculpture (1955), Italian Renaissance Sculpture (1958), and Italian High Renaissance and Baroque Sculpture (1963), an edition of Cellini's Autobiography (1949), and monographs on Giovanni di Paolo (1937), Sassetta (1939), Uccello (1950; rev. 1972), Fra Angelico (1952; rev. 1974), Raphael (1970), Luca della Robbia (1980), Cellini (1985), and Donatello (1993). His autobiography, Learning to Look, was published in 1991. The many honours bestowed on him included the Galileo Galilei Prize (1986), awarded for contributions to Italian culture.

Subjects: Art — Literary Studies (20th Century onwards).

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