JSS Virtual Gallery

by F.

Sargent was a maniacal worker, completing 2,500 paintings during his life, according to one biography. Much of his work has been digitized and can be viewed on-line—at the MFA Boston and at Harvard. However, by far the best way to see the entire scope of his work is the JSS Virtual Gallery, found here.

This is an amazing resource. Amazing. It could be one of the best art sites on the web. Could. Unfortunately, one of the first things you notice when visiting the virtual gallery is the poor graphic design—someone with the necessary skills needs desperately to volunteer to clean it up. The look of the site is made worse by the contrasting beauty of its subject matter.

But here’s the point: don’t let that put you off. The first time I visited thi site, I though, “Oh. Another cheeseball website—pass” and moved on. Only when I came back much later did I see the truth: the content is excellent.