Perseus Rescuing Andromeda by Cavaliere D'Arpino, painted on lapis lazuli

Paintings Made of Stone

Renaissance painters incorporated the inherent qualities of stone to produce works of art that revealed the beauty of nature and hand of God.
Women from various districts are seen near cut-outs of India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a rally held by Modi on December 21, 2021 in Allahabad, India.

Why Narendra Modi Presents Himself as a Guru

Drawing on traditions of monastic power, Modi’s party is trying to promote the image of India as a vishwaguru, or teacher to the world.
An anatomical machine of Prince Raimondo di Sangro

The Anatomical Machines of Naples’ Alchemist Prince

Rumor had it that these machines were once the Prince’s servants, whom he murdered and transformed into anatomical displays. Scholars showed otherwise.
A painting of Strawberry Hill from the Southeast by Paul Sandby

Is This a Gay House?

The British aristocrat Horace Walpole's villa Strawberry Hill was said to be evidence of his "degeneracy."
The Visit, 1746, Pietro Longhi

Socially Sanctioned Love Triangles of Romantic-Era Italy

Eighteenth-century Italian noblewomen had one indispensable accessory: an extramarital lover.

18th-Century Lovers Exchanged Portraits of Their Eyes

The miniature paintings celebrated and commemorated love at a time when public expressions of affection were uncouth.
Equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius in Rome, Italy

Why Are Cities Filled with Metal Men on Horseback?

The original inspiration for the now-ubiquitous equestrian statue, a classical bronze of Emperor Marcus Aurelius, was almost melted down and lost forever.
Rustam captures the King of Mâzandarân and takes him before the tent of Kay Kâ'ûs.

The Movable Tent Cities of the Ottoman Empire

The most lavish among them were festooned with colorful appliqué and brightened with gilded leather.
Allegorical Groups Representing the Four Continents: America by Francesco Bertos

These Gravity-Defying Sculptures Provoked Accusations of Demonic Possession

Demons and artists, it seems, pull from the same bag of tricks. They take ordinary matter and transform it into something more wondrous, more terrifying.
Notre-Dame, 1881

Recreating Notre Dame

The famous Paris cathedral was built over many centuries, reflecting the growth and evolution of Paris itself.