A Tale of Two Monkeys: Adventures in the Art World (Hardcover)
The memoirs of Anthony Speelman, the doyen of English art dealers specializing in Dutch Golden Age art.
In this remarkable and handsomely illustrated memoir, Anthony Speelman offers fascinating insights into the often-secretive world of the Dutch masters, covering a lifetime of dealing in fine art at the very highest level. Throughout his long career, Speelman has sold paintings to many of the world’s greatest collectors—including Norton Simon, Paul Mellon, Baron Thyssen, Harold Samuel, Charles Clore, and the Wrightsmans in New York—along with world-renowned museums such as the Getty, the Louvre, and the National Gallery, London, among many others. In intriguing tales that are sometimes shocking and always interesting, he shares stories of his encounters with these eminent bodies in a lighthearted style. Other chapters go beyond the world of fine art to detail Speelman’s interest in gastronomy, his thrilling adventures in the world of horseracing, and his travels to California, New York, and Paris.
Beautifully illustrated with examples of the many works that have passed through the author’s hands, the wide range of illustrations is not limited to Dutch art and includes works by Canaletto, Stubbs, Raphael, Tiepolo, Melendez, and other Old Masters. Lighthearted and engaging, the book will appeal to dealers, collectors, and any would-be collectors eager for a glimpse behind the curtain.
About the Author
Anthony Speelman is a London-based art dealer and chairman of the vetting committee of the annual Masterpiece London Art Fair.
"Decades of dealing in paintings from the Dutch Golden Age has left Speelman with a fund of anecdotes about the Old Masters trade, as well as a wealth of insights about the world's greatest private collectors and its most important public museums."
"The joy Speelman expresses in connecting collector with work is unmistakable. Handsomely produced, this title deserves a place in every art library."
— The New Criterion