John Brewer: The American Leonardo

All Library locations will be closed on Monday, September 1, in observance of Labor Day.

Author John Brewer discusses his new book that traces the twisting path of the Hahn La Belle – a painting of famously uncertain origin.
Thursday, February 11, 2010
6:30pm @ Central Library

Author John Brewer discusses his new book The American Leonardo: A Tale of Obsession, Art and Money on Thursday, February 11, at 6:30 p.m. at the Central Library, 14 W. 10th St.

The American Leonardo traces the twisting path of the Hahn La Belle – allegedly the work of Leonardo da Vinci – and illuminates the workings of the 20th century art market and the questions surrounding art attribution.

When Harry Hahn and his French bride arrived in Junction City, Kansas, and attempted to sell the painting in 1919, renowned art dealer Sir Joseph Deveen declared the painting was a fake – according to some reports without ever having seen the canvas. The Hahn’s sued Deveen for slander, setting off a legal battle that would last decades and shine a light on two competing methods of art attribution: the critical eye of the connoisseur and the emerging array of scientific and forensic tests.

Copies of The American Leonardo will be available for sale, and Brewer will sign copies purchased during the event.

Admission is free. A 6 p.m. reception precedes the event. Click here to RSVP. Free parking is available in the Library District Parking Garage at 10th & Baltimore.

Listen to the audio