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Chasing Beauty: The Life of Isabella Stewart Gardner

The vivid and masterful story of an American original—creator of one of America’s most stunning museums—whose own life was remade by art.

Isabella Stewart Gardner’s museum, with its plain exterior enfolding an astonishing four-story Italian palazzo, rose from Boston’s Fens at the turn of the twentieth century. Its treasures encompassed not only masterwork paintings but tapestries, rare books, prints, porcelains, and fine furniture—all in evocative, intimately personal arrangements.

An extraordinary achievement of storytelling and scholarship, Chasing Beauty provides compelling insight into the multilayered self-portrait encoded in the museum’s objects and rooms—and delivers the absorbing story of a life every bit as dazzling and haunting. Hardcover, 528 pages.

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