Jarves, James Jackson (järˈvĭs) [key], 1818–88, American art critic and art collector, b. Boston. He spent some years in Honolulu, where he founded and edited a weekly newspaper, the Polynesia ; it became the official organ of the Hawaiian government. Jarves settled in Florence in 1852 and served (1880–82) as U.S. vice consul. His writings include History of the Hawaiian or Sandwich Islands (1843), several European travel books, and a number of works on art. Through his writings and exhibitions of his early Italian paintings, he did much to influence the artistic taste of the American public. His collection of paintings is at the Yale School of Fine Arts and at the Cleveland Museum of Art; the Metropolitan Museum has his collection of Venetian glass.
See catalogs of his collections by R. Sturgis, Jr. (1868), O. Sirén (1916), and S. Rubinstein (1917); biography by F. Steegmuller (1951).
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