The Ivory Tower of Tearlessness

I can't cry over Giovanni Bellini's "St. Francis in the Desert," a painting that held me in thrall as a teenager and brought me closest to tears, or for that matter any other painting. I have joined the ranks of the tearless. Like other art historians, I am fascinated by the pictures I study, but I don't let them upset my mental balance. It's all right for a picture to be challenging, but I don't think of pictures as dangerous: When I look at an image, it doesn't occur to me that it might