- The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art to show Edvard Munch:Graphic Works
- Unique Antiques to be auctioned April 14-15 at Don Presley's California gallery
- Bernarducci Meisel Gallery to feature Robert Neffson and Park Hyung Jin
- Tate Modern to present first substantial UK survey of Damien Hirst
- The International Poster Gallery to show “Titans of the Sea ~ Posters from the Golden Age of Ocean Liners”
- The National Gallery of Victoria to show Major Retrospective of Fred Williams
- Avant-Garde Applied (1890–1950) opens at the Juan March Foundation
- Smithsonian's National Air & Space Museum receives the Buzz Lightyear flown in space
- "Frans Hals in the Metropolitan Museum" Showcases the Artist's Work & Influence
- The Art Gallery of Ontario Shows Robert Motherwell Drawings
- Whitney Museum Announces First Major U.S. Retrospective of the Work of Paul Thek
- National Gallery Announces Exhibition of Fakes, Mistakes and Discoveries
- Delaware Art Museum presents Fifty Works for The First State
- The Deichtorhallen Shows Works from the Collections of Thomas Olbricht & Harald Falckenberg
- Sotheby's NY Auction of American Paintings, Drawings & Sculpture to Feature George Catlin, Edward Hopper & Winslow Homer
- Klemens Gasser & Tanja Grunert present Zefrey Throwell Ocularpation: Wall Street
- Provincetown Art Association & Museum (PAAM) to Present a Weekend With Walton Ford
- DePaul University Art Museum to Become Interactive Art Studio
- The Pallant House Gallery Presents the First Major Show of Edward Burra for Over 25 Years
- This Week in Review in Art Knowledge News
Posted: 31 Mar 2012 01:00 AM PDT
Edinburgh.- The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art is proud to present "Edvard Munch: Graphic Works From the Gundersen Collection", on view at the museum from April 7th through September 23rd. This exhibition will be the first time that this outstanding private collection of lithographs and woodcuts by the celebrated Norwegian artist Edvard Munch will be shown in the UK. The exhibition will feature over fifty of Munch's most important prints including a number of unique, hand-coloured impressions by the artist, among them an extraordinary version of the world-famous "The Scream". This rare work is one of only two hand-coloured versions of the iconic print – the other is held in the Munch Museum, Oslo.
Pål Georg Gundersen was inspired to build his collection following his encounter with the artist's painting "The Sick Child" in the National Gallery of Norway and several impressions of the related print will be included in the show in Edinburgh. By focusing on prints, the Gundersen collection introduces the intensity and directness of Munch's work and provides an insight into his pioneering exploration of universal concerns that made him one of the most influential artists of his day.Graphic Works from The Gundersen Collection draws out the themes of love, human relationships, death, melancholy and anxiety that preoccupied Munch throughout his career. Through multiple versions of many of the images, the exhibition investigates Munch's rigorous experimentation as he revisited and reworked subjects to heighten their emotive impact and to explore colour, texture and techniques. This unique collection shows the working processes behind some of the most startling and iconic images of the late 19th and early 20th century. For example, visitors will be able to compare three different versions of "Madonna" and five examples of "Vampire II". Edvard Munch was born in Norway in 1863.
Many of the artist's most poignant and arresting pieces are the prints he made throughout his long career, and these works express both Munch's technical mastery and artistic vision. Print-making appealed to Munch for the opportunity they gave in disseminating his images to a wider public, and he was innovative in the different processes and methods that he employed to create such works. As well as frequently printing his own subjects, Munch also worked with master printers in Paris and Berlin, where he spent much of his time over the turn of the 20th century and where his work was regularly exhibited. The exhibition will be supplemented with additional prints by Munch that are held on long-term loan by the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art from two further private collectors. It will also feature a special display focusing on the legacy of the artist's first solo exhibition in the UK, staged in Edinburgh in 1931, that will explore how Munch's work has been experienced and received in Scotland. Works by other artists from the Gallery's permanent collection will be shown on the ground floor at Modern Two, in displays introducing the European context in which Munch was active and highly influential, particularly in the realms of Symbolism and Expressionism.
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, holds the national collection of modern art. When opened in 1960, the collection was held in Inverleith House, at the Royal Botanic Gardens. In 1980 it moved to its current home: a Neo Classical building in the west of Edinburgh, near the Water of Leith, built in 1825-1828 by William Burn for John Watson's Hospital, a school now incorporated in George Watson's College. The Sculpture garden to the front of the building contains work by Henry Moore, Rachel Whiteread, Tony Cragg and Barbara Hepworth. In 2002 the front lawn was converted into the giant "Landform" sculpture by Charles Jencks, in collaboration with Terry Farrell and Duncan Whatmore of Terry Farrell and Partners. The sculpture is said to be inspired by chaos theory or Seurat's La Grand Jatte. In 2004 the gallery won the £100,000 Gulbenkian Prize for the Landform. In 2005 with the help of the Art Fund, the gallery added a significant selection of 20 monoprint drawings by leading British artist Tracey Emin to their collection, called the Family Suite (1994) displaying the "archetypal themes in Emin's art: sex, her family, her abortions, and Margate". These works will be displayed from August 2008 at the gallery as part of a major solo show by Emin which has been called the Summer Blockbuster exhibition. The collection includes work by Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Piet Mondrian, Ben Nicholson, Henri Matisse, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, The Scottish Colourists, Peter Howson, Levannah Harris, Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, Boyle Family and Douglas Gordon. Due to space constraints, the work that is displayed is often rotated. The gallery also holds temporary exhibitions. Surrealist and Dada art, as well as work by Eduardo Paolozzi are kept at the adjacent Dean Gallery. The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art is one of the museums which comprise the National Galleries of Scotland. Visit the museums' website at ... http://www.nationalgalleries.org
Posted: 31 Mar 2012 12:55 AM PDT
ORANGE, CA.- Preparations are well under way for an April 14-15 auction of premium-quality estate antiques and art to be held at Don Presley's Southern California gallery. Every corner and aisle is brimming with decorative pieces of old gold, soft silver, rouge marble and jade – key inclusions from among the 1,000+ lots selected for the two-day event. "We have a great mix in this sale, most of which comes from upscale estates," said auctioneer Don Presley. "Imagine the fanciest European antique shop you ever walked into, and that will give you an idea of what awaits bidders in this sale. I think even the most sophisticated buyer would agree that many of the objects that came from Beverly Hills and Newport Beach consignors are fit for royalty." View the catalog at www.LiveAuctioneers.com or on the Presley website at www.donpresleyauction.com.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 10:17 PM PDT
New York City.- The Bernarducci Meisel Gallery is pleased to present two new exhibitions opening in April. "Robert Neffson: Urban Landscapes" and "Park Hyung Jin: Doll Face - Deconstructing the Asian Idol" both open on April 5th and will remain on view through April 28th. Robert Neffson's exhibition will include his recent oil representation of New York City, London, Paris, and Venice and show how Neffson's dichotomy of art and life create his own personal interpretation of reality. Park Hyung Jin's contemporary photorealist paintings challenge the notion of the Asian Idol. Through his execution of perfect planes and angular geometric shapes, Robert Neffson creates wide angle, almost photographic paintings of the great cities of Europe and the U.S. His clean, crisp oil canvases of Manhattan are precise snapshots in time. His 57th Street midtown cross-section displays pedestrians going about their daily lives, architecture, and reflections of light that reveal his innate attention to detail. Neffson's parallel lines depict not only a literal depth of the city but a cultural depth as well.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 09:59 PM PDT
London.- Tate Modern will present the first substantial survey of Damien Hirst's work ever held in the UK. "Damien Hirst" opens on April 4th and will remain on view through September 9th. Hirst is widely regarded as one of the most important artists working today and has created some of the most iconic works in recent history. Sponsored by the Qatar Museums Authority, the exhibition will provide a journey through two decades of Hirst's inventive practice. It will also form part of the London 2012 Festival, the culmination of the Cultural Olympiad. Damien Hirst first came to public attention in London in 1988 when he conceived and curated Freeze, an exhibition of his own work and that of his friends and fellow Goldsmiths College students, staged in a disused London warehouse. In the nearly quarter of a century since that pivotal show, Hirst has become one of the most influential artists of his generation.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 09:26 PM PDT
Boston, Massachusetts.- International Poster Gallery (IPG) proudly presents "Titans of the Sea: Posters from the Golden Age of Ocean Liners", a show and sale of the greatest vintage ocean liner posters, ranging from the birth of the "Floating Palace" in the 1890s to its decline in the Jet Age of the 1960s. The show, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, and the largest of its kind ever offered by a gallery, explores the romance and adventure of ocean travel with 35 extraordinary selections from a recently acquired 200-poster collection. Included are works from major lines like Cunard, White Star, French Line, and many others. A special presentation by ocean liner author and expert Bill Miller will be held on May 3rd at 6:30pm at IPG. "Titans of the Sea" opens on April 16th and will remain on display through June 15th.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 09:04 PM PDT
Melbourne, Victoria. The National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) is proud to present "Fred Williams: Infinite Horizons", on view at the museum from April 7th through July 7th. The exhibition will be the first major retrospective of Fred Williams's work in over 25 years, and will showcase over 100 works from this iconic Australian artist drawn from public and private collections in Australia and overseas, including many works that have never been on public display before. The exhibition highlights Williams's strength as a landscape artist including important oil paintings and luminous gouaches that reveal his distinctive approach, and his ability to poetically convey a feeling of place.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 08:06 PM PDT
MADRID.- The Avant-Garde Applied (1890–1950) opens in Madrid on 30 March at the Fundación Juan March. Featuring almost 700 works ranging from original designs to photomontages, books, magazines, posters, postcards, leaflets, preparatory sketches and models, the exhibition aims to offer an overview of the way that avant-garde ideas were applied to politics and ideology, advertising, the media, architecture, urban and interior design, exhibitions, the theatre, film and photography, from the last decade of the 19th century, in the years just prior to the rise of the avant-garde movements, and throughout the first half of the 20th century. Prior to the formulation of modern aesthetics in the 18th century that brought about a new autonomy of the fine arts, it could be said that all art was originally "design" in the sense of art "applied" to a function. Traditionally, the arts have in fact been "applied" to the widest range of religious, political and social functions from the celebration of the mass to the representation of power, religious and wealth, decoration and leisure. The exhibition will be on show at the Fundación Juan March until 1 July.
Prior to the formulation of modern aesthetics in the 18th century that brought about a new autonomy of the fine arts, it could be said that all art was originally "design" in the sense of art "applied" to a function. Traditionally, the arts have in fact been "applied" to the widest range of religious, political and social functions from the celebration of the mass to the representation of power, religious and wealth, decoration and leisure.
Later on, a number of movements that arose in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, such as the Viennese Succession, the Arts and Crafts movement and above all the early avant-garde movements, from Futurism and Bauhaus to Neo-plasticism, Dada and Constructivism, resulted in an increased emphasis on the new autonomy of art. They also, however, involved a widespread and radical attempt to bring art into all fields of life, not so much in order to depict it or ornament it but rather to transform it and redesign it from the starting point of the ideal of the new. In numerous different parts of the world, but almost at the same time and with the same end, the avant-garde movements aimed to reinstate art and its transformative powers in the political and social realms, domestic life and the world of interior decoration, publishing and the dissemination of ideas. Of course, this socially transformative aspect of art had never totally abandoned these spheres but it had been displaced by the aesthetics of pure art, aestheticism and the concept of "art for art's sake".
The works in the present exhibition have been loaned from two important international collections specialized in design and avant-garde typography, namely the collection of Merrill C. Berman in the USA and that of José María Lafuente in Santander, Spain. Their size and the rigor with which the works in these collections have been selected means that they can be considered of museum quality. The selection of works from the two collections has followed historical criteria but has also adopted a transversal approach to the transformative spirit of the avant-garde movements and to the axis created by the articulation of forms and signs in avant-garde graphic design and the resulting typographical revolution.
The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue published in English and Spanish. It includes the work of 250 artists from 28 countries who together constitute a long list of artists, typographers and avant-garde designers. Among them are pioneers such as Max Bill (1908-1994), Fortunato Depero (1892-1960), Oskar Kokoschka (1886-1980), El Lissitzky (1890-1941), Filippo Tommaso Marinetti (1876-1944), Lászlò Moholy-Nagy (1895-1946), Liubov Popova (1889-1924), Alexander Rodchenko (1891-1956), Kurt Schwitters (1887-1948), Jan Tschichold (1902-1974) and Theo Van Doesburg (1883-1931), to name just a few.
The catalogue includes a text by Manuel Fontán del Junco entitled "Applying the Avant-garde, 1890-1950 (operating instructions)" in which the author details the working process undertaken over the past two years; a fascinating and complex endeavour that has resulted in both the present exhibition and its accompanying catalogue. The author explains the curatorial decisions adopted in the different phases of the project and the conception and organisation of the exhibition. Among its distinctive features has been the close collaboration between the collectors, authors and organisers, a situation that gave rise to a type of "joint curatorship team" responsible for the entire project.
Manuel Fontán del Junco writes that: "This exhibition aims to present – if not exhaustively at least in a highly comprehensive, concentrated and intensive manner – an excellent representation of examples of one aspect of the early avant-garde movements that is generally relegated to a secondary position. This aspect is simultaneously the least 'artistic' (in the modern sense of the word 'art') and the most innovative with regard to the avant-garde legacy. It is, in effect, the historical consequence of the 'application' to a number of different areas within human life and through specific media of a series of ideas (the same ones that filled their manifestoes with proclamations and ambitious, radical slogans) that determined the activity of the historical avant-gardes within the strictly defined terrain of art and the tradition of 'pure' art inherited from the modern tradition."
"The spaces in which the historical avant-garde movements 'applied' their ideas were, in effect, all those that constituted life structured in society: the domestic realm, that of social organisation in all its aspects (notably urbanism and architecture, from private dwellings to public buildings and spaces), politics and ideology, educational institutions, religion, the market, the dissemination of ideas, entertainment, leisure and sport [...], overall, all those areas that, connected together, constituted the network of human life. In order to apply its ideals of social transformation the avant-garde also made use of all media (of representation, communication and dissemination) traditionally considered secondary in relation to the superior, privileged medium of representation constituted by the classic genres of the great arts: painting and sculpture. The media to which the avant-garde fruitfully and innovatively applied itself were the poster and pamphlet, the newspaper and magazine, the book, the photographic image, the fragmented and manipulated photographic image (the photomontage) and the photographic image in movement (film).
That process of 'application' resulted in a vast number of works, a true apotheosis of an interplay of forms and signs to be found in areas previously remote from artistic practice; most strikingly and certainly not by chance, in the realm of written language or text. Alongside their activities within the context of art in the traditional sense, the early avant-gardes 'applied themselves' to all those fields using those media, and this is perhaps the most innovative and determining aspect within the profound conceptual change that came about in the early years of the 20th century in the understanding of art and the meaning of artistic activity that had been inherited from modern art."
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 08:05 PM PDT
WASHINGTON, DC.- Space-ranger Buzz Lightyear, of Toy Story fame, became part of the National Air and Space Museum's popular culture collection today. Launched originally May 31, 2008, aboard the space shuttle Discovery with mission STS-124 and returned on Discovery 15 months later with STS-128, the 12-inch action figure is the longest-serving toy in space. Disney Parks partnered with NASA to send Buzz Lightyear to the International Space Station and create interactive games, educational worksheets and special messages encouraging students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The action figure will go on display in the museum's "Moving Beyond Earth" gallery in the summer.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:40 PM PDT
New York.- The Metropolitan Museum of Art will be hosting "Frans Hals in the Metropolitan Museum" from July 26th until October 10th. The Metropolitan Museum of Art holds the most important collection of paintings in America by the celebrated Dutch artist Frans Hals (1582/83–1666), whose portraits and genre scenes were famous in his lifetime for their immediacy and dazzling brushwork. This exhibition will present thirteen paintings by Hals, including two lent from private collections, and several works by other Netherlandish masters. Several of the Museum's paintings by Hals are famous, especially the early "Merrymakers at Shrovetide" (ca. 1616) and the so-called "Yonker Ramp and His Sweetheart" (1623), both bequeathed to the Museum by Benjamin Altman in 1913. Also included in the exhibition will be two loans from private collections in New York—the small, exquisite "Portrait of Samuel Ampzing" (1630), on copper, and the well-known Fisher Girl (1630–32).
A selection of other Dutch paintings from the Museum's collection and a few engravings will set Hals's work in the context of his native Haarlem and will help clarify how exceptional his animated poses and virtuoso brushwork were at the time. A portrait by Manet, inspired by Hals, will also demonstrate how strongly Hals anticipated Impressionist effects.
Frans Hals was born in 1580 or 1581, in Antwerp. Like many, Hals' family fled during the Fall of Antwerp (1584-1585) from the Spanish Netherlands to Haarlem, where he lived for the remainder of his life. Hals studied under another Flemish-émigré, Karel van Mander (1548–1606), whose Mannerist influence, however, is not noticeably visible in his work. At the age of 27, he became a member of the city's painter's corporation, the Haarlem Guild of Saint Luke, and he started to earn money as an art restorer for the city council. He worked on their large art collection that Karel van Mander had described in his book 'The Painting-Book'. The most notable of these were the works of Geertgen tot Sint Jans, Jan van Scorel and Jan Mostaert, that hung in de St. Jans kerk in Haarlem. The restoration work was paid for by the city of Haarlem, since all religious art was confiscated after the iconoclasm, but the entire collection of paintings was not formally possessed by the city council until 1625, after the city fathers had decided which paintings were suitable for the city hall. The remaining art that was considered too "Roman Catholic" was sold to Cornelis Claesz van Wieringen, a fellow guild member, on the grounds that he remove it from the city. It was under these circumstances that Hals began his career in portraiture, since the market for religious themes had disappeared. The earliest known example of Hals' own art is the 1611, 'Jacobus Zaffius'. His 'breakthrough' came in 1616, with the life-size group portrait, The Banquet of the Officers of the St George Militia Company. His most noted portrait today is the one he made in 1649 of René Descartes.
In 1617, he married Lysbeth Reyniers, the young daughter of a fishmonger that he had taken in to look after his two children from his first marriage. They married in Spaarndam, a small village outside the banns of Haarlem, because she was already 8 months pregnant. Frans Hals was a devoted father and they went on to have eight children. Where Hals contemporaries such as Rembrandt moved their households according to the caprices of patrons, Hals remained in Haarlem and insisted that his customers came to him. According to the Haarlem archives, a militia piece that Hals started in Amsterdam was finished by another painter because Hals refused to paint in Amsterdam, insisting that the militiamen come to Haarlem to sit for their portraits. Although Hals' work was in demand throughout his life, he lived so long that he eventually went out of style as a painter and experienced financial difficulties. In addition to his painting, he continued throughout his life to work as an restorer, art dealer, and art tax expert for the city councilors. His creditors took him to court several times, and to settle his debt with a baker in 1652 he sold his belongings. The inventory of the property seized mentions only three mattresses and bolsters, an armoire, a table and five pictures (these were by himself, his sons, van Mander, and Maarten van Heemskerck).
Left destitute, the municipality gave him an annuity of 200 florins in 1664. At a time when the Dutch nation fought for independence, Hals appeared in the ranks of the schutterij, a military guild. It is possible that he received the privilege as thanks for painting that company 3 times. Hals was also a member of a local chamber of rhetoric, and in 1644 chairman of the Painters Corporation at Haarlem. Frans Hals died in Haarlem in 1666 and was buried in the city's St. Bavo Church. His widow later died obscurely in a hospital after seeking outdoor relief from the guardians of the poor.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art (colloquially known as "The Met") is one of the world's largest and finest art museums, visited by nearly five million people each year. Its collections include almost three million works of art spanning five thousand years of world culture, from prehistory to the present and from every part of the globe. The main building is located on the eastern edge of Central Park, along "Museum Mile" in New York City, but there is also a smaller second location, at "The Cloisters", in Upper Manhattan, which features much of the collection of medieval art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded on April 13, 1870, and first opened on February 20, 1872, housed in a building located at 681 Fifth Avenue in New York City. Under the guidance of its first board of directors, the Met's holdings, initially consisting of a Roman stone sarcophagus and 174 mostly European paintings, quickly outgrew the available space and in 1873 the museum moved from Fifth Avenue to the Douglas Mansion at 128 West 14th Street. However the growing collection required still more space than the mansion could provide, and in 1880, the Metropolitan Museum moved to its current site in Central Park. The original purpose-built Gothic-Revival-style building designed by American architect Calvert Vaux was not well-received. The building's High Victorian Gothic style was already going out of fashion by the time construction was completed, and the president of the Met termed the project "a mistake." Within 20 years, a new architectural plan, incorporating the Vaux building solely as an interior and stripping it of many of its distinctive design elements, was already being executed. Since then the building has been greatly expanded in size and the various additions now completely surround the original structure. The present facade and entrance structure along Fifth Avenue were completed in 1926. The Met measures almost 1/4-mile (400 m) long and with more than 2,000,000 square feet (190,000 m2) of floor space is more than 20 times the size of the original 1880 building. The City of New York owns the museum building and contributes utilities, heat, and some of the cost of guardianship, the collections are owned by a private corporation of Fellows and Benefactors. Visit the museum's website at … http://www.metmuseum.org
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:39 PM PDT
Toronto.- The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) continues to celebrate the Abstract Expressionist movement with an exhibition of drawings by Robert Motherwell. "Painting on Paper: The Drawings of Robert Motherwell", on view through December 11th, showcases 55 works from the AGO collection, which houses one of the largest public holdings of drawings by Motherwell. "This exhibition gives visitors the opportunity to explore the mind and works of Motherwell, an eloquent and passionate Abstract Expressionist," says Matthew Teitelbaum, the AGO's Michael and Sonja Koerner Director and CEO. "Painting on Paper enriches the Abstract Expressionist New York experience at the AGO, giving visitors an in-depth look at the artistic process and evolution of one of the movement's major figures."
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:38 PM PDT
NEW YORK, NY.- An artist who defies classification, Paul Thek (1933-1988), the sculptor, painter, and creator of radical installations who was hailed for his work in the 1960s and early 70s, then nearly eclipsed within his own short lifetime, is the subject of an upcoming retrospective co-organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art and Carnegie Museum of Art. Paul Thek: Diver, A Retrospective, the first major exhibition in the United States to explore the work of the legendary American artist, debuts in the Whitney's fourth-floor Emily Fisher Landau Galleries, from October 21, 2010 to January 9, 2011; it travels to Carnegie Museum of Art, from February 5 to May 1, 2011, and then to the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, from May 22 to September 4, 2011.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:37 PM PDT
LONDON.- The first major exhibition of its kind, Close Examination: Fakes, Mistakes and Discoveries celebrates the remarkable collaboration of scientists, conservators and art historians at the National Gallery. The National Gallery's Scientific Department was founded in 1934 and has become a world leader in the study of the materials and techniques of Western European paintings. Today, the department works ever more closely with curators and conservators to investigate the physical characteristics of works in the collection and to protect paintings for the future. On exhibition 30 June through 12 September.
Modern scientific methods, including infrared imaging, X-ray images, electron microscopy and mass spectrometry can provide fascinating insights into the materials used by artists, studio practice and the ways paintings can change over time.
Close Examination explores this pioneering work by presenting the varied and fascinating stories behind more than 40 paintings in the National Gallery's collection. The exhibition is arranged over six rooms, representing some of the major challenges faced by Gallery experts: Deception and Deceit; Transformations and Modifications; Mistakes; Secrets and Conundrums; Redemption and Recovery; and a special focus room relating to Botticelli. The exhibition features works by Raphael, Dürer, Gossaert, Rembrandt and others.
Room 1: Deception and Deceit
Some paintings in the collection raise complex questions of disputed authorship and authenticity. These range from straightforward period copies to modern forgeries created with the intent to deceive. The lengths forgers will go to deceive is shown in Portrait Group.
This has been identified as the work of an unknown forger of the early 20th century, imitating the style of Renaissance profile portraits. The National Gallery purchased the painting in 1923, believing it to be an authentic work from the 15th century. Scientific analysis exposed the deception, revealing that the artist had used pigments not available before the 19th century. It also emerged that the top layer had been coated with shellac, a natural resin, to simulate the appearance of age.
Room 2: Transformations and Modifications
The Gallery owns several paintings which, over the course of time, have been modified to satisfy changing tastes or interpretations. A provocative Renaissance depiction of a Woman at a Window, probably 1510–30, was dramatically altered in the 19th century to satisfy more restrained Victorian tastes. The girl's hair was changed from blonde to brunette, her expression made more innocent and her bodice rendered less revealing.
In the 1700s, a painting by an unknown German artist, Portrait of Alexander Mornauer, about 1464–88, was altered to resemble a work by the more famous (and highly collectable) artist Hans Holbein. Microscopic examination of paint sample cross-sections revealed that a layer of blue paint had been applied over the original brown background. The style of the sitter's hat was also altered. The changes convinced an 18th-century aristocrat that he was buying an authentic Holbein. The Gallery acquired the painting in 1990 and conservators were able to safely remove these additions to return the painting to its original state.
Room 3: Mistakes
This room focuses on the misattribution of paintings, and examines how scientific analysis and connoisseurship can work together to correct past mistakes. A Man with a Skull was acquired by the Gallery in 1845 as a work by Holbein. Even at the time many experts doubted the attribution. Modern dendrochronological analysis to determine the age of the wood panel support has since shown the painting post-dates Holbein's death in 1543. The exhibition will reveal a new attribution for this painting.
Room 4: Secrets and Conundrums
Despite many triumphs and advances, some paintings remain stubbornly mysterious. For example, it is difficult to exactly recreate the workings of an artist's studio: the materials and techniques used, or the role of assistants. Close Examination highlights some of the important discoveries made in this area; for instance during recent conservation work on The Virgin and Child with Two Angels, about 1475, experts were able to take a closer look and solve a long-standing conundrum over authorship.
Originally acquired as a work by Domenico Ghirlandaio, the painting was later demoted, attributed to the workshop of Andrea del Verrocchio. However, after removing layers of old retouching work, and examining the underdrawing with infrared reflectography, it became clear that Verrocchio himself painted the Virgin, the angel on the left and the landscape in the background, while his assistant, Lorenzo di Credi, painted the angel on the right and the infant Christ.
Verrocchio was one of the finest sculptors of the Renaissance and tutor to both Leonardo da Vinci and Sandro Botticelli, but very few paintings by him have been identified with any certainty. This discovery has made it possible to reassess other works by the artist as well as his legacy as a Renaissance painter.
Other conundrums featured in the exhibition remain tantalizingly unsolved. A Dead Soldier, an atmospheric painting of the 17th century, was once attributed to the Spanish master, Diego Velázquez. This theory has now been discounted, but while the painting is thought to have originated in Italy, the precise identity of the artist remains a mystery.
Room 5: Being Botticelli
At various points in the National Gallery's history, some works were enthusiastically acquired on mistaken attributions to iconic artists. In June 1874 the Gallery purchased two Botticellis – or so it seemed. One of these (Sandro Botticelli, Venus and Mars, about 1485) is now one of the most beloved paintings in the collection.
The other painting (Follower of Sandro Botticelli, An Allegory, probably about 1490–1550) was then thought to be a companion to Venus and Mars. Some even thought it the more desirable of the two. However, this painting was soon discovered to be a pastiche, painted by a follower in the style of the great master. The paintings will be shown side-by-side so that visitors can test their own skills of connoisseurship.
Room 6: Redemption and Recovery
The final room of the exhibition celebrates instances in which the work of great painters has been re-discovered through a combination of scientific analysis, conservation, connoisseurship and art historical research. Until 1991, the whereabouts of Raphael's original painting of The Madonna of the Pinks, about 1506–7, was an intriguing mystery for art historians. Only copies of the painting were known. However, during a visit to Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, Dr Nicholas Penny spotted an intriguing painting which demanded closer examination.
Infrared reflectograms revealed an exquisite underdrawing beneath the paint surface, bearing all the hallmarks of Raphael's hand. Subtle differences between this underdrawing and the finished painting, particularly in the costume and background landscape, showed the artist had changed his mind as he worked. No copyist wishing to pass a painting off as the original would have departed from his model in such a way. Chemical analysis confirmed that the pigments used were typical of Raphael's distinctive palette, including some that ceased to be used after the 16th century.
'Close Examination' is the first major exhibition to explore the full range of scientific discoveries made by a leading art gallery within its collection. The close working relationship between scientists, conservators and curators constantly yields new and exciting findings while helping us to gain a deeper understanding of important works of art.
Visit The National Gallery in London at : http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:36 PM PDT
WILMINGTON, DE.- The Delaware Art Museum presents Fifty Works for the First State: The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection, featuring art produced between 1966 and 2003 by 23 artists, on view June 19, 2010 – August 29, 2010. Dorothy and Herbert Vogel assembled one of the world's most outstanding collections of minimal and conceptual art—over 4,000 works. They then teamed up with the National Gallery of Art, with the generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, to launch Fifty Works for Fifty States.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:35 PM PDT
Hamburg - The Deichtorhallen in Hamburg is proud to present its summer exhibition "Two Collectors: Thomas Olbrecht and Harald Falckenberg", on view in the Halle fur Aktuelle Kunst until August 21st. The exhibition features works from two of the most important private collections of contemporary art in Germany. One main feature of the collection of doctor and chemist Thomas Olbricht (who lives in Essen and Berlin), is a clear proclivity for eclecticism, in which context his programmatic focus lies on memento mori depictions. By contrast, Hamburg-based lawyer Harald Falckenberg is more interested in the grotesque, the political and the provocative.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:34 PM PDT
New York City.- Sotheby's New York auction of American Paintings, Drawings & Sculpture on 1st December 2011 will feature a strong selection works across the diverse genres that the category encompasses, with many of the highlights on offer from distinguished institutions and celebrated collections. Following Sotheby's 2004 sale of a group of 31 George Catlin paintings, on offer from The Field Museum in Chicago and originally in the collection of Benjamin O'Fallon, the December 2011 sale will be led by four additional works from the collection that represent the finest from the original group. The sale will be on exhibition in Sotheby's York Avenue galleries beginning 26th November. George Catlin was a 19th century painter who specialized in depicting Native American tribes of the Old West, and Benjamin O'Fallon – nephew of William Clark and the 'United States Indian Agent' for the Missouri River Tribes – was one of his first patrons. The collection that O'Fallon assembled is remarkable for including only works that Catlin painted in the West during the first two years of his effort to visit every tribe in the United States, as opposed to those he painted later from Europe. The paintings have resided in the collection of The Field Museum in Chicago since 1894, when it purchased the 35 surviving Catlin paintings from Benjamin O'Fallon's collection.
In December 2004, the museum consigned 31 of the canvases to Sotheby's, which sold them at auction as a single lot to a private collector. At the time of the 2004 sale, the Field Museum retained what were arguably the four finest canvases from the O'Fallon Collection, which are the four works on offer this December in New York. The group features two portraits and two scene paintings. "One Horn, Head Chief of the Miniconjou Tribe, Teton Dakota (Western Sioux)" is one of the first portraits that Catlin made in the field (estimate $1/1.5 million), while "Black Hawk, Prominent Sauk Chief, Sauk and Fox" depicts the man who gave his name to a brief but bloody war in the summer of 1832 (estimate $1/1.5 million). "Interior of a Mandan Lodge" is one of six surviving pictures from the collection that depict Mandan sitters (estimate $800,000/1.2 million), and "Buffalo Chase, a Surround by the Hidatsa" is a dramatic and chaotic hunting scene that is among the most dynamic of Catlin's canvases (estimate $800,000/1.2 million).
The December sale will feature Winslow Homer's rare oil painting "Reverie" (estimate $1.2/1.8 million) from the collection of Joan Whitney Payson. The work is from a small series of four canvases executed in the summer of 1872, while the artist was staying in Hurley, New York. Each shows a young woman in a dark interior, beside a bright window view of the outdoors – the composition and costume of the girl recalling the tradition of 17th century Dutch interiors. The works stand alone in Homer's career, as nothing the artist did before or after these works directly refers to them. Relatively small in scale, they are gem-like in execution. They are the work of an artist who had already made his mark critically both in the United States and abroad, but was still striving to find his own voice and to establish his own market. Another rare work from the 19th century will be "Red Hollyhocks" by John La Farge, an artist whose works infrequently appear at auction (estimate $500/700,000). La Farge was known for experimenting with color and technique, and in this spirit he painted his 1860s hollyhock compositions in encaustic – a mix of oil and wax credited to the ancient Greeks that gives the present work its unique texture and striking coloration. Sotheby's is honored to offer a group of 18 works from the highly personal collection of Helen Marx this December. As a successful publisher under the imprint Helen Marx Books, she specialized in literary fiction, biographies and works in French. Over a period of 30 years, Mrs. Marx assembled a collection that reflected both her sophisticated taste and lifelong dedication to the arts, including beautiful examples by several of the most notable American artists of the 19th century.
Property from the Estate of Helen Marx will be led by works from Martin Johnson Heade and Winslow Homer. Heade's "Orchids and Hummingbirds" is an example of the artist's coveted pairings of the flora and fauna he first witnessed in Brazil in 1863 (estimate $500/700,000). "Orange Trees and Gate" is one of a series of watercolors executed by Homer during his first trip to Nassau, Bahamas in 1884-85 (estimate $500/700,000). Recognized as one of the 19th century's most gifted masters of this medium, Homer's work captures the brilliant sunshine and the abundant tropical foliage of the islands. The Marx collection will also feature still lifes by artists including Severin Roesen and William Michael Harnett, as well as a charming group of genre paintings. The American Paintings, Drawings & Sculpture auction will feature two works executed in 1946 by iconic American artists visiting Mexico. Made after a three-month long trip to Mexico in that year, "Crucifixion" exemplifies Milton Avery's ability to create works appealing to serious and popular audiences, while responding to a contemporary cultural dialogue between the United States and Mexico around the time of World War II (estimate $1/1.5 million). The work depicts a local woman worshipping in the Parrochia church of San Miguel de Allende. To escape the tense climate of New England, Edward Hopper and his wife Jo began visiting Mexico for their summers in 1943. On their first trip they discovered the small town of Saltillo, and they returned there each summer for several years. Always painting en plein air and after 5 pm in order to record the best late afternoon light, Hopper produced an impressive group of watercolors inspired by the old town, including "Construction in Mexico" in 1946 (estimate $800,000/1.2 million).
In addition to the Catlin paintings from the Field Museum, Sotheby's is pleased to offer works from several additional museums as part of the December auction. Property from the Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery features Marsden Hartley's "Untitled (Still Life)" from 1919, which depicts a blooming cactus in a Pueblo Indian blackware olla, set on a red and white striped table cloth with a view of the New Mexico landscape behind (estimate $700/900,000). Johan Oscar Thorsen – a colleague of artist Birger Sandzén at Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas – had purchased the work directly from Hartley after a trip to Santa Fe, and on his death it was bequeathed to the Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery at Bethany. Property from the Textile Museum, Washington, D.C. will include a bronze portrait medallion of Robert Louis Stevenson that documents his friendship with the artist Augustus Saint-Gaudens, the acclaimed sculptor of the monument to Civil War hero David Farragut installed in Madison Square Park (est. $100/150,000). Property from the Amerind Foundation Collection features Robert Henri's "Untitled [Alanna]" from 1928 (estimate $400/600,000). The work is among Henri's last paintings, and depicts a young girl from Achill Island, Ireland, where the artist and his wife lived in the 1920s. And Property from the Israel Museum, Jerusalem will offer works by Thomas Hart Benton and Marsden Hartley.
American Illustration in the sale will be led by a group of eight works by quintessential American artist Norman Rockwell. The group will feature the Saturday Evening Post cover "Couple with Milkman", which depicts a couple on their way home from an evening event, stopping a milkman to check the time (estimate $1.2/1.8 million). The work reflects the central role that young romance had come to play in Rockwell's life – after divorcing his first wife Irene O'Connor in 1930, he married the young schoolteacher Mary Barstow – and further conveys the inherent humor the artist found in all walks of daily American life. The December auction will also feature Rockwell's work in advertising. "Whispering sweepstakes" is a group of four paintings commissioned by the Corn Products Company for use in ads for Skippy peanut butter (estimate $200/300,000), while both "Young Husband Checking Grocery List" (estimate $250/350,000) and "Pregnant Woman Drinking Tea" (estimate $200/300,000) were commissioned by the Brooke Bond Foods Company for use in ads for its Red Rose Tea label.
Sotheby's was founded in London on March 11, 1744, when Samuel Baker auctioned "several Hundred scarce and valuable books" from the library of the Rt Hon Sir John Stanley for a few hundred pounds. The story of Sotheby's expansion beyond books to include the best in fine and decorative arts and jewellery is also the story of the global auction market, defined by extraordinary moments that continue to capture the world's attention. Since 1744, Sotheby's has distinguished itself as a leader in the auction world. Their auctions, conducted in the venerable salerooms in London and Paris, the museum-quality galleries of their headquarters in New York and the spirited environs of Hong Kong rivet audiences worldwide. Season after season, the depth and excellence of Sotheby's offerings have produced watershed, record-breaking sales. They were the first international auction house to expand from London to New York in 1955, and the first to conduct sales in Hong Kong and the then–Soviet Union. Today they maintain 90 locations in 40 countries and they conduct 250 auctions each year in over 70 categories. In addition to their four principal salerooms, the company, recognising the potential in new markets, also conducts auctions in six other salerooms around the world, further expanding its global reach. Visit the auction house's website at ... http://www.sothebys.com
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:33 PM PDT
NEW YORK, N.Y.- Klemens Gasser & Tanja Grunert present the exhibition Ocularpation: Wall Street by Zefrey Throwell , from January 6-February 11, 2012, featuring photographs, paintings, video, and sculpture. The exhibition centers around a large-scale continuous video projection of Ocularpation: Wall Street, created on August 1, 2011, in which 50 performers directed by Zefrey Throwell, gathered outdoors on Wall Street, stripped down to nothing, and began working in a call for transparency that caught fire and spread across the globe. The experience and documentation of Ocularpation informs the varied works in the exhibition. A series of acrylic paintings, using signature Wall Street blue trader jackets sewn together as the canvas, are collaged with photographs of the performances. Fifty sculptures of everyday objects, relating to the Wall Street professions (i.e. broom—janitorial, handcuffs—police, piggybank— banker, etc.), have been coated with a thin veneer of gold enamel, thereby transforming them into precious artworks. Zefrey, who used nudity so powerfully as a symbol of exposure and transparency in the Ocularpation performance and the recent strip poker game I'll Raise you One… at Art in General, uses gold in this body of work in reference to the current American financial dream, sold as a glittering jewel, but in fact is a fantasy whose value is speculation.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:32 PM PDT
Provincetown, MA - The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) and Norman Mailer Writers Colony (NMWC) announce two special events featuring the internationally acclaimed contemporary artist Walton Ford; both events are open to the public and proceeds will benefit both non-profit groups. First is a gathering and intimate dinner with the artist at the historic Norman Mailer Home on Saturday, August 15, 7:30pm. At $325, tickets include a signed copy of Ford's book, Pancha Tantra. The second event is a public presentation at PAAM on Sunday, August 16, 11am, during which this former Guggenheim Fellow discusses his creative journey and his artworks in an open forum.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:31 PM PDT
CHICAGO, IL.- The DePaul University Art Museum will become a working art studio as part of "The Nomadic Studio," a unique exhibition exploring the mobility of artists and their workspaces that opens July 8. The exhibition, which runs through November 21, is part of Studio Chicago, a year long collaborative project that focuses on the artist's studio. It will be held at the DePaul Art Museum, 2350 N. Kenmore Ave., Chicago.
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:30 PM PDT
Chichesater, UK.- The Pallant House Gallery in Chichester, West Sussex, is delighted to present the first major show for over 25 years of the work of Edward Burra (1905 – 1976), one of the most individual and celebrated British artists of the twentieth century. Featuring some of his best known images of cafés, bars and nightclubs, as well as examples of other aspects of the artist's oeuvre such as his fascination with the macabre and dark sides of humanity, his role as a talented designer for the stage and sensitive depictions of the British landscape, this new exhibition provides a unique opportunity to reassess Burra's extraordinary creativity and impressive legacy. "Edward Burra" will be on view from October 22nd Through February 19th 2012.
Despite suffering from acute arthritis, Edward Burra created a large body of memorable images during his lifetime, featuring monumental scale and unusually powerful handling of the watercolour medium. Defiantly anti-intellectual, he was nevertheless widely read and drew on an extraordinary range of influences from Old Master paintings by artists such as Bosch, Brueghel, El Greco, Hogarth and Goya, to his own contemporaries such as William Roberts, Fernand Léger and the Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity) artists Otto Dix and George Grosz, as well as Hollywood cinema, ballet, and jazz music. Yet despite these many influences Burra remained distinct from most mainstream art movements though he was a member of the British art group Unit One and the English Surrealist Group in the 1930s and a close friend of the artist Paul Nash.
Burra painted for himself, describing it as 'a sort of drug' and each of his paintings is unmistakably his own. The exhibition opens on the 35th anniversary of Burra's death on 22 October 1976, and is the largest single-artist exhibition held at the Gallery. Many of these works have been drawn from private collections, and have not been shown in public for many years, as well as national collection such as Tate, National Portrait Gallery, Imperial War Museum, and the Victoria Albert Museum.
Edward Burra (29 March 1905 – 22 October 1976) was an English painter, draughtsman and printmaker, best known for his depictions of the urban underworld, black culture and the Harlem scene of the 1930s. Burra was born in South Kensington, London, and attended preparatory school but later had to be withdrawn due to anaemia and rheumatic fever. Burra studied at Chelsea School of Art from 1921-3, and the Royal College of Art from 1923-4. He had his first solo show at the Leicester Galleries in 1929. He was a member of Unit One in 1933 and showed with the English Surrealists later in the 1930s. Burra travelled widely, and many influences are at play in his works, which were usually watercolour on a large scale in strong colours. During World War Two, when it became impossible to travel, he also became involved in designing scenery and costumes for ballet (including Miracle in the Gorbals) and became very successful in that field. He declined membership of the Royal Academy in 1963 after being elected but was created CBE in 1971. The Tate Gallery held a retrospective of his work in 1973. After breaking his hip in 1974 his health declined sharply and he died in Hastings, England in 1976. Archive material of Edward Burra's is held at the Tate Gallery Archive.
Walter Hussey, the Dean of Chichester Cathedral, left his personal collection to the city in 1977 with the condition that the collection be shown in Pallant House, a Grade 1 listed Queen Anne town house dating from 1712. Since 1919, the house had been used as Council offices and from 1979 a restoration programme began and preparations were made for it to open in 1982 as a unique combination of historic house and modern art gallery. In 1985 an independent trust, consisting of the Friends and representatives of the Council, was formed to manage the Gallery. Since then the collections and the Gallery's activities have expanded to the extent that it was decided a new building was needed in order for it to survive. The Gallery reopened Summer 2006 with a new wing and vastly improved facilities. Pallant House Gallery boasts one of the best collections of Modern British art in the UK. donated over the past thirty years, the collections tell the story of a number of individuals, all passionate collectors of art who generously donated their lifetimes' labours to the Gallery for the benefit of the public. Since Dean Walter Hussey's gift of works by Henry Moore, John Piper, Ceri Richards, Graham Sutherland and others that led to its inception in 1982, the Gallery has attracted the interest of other benefactors, most notably Charles Kearley and now Sir Colin St John Wilson. The core of this 'collection of collections' is Modern British art butother artworks figure such at the Bow Porcelain of the Geoffrey Freeman Collection. Each group of works has been formed by different impulses and lends its own character to the collection, making the experience of Pallant House Gallery engaging, insightful and unique. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.pallant.org.uk
Posted: 30 Mar 2012 07:29 PM PDT
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