Past Exhibitions

SANKOFA: LOOKING BACK, MOVING FORWARD

March 15, 2019
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Stryker Center | May 1 – June 17, 2019 | Monday through Friday 10 AM – 5 PM, Sunday 1 – 5 PM (except for May 26)

Sankofa is an Adinkra symbol from Ghana, which translates as “to look into one’s past in order to move forward.” Sankofa: Looking Back, Moving Forward is composed of drawings and prints by artist Steve Prince. His work offers a candid look into America’s past and challenges us to look deeper for meaning and understanding of how we have collectively arrived at this juncture in history. The art challenges us to not only be cognitive of the history and the scars we have sustained, but also posits a message of hope for communal renewal if we dare work together to solve the deep-set communal issues.

 

The artist will be in residence at the Stryker Center, ready to engage with visitors while he completes his latest drawing from the series May 13 – 17, 2019. Please join Prince at the Stryker Center on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM and on Tuesday/Thursday from 5:30 to 7:30 PM.

 

In the Light of Caravaggio: Dutch and Flemish Paintings from Southeastern Museums

December 4, 2017
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February 10 – May 13, 2018

In the Light of Caravaggio: Dutch and Flemish Paintings from Southeastern Museums features important Caravaggesque paintings from the renowned collections of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, North Carolina Museum of Art, Speed Museum, Bob Jones University Museum & Gallery, and Chrysler Museum of Art including recent acquisitions to the collection of the Muscarelle.  As seen previously in 2014 at the Muscarelle Museum of Art, Michelangelo Merisi called Caravaggio (Italian, 1571-1610), had an enormous influence on Baroque art with his dramatic use of light and emotive realism.  Paintings by Rembrandt, ter Brugghen, van Baburen, Honthorst, Janssen and Rombouts exemplify Caravaggio’s influence on Dutch and Flemish painters of the seventeenth century.  This rare gathering of masterworks, on view together for the first time in twenty years, provides a unique opportunity for Muscarelle visitors to see an embarrassment of riches from Southeastern Museums.

Press release available here.

Image citation: DIRCK VAN BABUREN | Dutch, c. 1590 – 1624 | Narcissus Gazing at his Reflection (detail), c. 1621 – 1622 | Oil on canvas | Muscarelle Museum of Art at the College of William & Mary | Acquired with funds from the Board of Visitors Muscarelle Museum of Art Endowment | 2016.003

Women With Vision: Masterworks from the Permanent Collection

December 4, 2017
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February 10 – May 13, 2018

The Muscarelle Museum of Art is proud to present Women With Vision: Masterworks from the Permanent Collection in conjunction with William & Mary’s 100 Years of Women celebration. This exhibition features over thirty works by prominent women artists from the permanent collection and is comprised of a variety of media styles and time periods expressing their vision.

Press release available here.

Image Citation: GEORGIA O’KEEFFE | American, 1887 – 1986 | White Flower, 1932 | Oil on panel | Muscarelle Museum of Art at the College of William & Mary | Gift of Mrs. John D. Rockefeller, Jr. | © Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, ARS | 1934.007

Guerrilla Girls: Conscience of the Art World

December 1, 2017
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February 10 – May 13, 2018

We are proud to present Guerrilla Girls: Conscience of the Art World in the Herman Graphic Arts Room as part of the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of coeducation at William & Mary and in Virginia. In 2017, the Museum acquired the Guerrilla Girls Portfolio Compleat, a portfolio that contains over 125 posters and projects created by the Guerrilla Girls from 1985 through 2016.  Since 1985 and even more stridently today, the Guerrilla Girls have been concerned with broader discrimination; particularly social oppression related to race, class, and gender.  In this exhibition you will see how the Guerrilla Girls use a combination of humor, advertising styled graphics and statistics to openly protest the imbalance of men and women artists in galleries and museums worldwide.

Fred Eversley, 50 Years an Artist: Light & Space & Energy

June 14, 2017
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September 2 – December 10, 2017

Fred Eversley, 50 Years an Artist: Light & Space & Energy features a survey of the artist’s work representing an extraordinary fifty-year career.  Eversley, trained as an engineer, began making his polyester resin sculptures with an aim to “create kinetic art without using kinetic elements such as mechanical movement or artificial light changes.”  Eversley’s strong interest in energy  has led to further creations that utilize wind current to create dynamic acrylic cast forms.  This retrospective exhibition featuring the works of Fred Eversley, an important African American sculptor and innovator, will coincide with the College’s fiftieth anniversary of the first residential African American students.  Interestingly, as the artist has pointed out to us, the dates of desegregation at the College of William & Mary in September 1967 is the exact month and year that he embarked on his exceptional career as an artist.

Press release available here.

Image citation: Fred Eversley | American, b. 1941 | Blue Para, 2004 | Cast polyester resin | 20 x 20 x 6 inches | Muscarelle Museum of Art | Photo: Maria Larsson

Building on the Legacy

May 5, 2017
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September 2, 2017 – January 14, 2018

Building on the Legacy: African American Art from the Permanent Collection is comprised of more than thirty paintings, drawings, works on paper and sculptures by some of this country’s most renowned artists.  This academic year of 2017-2018, the College of William & Mary commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of the first African American students in residence: Lynn Briley, Janet Brown and Karen Ely.  In honor of this milestone, the Muscarelle Museum of Art is proud to showcase works from the permanent collection that encompasses a variety of media, styles and time periods, exemplifying the plurality of vision among these accomplished artists.  The selection embraces a panoply of approaches, ranging from the nineteenth-century realism of Henry Ossawa Tanner to the contemporary conceptualism of Martin Puryear.  The subjects include portraiture by realist and folk artists, black-and-white abstractions and colorful landscapes, including recent acquisitions.

Press release available here.

To learn more about 50th commemoration events, click here.

 

 

 

 Image Credits:
Left: JEANNE MOUTOUSSAMY-ASHE | American, b. 1951 | Maya Angelou, 1993 | Silver print with hand coloring | Muscarelle Museum of Art | Acquired with funds from the Board of Visitors Muscarelle Museum of Art Endowment | © Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe | 2015.027
Right: JOHN WILSON | American, 1922 – 2015 | Martin Luther King, Jr., 2002 | Etching on chine collé | Muscarelle Museum of Art | Acquired with funds from the Board of Visitors Muscarelle Museum of Art Endowment | © Estate of the artist | 2015.011

The Bones of the Earth: Scholars’ Rocks and the Natural World in Chinese Culture, Selections from the Robert Turvene Collection

April 17, 2017
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April 21 – August 13, 2017

In Chinese philosophy and ancient legend, Scholars’ rocks were viewed as “the bones of the earth”. Since the Song dynasty (960–1279), these natural sculptures have been regarded as artifacts of the sacred relationship between man and nature and described in folklore as otherworldly. Collectors of these stones use them for contemplation and inspiration. The selections on view at the Muscarelle Museum of Art are part of larger group and promised gift from the Collection of Robert Turvene (W&M ’53) and are comprised of every revered type including Lingbi, Ying, Taihu, Mohu, Nine Dragon, Kun, Meng and Three Gorges.

Curated by Lowry Palmer (W&M ’17) and Elizabeth Dowker (W&M ’20).

Press release is available here.

The Art and Science of Connoisseurship

April 5, 2017
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February 11 – August 13, 2017

The Art and Science of Connoisseurship explores the creative narrative behind six paintings attributed to Agnolo Bronzino, Annibale Carracci, Guido Reni, Peter Paul Rubens, Peter Lely, and Paul Cézanne.  This exhibition presents a series of visual examinations and scientific analyses that address the questions of who, what, where, when, and why surrounding these recently-acquired paintings.  From observations of stylistic progression and considerations of an artist’s chronology, to the identification of retouched surfaces and studies of paint samples, each of the Muscarelle’s new works presents distinctive issues in connoisseurship.

Fire and Clay: New Acquisitions of Chinese Antiquities

March 21, 2017
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May 6 – August 13, 2017

This exhibition represents a celebration and first public showing of an outstanding collection of Chinese art recently donated to the Muscarelle Museum of Art.  The generous gift comprised of twenty-one superb works, covers an arc of almost two thousand years of the world’s greatest tradition of pottery-making, dating from circa 475-221 BC in clay and 400-201 BC in bronze spanning through 1279-1368 AD.  In the course of this journey, the exhibition and the visitor will encounter enchanting examples from two golden ages of Chinese art, the Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) and culminating in the Tang Dynasty (618 – 906 AD).

Curated by Dr. John T. Spike with assistance from Phoebe Warren (W&M ’17) and Abigail Bradford (W&M ’17).

Press release is available here.

Botticelli and the Search for the Divine: Florentine Painting between the Medici and the Bonfires of the Vanities

December 2, 2016
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February 11 – April 5, 2017

The restless genius of Sandro Botticelli (Florence, 1445-1510) is explored in depth in the most important Botticelli exhibition ever seen in the United States, Botticelli and the Search for the Divine; a major international loan exhibition organized by the Muscarelle Museum of Art in Williamsburg, Va., in partnership with Italy’s Associazione Culturale Metamorfosi.  Every phase of the artist’s tumultuous career is represented in this selection, as well as nine works by his master Filippo Lippi, the only pupil of Masaccio. Botticelli was guided to success by the Medici dynasty, the patrons for sacred altarpieces and sensuous paintings of classical mythology, including several in this unprecedented exhibition. After the fall of the Medici, many of his paintings were lost in the bonfires of the vanities.

In the fourth such partnership, the exhibition will travel to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston as its only other venue and will include one of only two of Botticelli’s paintings of an isolated Venus, on view for the first time in the United States.  This exhibition is curated by Dr. John T. Spike.

February 11 – April 5, 2017 at the Muscarelle Museum of Art
and April 15 – July 9, 2017 at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Public tours will be held at the following times:

Wednesday at 6:00 PM
Friday at 11:00 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM, and 2:00 PM
Saturday & Sunday at 11:00 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM, 2:00 PM, and 3:00 PM


Download the Exhibition Brochure

Press Release Available Here

Image credit: Sandro Botticelli and workshop | Venus (detail) | Oil on canvas, transferred from wood panel | Galleria Sabauda, Turin, lnv. 172

Written in Confidence: The Unpublished Letters of James Monroe

December 2, 2016
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February 11 – May 21, 2017

Unpublished and on view for the first time, these letters are an important new resource for research and scholarship, providing viewers with a unique, inside glimpse of the man who served as President of the United States from 1817 to 1825.  Playing out as a drama in letters, these documents shed light on Monroe’s deliberations, particularly when making political appointments, revealing the sometimes uneasy task of granting positions of power.  The letters’ exhibition and their accessibility to researchers at the Special Collections Research Center create the exciting potential for new discoveries. Uncovering lost details of Monroe’s life and leadership, they provide a new lens through which to view one of the nation’s early leaders.

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[Monroe-Crawford Letters, 1816-1822, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary Libraries.]

A Deed Well Done: Thomas Jefferson’s 1783 Honorary Degree

December 1, 2016
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February – August 2017

Thomas Jefferson’s Honorary Degree , from collection of the Massachusetts Historical Society, is the only diploma Jefferson received from his alma mater and confers upon him “gladly and eagerly of the degree of doctor in the civil law.”  This pocket exhibition focuses on Jefferson’s years at William & Mary and the mentors who helped shaped the mind of the third President of the United States.

This exhibition is co-sponsored by the Office of the President at William & Mary.  Read more about Jefferson’s diploma here.

Contemporary American Marine Art: 17th National Exhibition of the American Society of Marine Artists

September 9, 2016
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September 10 through December 2, 2016

Hosted every three years by museums across the U.S., the American Society of Marine Artists (ASMA) holds a juried competition for the best in contemporary marine art.  ASMA is a non-profit educational organization whose purpose is to recognize and promote marine art and maritime history, and to encourage cooperation among artists, historians, academics, enthusiasts and others engaged in activities relating to marine art.  The Muscarelle Museum of Art kicks off the national tour in conjunction with the First National Marine Art Conference in Williamsburg (September 8-11).

Unique to the Muscarelle display, the Museum will partner with the Virginia Coastal Policy Center (VCPC) at the College of William & Mary Law School for a series of lectures featuring marine topics ranging from sea level rise, to the Clean Power Plan and the health of the Chesapeake Bay.  Through the First Tuesday Lecture Series, free and open to the public, the Museum will serve as a neutral space for open dialogue about complex coastal resource management issues among a backdrop of more than 120 works of art from the nation’s leading marine artists.

Building the Brafferton: The Founding, Funding and Legacy of America’s Indian School

September 9, 2016
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September 10, 2016 through January 8, 2017    Due to the inclement weather, the Muscarelle will be closed this weekend. We regret that January 6 will be the last day to come and see “Building the Brafferton” exhibition.  However, stay tuned for a forthcoming online version and exhibition catalogue.

Constructed in 1723, the Brafferton Indian School remains a strong visual symbol on the campus of the College of William & Mary. This is the first exhibition to examine the history of the Brafferton within the wider trans-Atlantic networks of trade, politics of church and state, and Great Britain’s colonial enterprise in North America.  New research on the Brafferton connects Indian students from the Pamunkey, Cherokee, Nottoway, and Wyandot tribes, to wider narratives of our shared past.  Historical paintings, engravings, archival documents, and contemporary Native American Art, are assembled to explore the founding, funding, and legacy of one of the nation’s oldest and most esteemed institutions of higher learning.

Curated by Danielle Moretti-Langholtz, Ph.D., Department of Anthropology and the Muscarelle Museum of Art, and Buck Woodard, Ph.D., American Indian Initiative, Division of Historical Research and Interpretation, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

Press Release Available Here

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Hark Upon a History: The 1929 Journey to England

As a companion exhibition to Building the Brafferton: The Founding, Funding and Legacy of America’s Indian School, Hark Upon a History is dedicated to William & Mary President Julian Alvin Carroll Chandler’s journey to explore and shed light on the English heritage of the College. In the spring of 1929, President Chandler and school architect, Charles Morrison Robinson, set sail for England. The pair were on a mission to investigate the history of the College and the origins of the Brafferton, which up until that point lay forgotten. This exhibition marks the first time that materials pertaining to their journey are on view. Curated by Sydney Stewart, ’16 and Michaela Wright, ’16, Hark upon a History  will be on display in the Herman Graphic Arts Study Room.

 

Museumscopes: Photography by Massimo Pacifico

April 14, 2016
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April 16 – August 14, 2016

The Muscarelle Museum of Art is pleased to announce the North American premiere of Museumscopes: Photography by Massimo Pacifico,  a colorful exhibition on the surprising theme that laughter, tears, sleeping and dancing happen every day – even in museums.  In his worldwide travels to shoot stories on five continents, renowned Italian photographer Massimo Pacifico discovered along the way that museums are also great places to see people just being themselves.  He focuses his lens to portray, sometimes with humor and always with sensitivity, the expressions and gestures of his fellow visitors as they stand, watch, ignore or mimic, the statues and paintings all around them.

Curators at Work VI

March 4, 2016
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April 16 through August 14, 2016

Our signature series, Curators at Work, returns in its sixth installment and features significant works from the permanent collection as well as exciting recent acquisitions. This annual exhibition provides the opportunity for undergraduate students from the College of William & Mary to serve as curators under the direction of Dr. John T. Spike in his seminar Curating, Collecting and Connoisseurship (INTR 220-01).

Light Works: A Century of Great Photography

February 4, 2016
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February 6, 2016— April 10, 2016

From Eadweard Muybridge’s 19th-century photographic studies of animal locomotion to Richard Misrach’s contemporary chromogenic prints, Light Works  explores the history of photography. Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Curtis, Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, Diane Arbus, Richard Avedon and many other celebrated photographers are highlighted in this exhibition.  Drawn primarily from the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, Light Works   also features works from the Muscarelle Museum of Art permanent collection as well as important loans.

Photo credit: EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE, Animal Locomotion, Man with a Donkey, 1887, collotype.  Collection of the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts; Gift of Wm John Upjohn.

Press Release Available Here

Faculty Show 13

May 19, 2015
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September 12, 2015 – January 17, 2016

Recent works of the teaching studio art faculty including visiting instructors and emeriti professors of The College of William & Mary are featured in Faculty Show 13.  This exhibition encompasses a variety of media including ceramics, drawing, painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture.  A long-standing collaboration between the Museum and the Department of Art & Art History, Faculty Show 13  includes works from the following artists: William Barnes, David Campbell, Linda Carey, Lewis Cohen, Suzanne Demeo, Michael Draeger, Eliot Dudik, Michael Gaynes, Kathleen Hall, Mike Jabbur, Marlene Jack, Brian Kreydatus, John Lee, Jayson Lowery, Elizabeth Mead, Ed Pease and Nicole M. Santiago.

Press Release Available Here

Curators at Work V

May 3, 2015
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May 2 – August 30, 2015

This exhibition is the culmination of the Curating, Collecting and Connoisseurship seminar taught under the tutelage of Dr. John T. Spike.  Fifth in the series, students have the opportunity to step into the role of exhibition curators as they select prints and drawings from the permanent collection.  The Museum serves as a laboratory for experiential undergraduate learning and, for this exhibition, students research and write the text that document the social and political context of individual works.  The exhibition primarily focuses on new acquisitions and covers a broad spectrum of time periods, styles and media.

Matilda of Canossa and the Origins of the Renaissance

April 25, 2015
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The Muscarelle Museum of Art, in its first collaboration with the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William & Mary is pleased to present Matilda of Canossa and the Origins of the Renaissance.  This is the first monographic exhibition in the United States ever dedicated to Matilda, one of the great leaders and women of the Middle Ages.  Curated by Michèle K. Spike, noted biographer of Matilda of Canossa and adjunct professor of law at the Marshall-Wythe School of Law, this exhibition will be on view from February 7 to April 24, 2015.

Matilda of Canossa Press Release

Twilight of a Golden Age: Florentine Painting After the Renaissance

February 24, 2015
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April 25, 2015 – January 17, 2016

On view through January 2016, Twilight of a Golden Age: Florentine Painting after the Renaissance, Masterworks from the Haukohl Family Collection provides the opportunity to see some of the finest examples of paintings and objects from the Florentine Baroque period.  Florentine Baroque paintings, dating from the late sixteenth to early eighteenth centuries, utilize vibrant colors and a brilliant use of shadow to portray dramatic scenes wrought with emotion.  The Haukohl Family Collection has been carefully curated by Sir Mark Fehrs Haukohl and this exhibition is made possible through his generosity.

Twilight of a Golden Age Press Release

Hiroshige’s 53 Stations of the Tokaido

February 4, 2015
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February 6, 2016 — August 21, 2016

Hiroshige’s 53 Stations of the Tokaido  explores the most traveled road in old Japan with fresh eyes. This exhibition presents five distinct complete sets of Hiroshige’s The 53 Stations of the Tokaido Road never before displayed together. Centering on the fifty-five woodblock prints of Hiroshige’s famed first set, the Hoeido Tokaido (1832-1833, oban), the four additional series reveal the spectrum of Hiroshige’s visual poetry: Sanoki Tokaido (late 1830s, bound, chuban); Gyosho Tokaido (c. 1841-1842, aiban); Tsutaya Tokaido (c. 1850, bound, chuban); Upright Tokaido (1855, oban).  Hiroshige’s Tokaido  immerses the viewer in a panoramic view of the Tokaido and Hiroshige’s romance with the landscape of Japan. All works in this exhibition are on loan from the Ronin Collection of the Ronin Gallery, New York.

Press Release Available Here

Norman Rockwell and the Boy Scouts

January 8, 2015
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February 6, 2016 – August 21, 2016

On loan from the National Scouting Museum in Irving, Texas, are nine paintings by Rockwell (1894-1978), famed for his nostalgic and patriotic depictions of 20th-century American life. The National Scouting Museum contains the largest collection of Rockwell’s Scout paintings anywhere in the world.

The exhibition is dedicated to William & Mary Chancellor and former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates ’65, who became president of the Boy Scouts of America in May 2014. It also commemorates important anniversaries for both organizations: on February 8, William & Mary was chartered in 1693 and the Boy Scouts of America was founded in 1910. The National Scouting Museum and the Muscarelle Museum of Art celebrate their partnership on the university’s Charter Day weekend in association with this shared anniversary.

Press Release Available Here

Leonardo da Vinci and the Idea of Beauty

October 28, 2014
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Organized by the Muscarelle Museum of Art, this unprecedented selection of more than twenty-five masterpiece drawings by Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo from Italian museums is the first exhibition to explore Leonardo’s philosophy of beauty as contrasted with his rival Michelangelo.  Also featured will be Leonardo’s renowned Codex on the Flight of Birds, containing a hidden self-portrait at age fifty-three, which has never previously been exhibited.

February 21 – April 5, 2015 at the Muscarelle Museum of Art
and April 15 – June 14, 2015 at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Press Releases:

January 20, 2015 Press Release

December 1, 2014 Press Release

Tree to Mountain: The Woodblock Prints of Toshi Yoshida

October 16, 2014
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October 17, 2014 — February 8, 2015

This exhibition celebrates the work of renowned Japanese printmaker Toshi Yoshida exploring the artist’s process, as well as his international travels. Yoshida’s woodblock prints are associated with the sosaku-hanga movement in Japanese art, which re-imagined the collaborative enterprise of printmaking by focusing on the artist as the sole creator versus traditional methods which compartmentalized skills into different rolls such as draftsman, carver, printer and publisher.

Tree to Mountain was guest curated by professors Hiroshi Kitamura and Xin Wu in conjunction with the seminar course Woodblock Exhibition Curation (ARTH 330) and installed as part of the Visual Cultures of East Asia program presented by the Muscarelle Museum of Art, the Asian and Middle Eastern Studies Program, and the Reves Center for International Studies.

Celebrating the American Scene: Painters of the Federal Art Program

October 16, 2014
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February 8, 2014 — January 11, 2015

The paintings and watercolors in this exhibition were commissioned by the Federal Arts Project (1935—1943), a sector of the Works Progress Administration that promoted the creation of hundreds of thousands of works of art around the country for display in schools, libraries, and other public buildings.  This collection of works, on loan from U.S. General Services Administration, portrays the growing urbanization of American rural landscape and its people from the beginnings of the Depression into World War II.

European Paintings from the Permanent Collection and Important Loans

October 16, 2014
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February 8, 2014 — February 8, 2015

This exhibition is comprised of a selection of European landscapes, portraits and religious images, from the Baroque and Renaissance periods. The paintings come from the permanent collection and loans from Thomas D. Dossett and Associates and The Lauro Collection.  Works by Titian, Diego Velázquez, and Luca Giordano are among the important artists on view.

 

Kabuki Theater Woodcuts

October 14, 2014
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April 29, 2014 — February 8, 2015

Kabuki (its name comprised of the Kanji characters for “sing”, “dance”, and “skill”) is a form of Japanese theatre known for its elaborate costumes, striking makeup, and intricate choreography. The ancient celebration of the beautiful and the bizarre is immortalized in this exhibition of Kabuki theatre woodcuts from the permanent collection.

Jacques Callot Studies from the Permanent Collection

October 14, 2014
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April 29, 2014 — February 8, 2015

This collection of etchings, by the 17th-century French printmaker Jacques Callot, represents a significant acquisition for the Museum.  A variety of series that Callot completed over his career are on view, including a pristine impression of one of his best-known works, the etching of Saint Amond. Shown in the Herman Print Study Room, the viewer will have a chance to explore the provenance, or history of ownership, of the works on view.