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Displaying items by tag: National Gallery of Art

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. will receive 30 photographs from Robert E. Meyerhoff, a longtime supporter of the museum, and his partner, Rheda Becker. The gift includes photographs by a number of German artists including Andreas Gursky and Bernd and Hilla Becker as well as works by Jeff Wall, Cindy Sherman, and Hiroshi Sugimoto.

The gift will substantially improve the National Gallery of Art’s photography collection, which contains few works by prominent living artists. The museum began assembling its photography collection in 1949 when Georgia O’Keeffe donated 1,720 photographs made by her husband, Alfred Stieglitz, to the institution. The National Gallery of Art did not establish a separate photography department until 1990.

In 1987, Meyerhoff and his late wife, Jane, agreed to donate their entire art collection to the National Gallery of Art. The gift included works by Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein, Ellsworth Kelly, and Brice Marden and was displayed at the museum in 1996 and again in 2010. This recent gift will go on view when the museum’s East Building reopens in the fall of 2016 after a renovation and expansion.    

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In his 2015 fiscal year budget, President Obama increased federal appropriation requests for the Smithsonian Institution and the National Gallery of Art. The Smithsonian, which received a $45 million increase over 2014, will put a portion of the funds towards its new National Museum of African American History and Culture, which is slated to open towards the end of 2015. Proposed funding for the National Gallery of Art increased $7 million from the previous year. The President’s budget has allotted $140 million for salaries, expenses, and renovations.

President Obama allotted $146 million for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the same amount requested in 2014. The NEA is an independent federal agency that funds and promotes artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals as well as communities.   

Appropriations could change once congressional appropriation committees review President Obama’s budget.

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According to a plan announced on Wednesday, February 19, Washington, D.C.’s Corcoran Gallery of Art could hand over its vast, 17,000-piece collection to the government-backed National Gallery of Art. Under the proposed plan, George Washington University would assume control of the Corcoran’s historic Beaux-Arts building as well as the Corcoran College of Art and Design.

The proposal aims to keep the Corcoran open to the public and its collection, which features works by Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, Edward Hopper and Willem de Kooning, would remain in public institutions. The National Gallery would present exhibitions of modern and contemporary art in the Corcoran under the name Corcoran Contemporary, National Gallery of Art. It would also oversee the Corcoran Legacy Gallery, which would present a selection of works from the Corcoran’s collection.

The Corcoran, the largest privately supported art museum in the country, opened to the public in 1897. The museum has been struggling financially for years and is in need of considerable renovations.

A decision regarding the proposal is expected to be made in April.

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The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco are currently hosting the exhibition “Modern Nature: Georgia O’Keeffe and Lake George” at the de Young Museum. The show, which was organized by the Hyde Collection in Glens Falls, New York in association with the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is the first exhibition to explore Georgia O’Keeffe’s paintings of Lake George.

Between 1918 and 1934, O’Keeffe would spend months at her husband Alfred Stieglitz’s family estate slightly north of Lake George Village in New York’s Adirondack Park. During this highly productive period, O’Keeffe created over 200 paintings depicting the bucolic, wooded setting, which differ greatly from her well-known renderings of the sparse Southwestern landscape.

“Modern Nature” features 53 works from public and private collections and includes botanical compositions of flowers and vegetables as well as still lifes and paintings of the trees that grew on the 36-acre estate. The exhibition also includes paintings of weathered barns and other structures as well as panoramic landscapes. Works have been loaned from a number of celebrated public institutions including the Seattle Art Museum, the Denver Art Museum, the High Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the National Gallery of Art, and the Walker Art Center.

Colin B. Bailey, director of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, said, “It is especially gratifying to host this pioneering and scholarly exhibition of Georgia O’Keeffe’s Lake George‒period works, as the artist’s ‘Petunias’ (1925), featured in the exhibition, is a highlight of our renowned collection of modernist works by artists associated with the Stieglitz circle.”

The de Young Museum is the only west coast venue for the exhibition. “Modern Nature” will remain on view through May 11, 2014.

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Monday, 17 February 2014 12:49

Thomas Cole Paintings to Embark on 18-Month Tour

The Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute’s Museum of Art in Utica, New York is sending a collection of Thomas Cole paintings on an 18-month tour to four major art museums. “The Voyage of Life,” a series of four allegorical paintings depicting the different stages of life including “Childhood,” “Youth,” “Manhood,” and “Old Age,” will go to the Taft Museum of Art in Cincinnati, Ohio, the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, Virginia, the Saint Louis Art Museum in St. Louis, Missouri, and the Dickson Gallery & Gardens in Memphis, Tennessee. The works will remain at the MWPAI until March 2, 2014.

Cole, the English-born American artist who founded the Hudson River School, was commissioned to paint “The Voyage of Life” by banker Samuel Ward between 1839 and 1840. When Ward passed away, Cole argued with Ward’s heirs over who had custody of the art. Ultimately, the heirs won and Cole painted another version of “The Voyage of Life” for himself. Cole’s second rendition of the series resides in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

The MWPAI is producing a catalog to tour with the collection, which will include essays and notes as well as never-before-published material and research about the paintings.

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Since September 2013, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. has acquired a number of important works from the 15th through 20th centuries including tempera-and-gold drawings on vellum from the Middle Ages and works on paper by Paul Cézanne, Claude Monet and Paul Gauguin. Earl A. Powell III, the director of the National Gallery of Art, said, “These acquisitions are masterworks from the Middle Ages to the current moment that represent the highest levels of creativity in media ranging from printmaking and manuscript illumination to easel painting and photography. We are delighted that they can be shared with the public as part of our permanent collection.”

Among the museum’s recent acquisitions are a woodcut-illustrated book of Giovanni Boccaccio’s ‘Seminal History of Famous Women’, the Gallery’s earliest German woodcut book; ‘Still Life with Peacock Pie,’ a banquet piece measuring more than four feet across by the Dutch Golden Age painter Pieter Claesz; one of Jean-Honoré Fragonard’s finest versions of ‘Avenue of Cypresses at Villa d’Este’; a watercolor by Cézanne titled ‘A Stand of Trees Along a River Bank’; an early drawing by Gauguin titled ‘Seated Nude Seen from Above’; a pastel of Waterloo Bridge by Monet; and Pop artist Jim Dine’s ‘Name Painting.’ The National Gallery of Art also received works by artists such as Roy Lichtenstein, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Marc Chagall, Jasper Johns and Robert Motherwell from the celebrated Herbert and Dorothy Vogel Collection. 

The National Gallery of Art was established in 1937 for the people of the United States by a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress. Financier and art collector, Andrew W. Mellon, donated a portion of his sizeable art collection to the museum, forming its core holdings. The National Gallery of Art’s collection of paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculptures and decorative arts spans from the Middle Ages to the present and includes the only painting by Leonardo da Vinci in the Americas as well as the largest mobile ever created by Alexander Calder.

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Friday, 20 December 2013 18:13

National Gallery Acquires Ninth Van Gogh Painting

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. has received Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘Green Wheat Fields, Auvers,’ from the estate of museum benefactor, Paul Mellon. The work, which was painted late in the artist’s life, is the ninth Van Gogh painting to enter the museum’s collection. The work has not been displayed publicly since 1966.

‘Green Wheat Fields, Auvers’ is one of Van Gogh’s “pure landscapes,” which he painted following his confinement in an asylum. Scholars suggest that the artist found solace in the tranquility of nature towards the end of his life as his mental health deteriorated.

‘Green Wheat Fields, Auvers’ is currently on display in the National Gallery’s West Building alongside two other works by Van Gogh: the still life ‘Roses’ and the portrait ‘La Mousmé.’

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The Roy Lichtenstein Foundation has announced that it will donate its remarkable Harry Shunk and Shunk-Kender Photography Collection to five major institutions -- the Getty Research Institute, the Museum of Modern Art, the National Gallery of Art, the Centre Pompidou, and the Tate. The collection includes approximately 200,000 black-and-white prints, color prints, negatives, contact sheets, color transparencies, and slides.

The Foundation’s donation is unique in that it will establish a consortium among the institutions that will both receive and share the materials. The collection of photographic material was shot by the late Harry Shunk and Janos Kender, and dates from approximately 1958 to 1973. Many of the images capture notable artists such as Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Robert Rauschenberg, Joan Miro, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol, Man Ray, Barnett Newman, and Alexander Calder.

The photographs were acquired by the Foundation between 2008 and 2012, several years after Shunk’s death. The Foundation went on to preserve, catalogue and digitize the works, eventually creating a free online archive.

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The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, MA will unveil its updated, 140-acre campus on July 4, 2014. The museum’s decade-long expansion plan is the most significant transformation the institution has undergone since opening in 1955.

The renovations were spearheaded by three different architects -- Japan’s Tadao Ando Architects designed the new, 44,000-square-foot Visitor Center; New York’s Selldorf Architects transformed the original Museum Building as well as the Manton Research Center; and Massachusetts-based firm, Reed Hilderband, updated the Clark’s landscape and added a dramatic, one-acre reflecting pool. The renovation added over 16,000-square-feet of gallery space to the museum, allowing the Clark to exhibit more of its remarkable collection, which includes Old Master paintings, Impressionist masterpieces, and fine British and American silver.

When the Clark reopens this summer, the museum will present four inaugural exhibitions and the reinstallation of its collections. The exhibitions include ‘Make It New: Abstract Paintings from the National Gallery of Art, 1950–1975,’ ‘Cast for Eternity: Ancient Ritual Bronzes from the Shanghai Museum,’ ‘Raw Color: The Circles of David Smith,’ and ‘Photography and Discovery.’

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Monday, 09 December 2013 18:29

National Gallery Unveils Chagall Mosaic

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. has unveiled a permanent and public home for a glass and stone mosaic designed by Marc Chagall. ‘Orphée,’ which was donated to the museum by the late collector Evelyn Stefansson Nef, will reside in the National Gallery’s Sculpture Garden.

The mosaic, which was a special gift from Chagall to Nef and her husband, John, spent over 40 years in the couple’s garden in Georgetown. The work was donated to the museum in 2009 as part of a major bequest of over 100 works from the Nef’s collection of 19th- and 20th-century artworks. Measuring around 10’ x 17’, the mosaic depicts various figures from Greek mythology.    

The work was one of the first large-scale outdoor Chagall mosaics to be installed in the United States and during the spring of 2010, a team of conservators, curators, art handlers, designers and masons spent five weeks removing the mosaic from the Nef’s garden wall. Over the next three and a half years, conservators, gallery masons, designers and Italian mosaic experts cleaned the glass and stone, repaired the mosaic’s structural reinforcement, and painstakingly re-installed the work in the National Gallery’s Sculpture Garden.

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