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Wednesday, 29 January 2014 17:44

Christie’s Americana Sales Net Over $10 Million

Christie’s Americana Week auctions, which included the sales of Important American Silver on January 23, Important American Furniture, Folk Art and Prints on January 24, and Chinese Export Art on January 27, fetched a total of $10,189,025.

The Chinese Export Art sale realized $3,034,750 and the top lot was a rare set of four large Chinese export porcelain nodding head figures from the Qianlong Period, which sold for $173,000. The Important American Silver sale netted $1,737,875 and the top lot, a silver Brandywine bowl by Cornelius Vander Burch from the late 17th century, brought $317,000. The Important American Furniture, Folk Art & Decorative Arts sale was the biggest hit of the week and realized $5,416,400. The top lot was an 18th century Chippendale carved Mahogany scallop-top tea table from Philadelphia, which garnered $905,000. Andrew Holter, head of American Furniture and Decorative Arts at Christie’s, said, “Today’s solid results underscore collectors’ continued appetite for works of exceptional provenance and quality.”

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In honor of its 100th anniversary, the Montclair Art Museum in Montclair, NJ is currently hosting the exhibition ‘100 Works for 100 Years: A Centennial Celebration.’ The show is organized chronologically and features works from the museum’s permanent collection that reflect its rich history.

The exhibition was unveiled at the museum’s 100th Birthday Party on January 15 and includes works by Childe Hassam, Asher B. Durand, Thomas Eakins, Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, Robert Henri, Edward Hopper, Mark Rothko, Robert Motherwell and Andy Warhol. ‘100 Works for 100 Years’ will be on view through July 31.

The Montclair Art Museum is devoted to American art and Native American art forms. Its collection consists of over 12,000 works and includes paintings, prints, drawings, photographs and sculpture dating from the 18th century to the present. The museum has the only gallery in the world dedicated solely to the work of the 19th century American painter George Inness, who lived and worked in Montclair.       

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A book published by Rizzoli New York will accompany the exhibition ‘Impressionists on the Water,’ which is currently on view at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA. The show presents over 90 paintings, prints, models and photographs by artists such as Edouard Manet, Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Georges Seurat and Alfred Sisley and explores how France’s waterways and oceans influenced these masters of Impressionism.

The book ‘Impressionists on the Water’ includes scholarly essays that examine the historical and cultural aspects of the nautical themes embraced by the Impressionists. The volume also charts the changing depictions of water from Pre-Impressionism through Impressionism to neo- and post-Impressionism. Contributors include Phillip Dennis Cate, a specialist in nineteenth-century French art; Daniel Charles, a noted historian with a particular expertise in maritime heritage; and Christopher Lloyd, Surveyor of the Queen’s Pictures, who is responsible for the care and maintenance of the UK’s royal collection of pictures.

‘Impressionists on the Water’ is available through Rizzoli’s website. The exhibition will be on view at the Peabody Essex Museum through February 17, 2014.

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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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Wednesday, 11 December 2013 17:45

Audubon’s Birds on View in Minneapolis

The University of Minnesota’s Bell Museum of Natural History is currently hosting the exhibition ‘Audubon and the Art of Birds,' which presents the original “double-elephant” prints from John James Audubon’s seminal work, ‘Birds of America.’ Produced between 1826 and 1838, the volume revolutionized our view of birds and nature and is widely considered one of the finest ornithological works ever completed.

Audubon and the Art of Birds’ presents 35 prints by theme -- Cataloging Creation, Exploration and Discovery, The Beauty of Birds, The Living Bird, Bird Book Evolution, Birds and Conservation, Birds in the Environment, Life and Death in Bird Art -- and includes works by Audubon’s contemporaries as well as those who followed in his footsteps. Ultimately, the exhibition traces the evolution of bird art from the 1500s to the present day and highlights Audubon’s role in that transformation.

‘Audubon and the Art of Birds’ will be on view at the Bell Museum through June 8, 2014. 

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The Dallas Museum of Art is currently hosting the traveling exhibition Hopper Drawing: A Painter’s Process. The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York organized the show, which is the first of its kind to focus on the drawings and working process of American painter Edward Hopper.

The exhibition features over 200 works including drawings, watercolors, prints and paintings drawn mainly from the Whitney’s revered collection of the artist’s work. Hopper Drawing reveals a mostly unknown side of the renowned artist, allowing visitors an intimate glimpse into Hopper’s mind at work. Maxwell L. Anderson, the Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum, said, “Through this presentation, we are able to better understand the gestation of Hopper’s ideas and the transformations they underwent from paper to canvas.”

Hopper Drawing will be on view at the Dallas Museum of Art through February 16, 2014.

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Monday, 11 November 2013 18:05

Flemish Masterpieces Go on View in China

Rubens, van Dyck and the Flemish School of Painting: Masterpieces from the Collections of the Prince of Liechtenstein is currently on view at the National Museum of China in Beijing. The exhibition features 100 works of Flemish art from the 16th and 17th centuries and marks the first time that such an remarkable selection of works from the Flemish Painting School has gone on view in China.

All of the paintings, prints and tapestries on view are part of the Princely Collections – the result of over 400 years of continuous art collection by the Princely Family of Liechtenstein. Prince Karl I of Liechtenstein laid the foundations for the collections, which include numerous masterpieces of European art, in 1600. Since then, the Princely House has supplemented, consolidated and expanded the collections.

The exhibition, which includes works by Peter Paul Rubens, Anthonis van Dyck and the Brueghel family of artists, will be on view at the National Museum of China through February 15, 2014. In March 2014, the exhibition will travel to the China Art Museum in Shanghai.

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Wednesday, 16 October 2013 17:41

The Getty Releases 4,500 More Images for Public Use

After releasing about 6,400 high-resolution images for public use without fees or restriction back in August, The Getty Research Institute has released a second batch of works, bringing the total number of images available to approximately 10,000. The initiative is part of the Getty’s Open Content Program, which will make images from the Getty’s illustrious collection available for publications, research and a variety of personal uses.

The works recently made available on the Getty’s site include drawings, watercolors, artists’ sketchbooks, rare prints, architectural drawings and photographs. Before launching the Open Content Program, the Getty’s images were only available upon request, for a fee and carried certain terms and conditions. The images will now be available for direct download on the website, free of charge. Officials plan to keep adding works to the Getty’s site until all of the Institute-owned or public domain images are available.    

Getty President and CEO, Jim Cuno, said, This project goes to the heart of the Getty’s mission to share its collections and research as widely as possible. We look forward to seeing the ingenious, creative and thoughtful ways these images are being used.”

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Friday, 11 October 2013 17:59

Late Goya Painting Acquired by Meadows Museum

The Meadows Museum of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas has acquired a major work by Francisco Goya. Portrait of Mariano Goya (1827), which was acquired thanks to the Meadows Foundation and a gift from Mrs. Eugene McDermott, has not been on display in over 40 years. Completed just months before Goya’s death, the painting, which features the artist’s grandson, is one of less than a dozen portraits painted by the artist between 1820 and 1828. The masterpiece is currently on view at the museum.

Mark A. Roglán, the Linda P. and William A. Custard Director of the Meadows Museum and Centennial Chair in the Meadows School of the Arts, SMU, said, “The Meadows Museum will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2015, and the acquisition of this extraordinary work by Goya is a wonderful way to begin that celebration…The work stands as the pivotal linchpin in our growing collection. Indeed the acquisition of the Goya caps off many notable additions to our collection this year and marks a new phase in achieving Algur H. Meadows’ dream to create a ‘small Prado in Texas.’”

Spanning from the 10th century through the 21st, the Meadows has one of the foremost collections of Spanish art in the world. In addition to Portrait of Mariano Goya, the museum has five other Goya paintings and complete, first edition sets of all of his major print series.

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Maine’s Portland Museum of Art is currently hosting the exhibition Winslow Homer’s Civil War in conjunction with the Maine Civil War Trail’s statewide series of special displays commemorating the 150th anniversary of the conflict. The exhibition features 29 wood engravings and other prints drawn from the museum’s permanent collection.

Homer, one of the most celebrated American artists of all time, first gained national recognition for images of the Civil War that he produced for the magazine Harper’s Weekly. An artist-correspondent amidst Union troops, Homer had a first-hand view of the war, which he translated into unconventional interpretations of the struggle. Rather than illustrating battle scenes exalting the men, Homer humanized the event, creating scenes of day-to-day life in a soldier camp and the impact of the war on women and the home front.

Winslow Homer’s Civil War will be on view at the Portland Museum of Art through December 8, 2013.

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