EXHIBITS OF SPECIAL INTEREST

 

Washington, DC

National Gallery of Art
Masterpieces of American Furniture from the Kaufman Collection, 1700–1830
Ongoing
One of the largest and most refined collections of early American furniture in private hands—acquired over the course of five decades by George M. and Linda H. Kaufman—was promised to the National Gallery of Art in October 2010. A new installation on the Ground Floor of the West Building will highlight nearly 100 examples of early American furniture and decorative arts from this distinguished collection, including French floral watercolors by Pierre Joseph Redouté and American, Chinese, and French porcelains. In addition, the installation will include paintings by celebrated American artists in the Gallery's collection such as Gilbert Stuart.

 

Grecian Couch, attributed to John Finlay (1777–1851) and Hugh Finlay (1781–1831), Baltimore, 1810–1830, walnut and cherry; paint; gold leaf, promised gift of George M. and Linda H. Kaufman



Wilmington, DE

Winterthur
For in-car GPS and online mapping services, use: 5105 Kennett Pike, Wilmington, DE 19807


Boston, MA

Massachusetts Historical Society
The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections
October 4, 2013 through January 17, 2014
Boston has been the home of an important furniture trade since the mid-17th century. As part of the Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture collaborative project, the Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) presents an exhibition covering several centuries of a rich and varied furniture-making tradition with an emphasis on a selection of important objects from private collections that are rarely seen by the public. Supplemented with complementary materials from the Society’s extraordinary collections—including relevant portraits, account books and ledgers, inventories, trade cards, and bill heads—the exhibition will explore furniture as history and provide a look at Boston’s distinctive urban tradition.

 

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA)
Art of the Netherlands in the 17th Century and the Alan and Simone Hartman Galleries Debut
The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), has opened a magnificent suite of five galleries, including the newly renovated Art of the Netherlands in the 17th Century Gallery and the Alan and Simone Hartman Galleries, which showcase nearly every facet of art from Great Britain. After a closure of almost a year, the Art of the Netherlands Gallery reopens with 30 paintings by Dutch and Flemish masters, including seven paintings by Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn. Illustrating the full range of art production in the Netherlands, the gallery includes fine landscapes, still lifes, genre scenes, portraits, and religious histories, complemented by decorative art objects. The renovation was made possible by Rose-Marie and Eijk van Otterloo, who have also loaned 18 works to the MFA that are currently on display.

In addition, two 18th-century period rooms from Great Britain have been reinstalled at the MFA as part of the Alan and Simone Hartman Galleries. They are the Newland House Drawing Room, which has not been on view at the Museum since the 1970s, and the Hamilton Palace Dining Room. Complementing them is a gallery for British Art 1560-1830. The Hartman Galleries showcase paintings, furniture, silver, ceramics, and works on paper. The Hartman Collection of silver is on display in the Hamilton Palace room and includes superb examples of silver made in London by Huguenot craftsmen between 1680 and 1760.

Symposium: New Thoughts on Old Things: Four Centuries of Furnishing the Northeast
The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), Colonial Society of Massachusetts, and Massachusetts Historical Society will co-sponsor a symposium devoted to new scholarly research on the design, production, and circulation of furnishings in New England on October 4, 2013, from 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. New Thoughts on Old Things: Four Centuries of Furnishing the Northeast will feature keynote speaker Ethan Lasser, Margaret S. Winthrop Associate Curator of American Art at Harvard, along with a select group of emerging scholars. The event is associated with Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture—a collaborative of 11 institutions celebrating furniture and furniture-making in Massachusetts. For more information on the Four Centuries initiative and events, please visit: http://www.fourcenturies.org/


Brockton, MA

Fuller Craft Museum
Made in Massachusetts: Studio Furniture of the Bay State
October 12, 2012-February 9, 2014

Since the mid-1950s, Massachusetts has experienced a growing interest in furniture made by individual studio artists.  Much of this flowering reflects new directions in crafts taking place in America.  While some forms derived from colonial and traditional prototypes continued to dominate the field, such as custom bench work thriving in the North Bennet Street School, a new wave of stylistically innovative furniture styles emerged in the 1960s. With the exhibition Made in Massachusetts: Studio Furniture of the Bay State, Fuller Craft Museum will feature works by studio furniture artists working in Boston, as well as throughout Massachusetts.  Their works represent rich and diverse contributions to the field of fine furniture making over the past 30 years.


Concord, MA

Concord Museum
The Best Workman in the Shop: Cabinetmaker William Munroe of Concord
September 13, 2013 – March 23, 2014

Concord cabinetmaker William Munroe helped make some of the most beautiful clocks Massachusetts ever produced. The Best Workman in the Shop explores his remarkable career through the objects he made, his detailed shop records, and his 1839 autobiographical account—an incomparable archive of a Federal-era craftsman. The grandson of Patriot activists, Munroe arrived in Concord in 1800, with a set of tools and patterns for making clock cases and $3.40 in cash. Forty years later he proudly recorded having more than $20,000 in assets, a remarkable achievement for a craftsman.


Deerfield, MA

Historic Deerfield
Furniture Masterworks: Tradition and Innovation in Western Massachusetts
September 28, 2013 – December 31, 2014

Farms established during the 17th century along the banks of the Connecticut River in western Massachusetts—New England’s early frontier—prospered in the 18th century, supporting a network of cabinetmakers who crafted furniture in a distinctive regional idiom. In homes occupied by generations of farming families, carved and painted oak chests mingled with furniture following the latest fashions in Boston, New York and Philadelphia, interpreted to fit local taste and crafted in native black cherry. In the early 19th century, as industrialization transformed the rural landscape, innovation in furniture design intensified, leading to surprisingly original creations. “Furniture Masterworks: Tradition and Innovation” explores and celebrates western Massachusetts’ first 150 years of furniture-making with 58 objects drawn from Historic Deerfield’s collections that best exemplify the region’s signature contribution to American design history and the emergence of a national identity.


Sturbridge, MA

Old Sturbridge Village
Delightfully Designed: The Furniture and Life of Nathan Lombard
October 19, 2013 – May 4, 2014 

Delightfully designed and intricately inlayed, the furniture of Nathan Lombard stands out among the rich traditions of cabinetmaking found in rural Massachusetts in the early 1800s. Nathan’s furniture has a vitality and charm that easily captures the eye even today, with inlays of charismatic eagles, elaborate vines, and floral motifs and unusual features like reverse concave quarter-columns emboldened with inlay. As a boy raised in Brimfield, married in Sturbridge, and situated in Sutton, Nathan’s story is a very local one and OSV’s exhibit will represent the largest assembling of Lombard’s furniture since they left his workshop.  New discoveries – including family narratives, early daguerreotypes of the Lombard family, and personal family artifacts – help bring the Lombard family to life.  Hand in hand with celebrating his furniture, OSV looks forward to celebrating Nathan Lombard the cabinetmaker, father, and community member, and revealing the true person behind these extraordinary objects. For more information, visit www.osv.org/lombard.


Plymouth, NH

Museum of the White Mountains
Passing Through, The Allure of the White Mountains
Through February 16, 2014

This first exhibition in the new museum, employs images, interpretive panels, films and interactive technologies to invite visitors to question the influence of time and space on human connections with nature.  Focusing on five distinct areas—Crawford Notch, Mount Washington Valley (eastern slopes), the Summit of Mount Washington, the Northern Presidentials, and Franconia Notch—visitors will think more deeply about the White Mountain region and the evolving human experience of it.

Each of five distinct spaces of the exhibition will have landscape paintings that capture the diverse perspectives of the landscape.  Some of the images depict the mountains as dark and foreboding, looming over the valleys and creating a sense of isolation and loneliness. Other images convey a sense of majesty or transcendence over the valleys where the mountains evoke a sense of awe, but they do not tell the whole story.

The romantic layers will be stripped away to reveal the changing relationship between humans and the White Mountains through historical maps, postcards, prints, photographs, stereoscopic views, diaries, letters and literature. The stories of tragedy and survival will engage the viewers’ senses and allow them to experience the interpretation on an emotional, as well as an intellectual, level. The exhibit will engage participants in debates that are crucial to understanding how human interaction with the mountains changed with alterations in nineteenth-century conceptions of time and space.

At the White Mountains, c. 1875,
Chromolithograph

Printed by Frederick Gleason,
Courtesy of the New Hampshire Historical Society

 



New York, NY

Bard Graduate Center

William Aikman. William Kent, ca. 1723–25. Oil on canvas. National Portrait Gallery, London, NPG 6063.

William Kent: Designing Georgian Britain
September 20, 2013 to February 9, 2014

The first major exhibition to examine the life and career of one of the most influential designers in eighteenth-century Britain. Visitors will discover Kent’s genius, through nearly 200 examples of his elaborate drawings for architecture, gardens, and sculpture, along with furniture, silver, paintings, illustrated books, and through new documentary films. As most of his best-known surviving works are in Britain’s great country houses, the exhibition is rich in loans from private as well as public collections. Organized by the Bard Graduate Center in collaboration with the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the exhibition is curated by Susan Weber (BGC) and Julius Bryant (V&A). It will travel to the V&A where it will be on view from March 22 to July 13, 2014.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art


Coat (Wentke) (detail), Netherlands, mid-18th century. Textile: India, 1725-50, Cotton, drawn and painted resist and mordant, dyed. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Purchase, Isabel Shults Fund, 2012.

From exhibit Interwoven Globe: The Worldwide Textile Trade, 1500-1800


 


Pittsburgh, PA

Carnegie Museum of Art

Bakewell, Page and Bakewell,
American, under name 1813–1827;
Water decanters, 1818–1819, glass;
Carnegie Museum of Art,
Ailsa Mellon Bruce Fund,
2011.16.A–.B, 2011.8.A–.B



 


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