Note: Please discard previous calendars. This information is current as of January 2012.
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Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe
October 14, 2012–January 21, 2013
This exhibition explores the wealth of European art to reveal the little known presence of Africans and their descendants in Renaissance society and the many roles—saints, slaves, aristocrats, farmers, artists and diplomats—they played there. Featuring the period from late 1400s to the early 1600s and artists from Gerard David to Peter Paul Rubens, the portraits at the core of this show provide a window on an unsuspected facet of a society deeply impacted by the expanding worldview of the Age of Exploration. This show of 73 works is organized by the Walters and will travel to the Princeton University Art Museum February 16–June 9, 2013.
New Eyes on America: The Genius of Richard Caton Woodville
March 10–June 2, 2013
Painter of iconic works of American genre, Richard Caton Woodville (1825–55) led a life of paradox. Born and raised in Baltimore, he produced most of his paintings in Europe, where he died at age 30. Although he left behind fewer than 20 paintings, his images were widely known in his time through reproduction as premium prints. His beautifully crafted paintings contain humorous characterizations of contemporary life, realistic depictions of period interiors and a sense of a narrative moment frozen in time, giving viewers many points of access to a fascinating period of American and European history. In this first exhibition devoted to Woodville since 1967, the Walters’ rich holdings and several key loans will be assembled to explore the biography, historical and social context, and contemporary reception of this engaging painter. The exhibition will travel to The Mint Museum in Charlotte June 30–November 3, 2013.
The Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize Finalists Exhibition
June 29–August 11, 2013
The Walters Arts Museum and the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts present the Sondheim Artscape Prize: 2013 Finalists. Artists compete for top honors and a $25,000 fellowship in the Greater Baltimore area’s most prestigious arts competition. The prize assists in furthering the career of a visual artist or visual artist collaborators living and working in this region. Held in conjunction with Artscape, America’s largest free arts festival, the finalists and semifinalists exhibitions are presented in partnership with the Walters and Maryland Institute College of Art. The competition winner will be announced at the awards ceremony at the Walters on Saturday, July 13, 2013.
Egypt’s Mysterious Book of the Faiyum
October 6, 2013–January 5, 2014
The Book of the Faiyum is an exquisitely illustrated papyrus from Greco-Roman Egypt. One of the most intriguing ancient representations of a place ever found, the papyrus depicts the Faiyum oasis, located to the west of the Nile, as a center of prosperity and ritual. For the first time in over 150 years, major sections owned by the Walters Art Museum and the Morgan Library & Museum, separated since the manuscript was divided and sold in the 19th century, will be reunited. Egyptian jewelry, papyri, statues, reliefs and ritual objects will illuminate the religious context that gave rise to this enigmatic text, which celebrates the crocodile god Sobek and his special relationship with the Faiyum. The exhibition will travel to the Roemer- und Pelizaeus-Museum Hildesheim, Germany.
Ikebana: Contemporary Japanese Vases & Flowers
February 23–May 11, 2014
Developing gradually over several centuries, the Japanese art of flower arranging, or ikebana, has inspired the creation of extraordinary ceramic containers. This exhibition outlines the history of some of Japan’s major schools of ikebana and displays a wide variety of contemporary ceramics created in harmony with the most modern floral conventions. Inspired by the philosophies, literature and aesthetics at the heart of ikebana, the vessels displayed in this show will be joined by an ever-changing array of floral arrangements created by master designers from Japan and the United States.
The Scottish Colourists
June 15–August 31, 2014
Who were the Scottish Colourists and what was their contribution to European art in the first three decades of the 20th century? This exhibition of approximately 30 paintings showcases the work of Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell, John Duncan Fergusson, George Leslie Hunter and Samuel John Peploe. Their vivid works were inspired by Whistler, Manet, Matisse and Cézanne, as well as artistic traditions closer to their Scottish homeland. They sought out subjects that pulsated with light and color, painting in the South of France, Paris and on the Scottish island of Iona, famous for its white sands and turquoise seas. In the studio they produced still lifes which, like their landscapes, show a mastery of dazzling color and pattern.
African Presence: Student Response
September 15, 2012–February 3, 2013
The Walters Art Museum worked with five middle schools from Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Anne Arundel County to create a focus show related to the special exhibition Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe on view October 14, 2012–January 21, 2013. An educator visited each school to discuss the themes of the exhibition. The students created their own artworks, including a mural, diptych, book, mixed-media collages and digital media pieces, in response to portraits in the exhibition.
Diadem and Dagger: Jewish Silversmiths of Yemen
October 27, 2012–January 21, 2013
This focus show of 28 objects celebrates Yemeni-Jewish silverwork, dating between the 18th and the 19th century. It is the first of two small-scale focus shows exploring Jewish communities of the Islamic world. The aim is to highlight the ways Jews both shared and contributed to Islamic art and culture while maintaining their Jewish identity. From the inception of Islam in the seventh century, Jewish and Muslim communities co-existed in Yemen, although few Jews live there today. Yemeni-Jewish craftsmen created superb silver pieces characterized by elaborate granulation and filigree for Muslims and Jews. The collection consists of headpieces, bracelets, necklaces and belt buckles as well as daggers for the Muslim elite. Many are dated and carry the name of the Jewish silversmith and Muslim ruler.
Threshold to the Sacred: The Ark Door of Cairo’s Ben Ezra Synagogue
March 2–May 26, 2013
This focus show highlights a work of exceptional historical importance jointly owned by the Walters Art Museum and the Yeshiva University Museum—an intricately decorated and inscribed wood panel from a Torah ark, a special cupboard that holds the sacred Jewish scripture. The panel is believed to come from the Ben Ezra synagogue of Old Cairo (Fostat), Egypt, which has captivated public imagination for over a century. It is the site of the 19th-century discovery of the Cairo Geniza, a treasure trove of documents on medieval Jewish life around the Mediterranean. This exhibition presents Geniza documents, Ben Ezra synagogue photographs and art from Jewish and Muslim artisans, together with conservation research. This is the second of two small-scale exhibitions that explore Jewish communities of the Islamic world. A version of this exhibition will travel to the Yeshiva University Museum in New York City October 6, 2013–Februrary 10, 2014.
New Eyes on America: Student Response
March 16–June 9, 2013
The Walters Art Museum is working with five high schools from Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Frederick County to create a focus show related to the special exhibition New Eyes on America: The Genius of Richard Caton Woodville. Students received a visit from a museum educator who introduced exhibition themes, including new forms of technology and communication such as the telegraph and penny press—both characteristic of 19th-century America. From October through December, the students spent time considering and discussing the Woodville exhibition and created artworks in response. Students developed projects ideas, and since technology plays such a significant role in teenagers’ lives today, the majority of the works will contain a digital component.
Site Unseen. Gregory Vershbow
July 6–September 8, 2013
This exhibition of photographs by contemporary artist Gregory Vershbow explores the interactions of art objects within environments and circumstances ordinarily beyond public view. In storage facilities and conservation laboratories, and at monuments under restoration, Vershbow photographs art objects wrapped in plastic, protected by foam, nested in boxes and set in surprising juxtapositions with other objects from different eras. The exhibition features photographs taken at the Walters Art Museum side-by-side with images from museums and monuments in the United States and abroad. Vershbow’s photographs picture the private lives of artifacts and invite imaginative considerations of the new possible meanings that objects may reveal when observed in unexpected settings.
Living by the Book: Monks, Nuns and Their Manuscripts
July 13–September 29, 2013
Today, medieval books are treated as works of art, untouchable treasures to be locked away in cabinets. Yet many were intended for regular use as vital components of everyday life for monks and nuns, and their way of life was, in turn, crucial for the creation and preservation of manuscripts. In the vibrant culture of the monastic community, new and innovative devotional texts and images were created, while secular knowledge, including music, history, science, grammar, and classical literature, was also actively enjoyed and preserved. This exhibition, of approximately 20 books, will explore the life of the monastery through the variety of books that were created, used, cherished, glossed, worn down and palimpsested by those who lived there over the centuries.
Jacob Lawrence’s Genesis Series
September 14–December 8, 2013
Painter Jacob Lawrence is known for using a series format to render in colorful expressive imagery and text the narrative stories of historical African American figures like Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman. Each of the eight works on view in Jacob Lawrence’s Genesis Series (1990) describes a passage from the book of Genesis in the King James version of the Bible. The series reflects Lawrence’s youthful memories of passionate sermons about the Creation given by ministers at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem where he was baptized in 1932. The Genesis Series, loaned from Eddie and Sylvia Brown’s Baltimore collection, features the same unity and visual eloquence of his earlier series and has a powerful, expressive impact.
HOURS: Museum hours are Wednesday through Sunday 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Thursdays 5–9 p.m.
ADMISSION: General admission to the permanent collection is free. Special exhibitions with admission fees will be free during Constellation Thursday Nights from 5–9 p.m. Prices are subject to change and may vary for special exhibitions.
LOCATION: The Walters is located in the historic Mt. Vernon Cultural District in downtown Baltimore, at the corner of North Charles and Centre streets, only 10 blocks from the Inner Harbor.
PARKING: A lighted parking lot, with parking attendant, is located directly across from the Walters at Centre and Cathedral streets. A discounted rate is provided when the parking ticket is validated inside the museum.
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