The Kimbell Art Museum will be one of only three museums in the US to show masterworks from the National Galleries of Scotland next year. KERA’s Jerome Weeks reports fifty-five oil paintings from the Renaissance through such modern greats as Picasso and Max Ernst will be on loan.
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It’s one thing to have several rooms full of Old Masters visiting Fort Worth. The Kimbell arranges that almost every other year. But the National Galleries of Scotland is one of the finest museums there is. It’s frequently overlooked by Americans because of all that … stuff in London. But Botticelli to Braque doesn’t just feature some remarkable artworks. It includes some real rarities. A Vermeer, for instance. In the entire world, there are only 35 paintings by the 17th century Dutch master.
Eric Lee is the Kimbell’s director. He says, “There’s so many works by major artists not seen in the Kimbell’s collection or in any collection in Texas. So we’re thrilled to be showing works by Vermeer, Boticelli and Velazquez.”
The National Galleries of Scotland is the umbrella organization containing the country’s three major museums: the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery and the National Gallery of Modern Art. That explains the 400-year range of paintings in the exhibition.
The selection, Lee says, was made by the curators in Edinburgh along with administrators at the Kimbell, the de Young in San Francisco and the Frick Collection in New York City (which will be getting the paintings first, but only ten of them, because of the limited size of its gallery space. “The selection was made to highlight the riches of the [Scottish] museum,” says Lee — which jibes with what Scottish museum officials told the New York Times: The works are being loaned out to help increase the museum’s profile and to encourage tourism (recall the above: most Americans completely overlook the National Galleries of Scotland)
Botticelli to Braque will be at the Kimbell from June 28 to September 20th next year. Among the oil paintings included in the show are the museum’s prized Botticelli, “The Virgin Adoring the Sleeping Christ Child,” as well as paintings by El Greco, Degas, Gauguin and even one by Richard Dadd. He’s the Victorian artist best known for his fantastical portraits of fairies. The painting coming to Fort Worth is not one of Dadd’s fairy paintings.
But it is one he completed after being committed to the Bedlam psychiatric asylum.
The full release:
KIMBELL ANNOUNCES MAJOR LOAN FROM THE NATIONAL GALLERIES OF SCOTLAND
Botticelli to Braque: Masterpieces from the National Galleries of Scotland
March 7–May 31, 2015, de Young, San Francisco
June 28–September 20, 2015, Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, Texas
FORT WORTH—-The de Young and the Kimbell Art Museum are pleased to announce Botticelli to Braque: Masterpieces from the National Galleries of Scotland, a selection of paintings from Scotland’s premier art collections.
The 55 paintings in the exhibition span a period of more than 400 years (1490–1932) and include some of the greatest holdings of the Scottish National Gallery, Scottish National Portrait Gallery and Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art—-the three institutions that comprise the National Galleries of Scotland in Edinburgh. Ten paintings in the exhibition, all from the Scottish National Gallery, will first be presented at the Frick Collection in New York City as Masterpieces from the Scottish National Gallery, on view there from November 5, 2014, through February 1, 2015.
“The National Galleries of Scotland are delighted to be able to showcase key works from the Scottish national collection at three of the preeminent art museums in the USA,” said Sir John Leighton, director-general of the National Galleries of Scotland. “We hope that visitors to the exhibitions will be enchanted by the range of superb works on show, and we encourage them to visit Scotland and see the rest of the collection at the three sites in Edinburgh.”
The paintings from the Scottish National Gallery include many of the major schools of art—-Italian, French and Dutch, in addition to Scottish. Many of these works have never been seen in the United States, including Sandro Botticelli’s Virgin Adoring the Sleeping Christ Child (c. 1490), which has not been exhibited outside of Scotland for more than 150 years. Other artists include the Renaissance masters Titian and Paolo Veronese; the 17th-century painters El Greco, Diego Velázquez, Sir Anthony van Dyck, Frans Hals, Jan Lievens, Rembrandt van Rijn and Johannes Vermeer; and such 19th-century figures as Camille Pissarro, Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, John Singer Sargent, Paul Gauguin and Paul Cézanne. The exhibition will also feature celebrated Scottish painters Allan Ramsay and Sir Henry Raeburn.
Additional pieces from the Scottish National Portrait Gallery will include canvases by Van Dyck, William Dobson, Sir David Wilkie and Richard Dadd. From the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art will come key paintings by Edouard Vuillard, Pablo Picasso, André Derain, Pierre Bonnard, Henri Matisse and Max Ernst. A particular highlight of the exhibition will be Georges Braque’s Candlestick (1911), among the first Cubist paintings to incorporate the written word.
“Both the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and the Kimbell Art Museum have a long tradition of presenting works from acclaimed museums not readily accessible to our publics,” said Colin B. Bailey, director of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. “Botticelli to Braque is a remarkable opportunity to view a group of masterpieces from three venerable institutions that together include outstanding examples by some of the greatest painters from the Renaissance to the early modern period.”
“The exhibition, drawn from one of the world’s finest collections of European art, will offer visitors in both San Francisco and Fort Worth the chance to discover new works by painters already represented in their own cities—-artists like El Greco, Watteau and Monet,” said Kimbell director Eric M. Lee. “Equally important is the opportunity to encounter rarely seen masterpieces by Botticelli and Vermeer, among the best-loved painters in history.”
For more information on Botticelli to Braque: Masterpieces from the National Galleries of Scotland in San Francisco, please visit deyoungmuseum.org.
For more information on the presentation in Fort Worth, please visit kimbellart.org.
This exhibition is organized by the National Galleries of Scotland.
Golden Gate Park, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, San Francisco, CA
Open 9:30 a.m.–5:15 p.m. Tuesdays–Sundays; open select holidays; closed most Mondays
Kimbell Art Museum
3333 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth, TX
Open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays–Thursdays and Saturdays; noon–8 p.m. Fridays; noon–5 p.m. Sundays; closed Mondays
About the National Galleries of Scotland
The National Galleries of Scotland (NGS) look after one of the world’s finest collections of Western art, ranging from the Middle Ages to the present day. These holdings include the National Collection of Scottish art which is displayed in an international context. Every year the NGS welcome over 1.5 million visitors from Scotland and the rest of the world to our three Galleries sited in Edinburgh. These include the Scottish National Gallery, the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.
The Scottish National Gallery houses the national collection of fine art from the early Renaissance to the end of the 19th century and includes masterpieces from Raphael, El Greco, Velázquez and Rubens to Van Gogh, Monet, Cézanne, Degas and Gauguin. For a nation of Scotland’s size, the collection is rightfully regarded as one of the very best in the world. The most comprehensive part of the collection covers the history of Scottish painting with all of the major names, including Ramsay, Raeburn, Wilkie and McTaggart, represented in depth.
The Scottish National Portrait Gallery reopened after refurbishment in December 2011. This Gallery is about the people of Scotland—-past and present, famous or forgotten. The portraits are windows into their lives and the displays throughout the beautiful Arts and Crafts building help explain how the men and women of earlier times made Scotland the country it is today. Photography and film also form part of the collection and help to make Scotland’s colorful history come alive.
About the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, comprising the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park and the Legion of Honor in Lincoln Park, is the largest public arts institution in San Francisco.
The de Young originated from the 1894 California Midwinter International Exposition and became the Memorial Museum. Thirty years later, it was renamed in honor of Michael H. de Young, a longtime champion of the museum. The present copper-clad landmark building, designed by Herzog and de Meuron, opened in October 2005. It showcases the institution’s significant collections of American painting, sculpture, and decorative arts from the seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries; art from Africa, Oceania, and the Americas; costume and textile arts; and international contemporary art.
The Legion of Honor was inspired by the French pavilion at San Francisco’s Panama Pacific International Exposition of 1915, which was a replica of the Palais de la Légion d’Honneur in Paris. The museum opened in 1924 in the Beaux Arts-style building designed by George Applegarth on a bluff overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge. Its holdings span four thousand years and include European painting, sculpture, and decorative arts; ancient art from the Mediterranean basin; and the largest collection of works on paper in the American West.
About the Kimbell Art Museum
The Kimbell Art Museum, owned and operated by the Kimbell Art Foundation, is internationally renowned for both its collections and for its architecture. The Kimbell’s collections range in period from antiquity to the 20th century and include European masterpieces by artists such as Fra Angelico, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Poussin, Velázquez, Monet, Picasso and Matisse; important collections of Egyptian and classical antiquities; and Asian, Mesoamerican and African art.
The Museum’s 1972 building, designed by the American architect Louis I. Kahn, is widely regarded as one of the outstanding architectural achievements of the modern era. A second building, designed by world-renowned Italian architect Renzo Piano, opened in 2013 and now provides space for special exhibitions, dedicated classrooms and a 298-seat auditorium with excellent acoustics for music.