Artwork of the Week

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Artwork of the Week: January 17

Posted on Friday, January 17th, 2014

Led by Anton Mauve, the group of Dutch painters known as the Hague School distinguished itself with its exceptional rendering of moody atmospheric effects. Mauve and his contemporaries tried to depict nature and the “simple life” of rural communities that was beginning to be supplanted by the Industrial Revolution and rapid urbanization. Mauve’s use of […]

Artwork of the Week: January 10

Posted on Friday, January 10th, 2014

This blue and white vase was made during the rule of Emperor Kangxi (1662–1722), the longest reigning emperor in China. During this time, the imperial porcelain factory was revived resoundingly thanks to the Emperor’s interest in culture and the arts. The flowers painted on the vase are magnolia blossoms, a symbol of purity and feminine […]

Artwork of the Week: January 3

Posted on Friday, January 3rd, 2014

Known as the Common American Swan in Audubon’s time, now called the Tundra Swan, this majestic bird is here rendered in a carefully hand-colored etching. Part of Audubon’s ambitious Birds of America—an attempt by Audubon to depict every type of bird common to the United States—the print is more than two feet high by more […]

Artwork of the Week: December 27

Posted on Friday, December 27th, 2013

Long before The Party, Marisol’s largest group assemblage, came to the Museum, it traveled to the Venice Biennale in 1968 as a representative of Venezuela (Marisol was born in Paris to Venezuelan parents). As someone who always felt uncomfortable in the 1960s social scene, Marisol chose to display the figures in a setting where none […]

Artwork of the Week: December 20

Posted on Friday, December 20th, 2013

As the leading painter in the Catholic city of Seville, Spain, Murillo was commissioned to paint almost exclusively for the churches and religious orders in the area. Because of his frequent travels to Madrid and Seville’s heavy involvement in international commerce, Murillo was introduced to many different artists and styles of painting. In this painting […]

Artwork of the Week: December 13

Posted on Friday, December 13th, 2013

Kawase Hasui trained in the traditional Japanese painting style as well as the art of traditional woodblock prints, known as ukiyo-e (“pictures of the floating world”). Much of his work focused on landscapes and portraits of Kabuki Theater actors, and in the early 20th century he was approached by the publisher Watanabe Shōzaburō to create […]

Artwork of the Week: December 6

Posted on Friday, December 6th, 2013

Created as a social commentary on 18th-century consumerism, this print is the last in a set of eight engraved by William Hogarth. The series, A Rake’s Progress, centers on a prosperous merchant’s heir and his reckless lifestyle of extravagance. Here, the heir’s overindulgence has led to him being committed to the infamous London mental institution […]

Artwork of the Week: November 29

Posted on Friday, November 29th, 2013

Including a turkey, rooster, hen, three bantam Polish hudins, and their offspring, this painting celebrates the type of fowl owned by wealthy landowners in 17th-century Holland. Melchior d’Hondecoeter was known for his bird pieces of both domestic and exotic birds. He seemingly inherited this joy of animal painting from his artist father, grandfather, and uncle, […]

Artwork of the Week: November 22

Posted on Friday, November 22nd, 2013

This vessel and similar examples came from a workshop that was located near Jerusalem, where the products were sold to pilgrims traveling from all parts of the Mediterranean world, including Egypt. It may have held oil, water, or soil from the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The symbols on the six sides of this type of […]

Artwork of the Week: November 15

Posted on Friday, November 15th, 2013

Beginning as a poster designer, commercial artist, and, briefly, an animator for the Walt Disney Studios, Wayne Thiebaud eventually settled on painting. Starting in the mid-1950s, he focused on painting ordinary and often “blue collar” objects, notably his images of diner foods: hot dogs, pies, ice cream, and hamburgers. Thiebaud painted this typical American truck […]