Artwork of the Week

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Mar. 11 Art Minute: Louise Bourgeois, “Shackle Necklace”

Posted on Friday, March 11th, 2016

Louise Bourgeois designed this necklace in the 1940s as a personal statement against the violence she had witnessed against prisoners during the Spanish Civil War (1936–39), who were asphyxiated by shackles of this shape. It was also designed as a comment about the female state, a metaphor for the social, political, and legal constraints of […]

Mar. 4 Art Minute: Rachel Ruysch, “Flower Still Life”

Posted on Friday, March 4th, 2016

From the caterpillar crawling along the stem of a flower, to the browning leaves riddled with holes by hungry insects, Rachel Ruysch has captured every detail of a wild profusion of cut flowers. Such a painting could be appreciated on two levels. A viewer might simply enjoy the skill of the artist and the luscious […]

Feb. 24 Art Minute: Aminah Robinson, “Dad’s Journey,” from “The Ragmund Series: Volume 8, Slave Epics”

Posted on Wednesday, February 24th, 2016

Columbus, Ohio-based artist Aminah Robinson devoted her career to telling and passing on the untold stories of her family, the black community where she grew up, and the often unsung contributions to American history by African Americans. As part of her 10 unique, handmade volumes of The Ragmund Series of books (acquired by the Toledo […]

Feb. 19 Art Minute: Fred Wilson, “Iago’s Mirror”

Posted on Friday, February 19th, 2016

In Shakespeare’s Othello, Iago attempts to destroy the lives and reputations of all who surround him, particularly the black Venetian officer Othello. It is deliberately unclear what Iago’s motivations are for his murderous vendettas—revenge, bigotry, jealousy, a love of deception? Iago’s Mirror was made in traditional 18th-century Rococo style by Murano glassworkers in Venice, according to artist […]

Feb. 12 Art Minute: Alvin Loving, “Dan”

Posted on Friday, February 12th, 2016

When he rose to prominence in the 1960s, Detroit-born African American abstract artist Al Loving’s work was characterized by careful and calculated studies of pure geometric forms. Dan was created at a pivotal turning point in his career—when Loving began to abandon his signature aesthetic in favor of more fluid, large-scale works, often composed through […]

Feb 5. Art Minute: Therman Statom, “HYDRA”

Posted on Friday, February 5th, 2016

What does a museum mean to an individual, to a community? In October 1995, Therman Statom asked himself this question a he visited the Toledo Museum of Art to participate in an artist residency program. Statom returned to his studio in California and continued to reflect on the Museum’s collection and environment. They became the […]

Jan. 29 Art Minute: Canaletto, “View of the Riva degli Schiavoni, Venice”

Posted on Monday, January 25th, 2016

In the age of the Grand Tour, when travel to the famous sites of continental Europe marked the finishing touch of every young gentleman’s education, art was the ultimate souvenir. Demand rose for paintings of a city or site that were faithful enough to identify the precise location. The son of a prominent designer of […]

Jan. 22 Art Minute: Edouard Vuillard, “La Salle Clarac”

Posted on Monday, January 18th, 2016

In an ornate gallery in the Musée du Louvre in Paris, a man and three women (one only partially visible at the left) look at, read about, and contemplate Greek antiquities. While capturing contemporary Parisian life, La Salle Clarac is also an image about the act of looking at art. Edouard Vuillard encourages us to […]

Jan. 15 Art Minute: Gustave Doré, “The Scottish Highlands”

Posted on Friday, January 15th, 2016

The rugged, cloud-wreathed mountains in this painting dwarf the hunter and his dogs in the foreground. This contrast of scale between human and nature communicated the sense of awe many 19th-century travelers felt in the Scottish Highlands, romanticized as one of the last unspoiled corners of the British Isles. French artist Gustave Doré made his […]

Jan. 8 Art Minute: Edward Steichen, “Isadora Duncan in the Parthenon, Athens”

Posted on Friday, January 8th, 2016

The founder of Modern Dance, Isadora Duncan (1877–1927) traveled the world promoting her ideas on free and natural movement, women’s rights, and dance as a “high” art. She was particularly interested in the simple, natural dances of the ancient world as represented by classical sculpture and Greek vases, dancing in free-flowing drapery, with bare feet […]