Now On View: Pietro Calvi’s Othello

See the installation of the Walters Art Museum’s newest acquisition, Pietro Calvi’s Othello, and learn more about the artwork.

This week, the Walters Art Museum installed Othello, Pietro Calvi’s stunning bronze and marble bust of Shakespeare’s tragic hero. The sculpture bears striking resemblance to Ira Aldridge, one of the first African-American actors in the nineteenth-century to play the role of Othello in Europe. Associate Curator of 18th- and 19th-Century Art, Jo Briggs, explains the significance of this exciting new acquisition below.

See how the piece was installed:

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Further Revelations on the Walters and its connection to the Monuments Men

Recently, our conservation department has discovered another important connection to the Monuments Men:

This past Sunday, February 9, our auditorium was packed to the rafters for our lecture Monuments Man: The Walters’ Marvin Chauncey Ross. Michael Kurtz, National Archives expert, recounted how the “Monuments Men” tracked and located nearly five million European artworks and cultural treasures stolen by Hitler and the Nazis during WWII. Among them was Marvin Chauncey Ross (1904–1977), the Walters’ first Curator of Medieval Art and Subsequent Decorative Arts. Melissa Wertheimer, Walters’ archives assistant, also shared her fascinating discoveries while researching the Marvin Ross papers at the Walters.

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Unraveling the Mysteries of the Saint Amandus Reliquary

Museum conservators use modern technology to date and identify a 13th century Flemish reliquary. This large, church-shaped shrine once housed the relics of a 7th-century saint who served as a missionary and bishop to the western regions of present-day Belgium. St. Amandus (d. 679) also established a monastery at Elnon, near Tournai (western Belgium), where the monks later commissioned this reliquary to honor his remains.

See how Walters conservators use modern technology to date and identify this 13th century Flemish reliquary:

Learn more about the Walters’ Shrine of Saint Amandus, featured in the exhibition Treasures of Heaven. Visit this interactive presentation.

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Saving Silver

Where there’s silver, there’s tarnish. While getting the tarnish off your flatware might be an occasional inconvenience, to museum curators and conservators, it’s a threat to irreplaceable works of art.

To protect these objects for generations to come, scientists from the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park, have teamed up with conservators from the Walters Art Museum to develop and test a new, high-tech way to protect silver art objects and artifacts, using coatings that are mere nanometers thick.

Where there’s silver, there’s tarnish. While getting the tarnish off your flatware might be an occasional inconvenience, to museum curators and conservators, it’s a threat to irreplaceable works of art.

To protect these objects for generations to come, scientists from the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park, have teamed up with conservators from the Walters Art Museum to develop and test a new, high-tech way to protect silver art objects and artifacts, using coatings that are mere nanometers thick.

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An Ideal Climate for The Ideal City: Constructing an In-Frame Vitrine

Paintings are often requested for loans to exhibitions in other museums. To ensure that they remain in a safe, stable environment from the time they leave the Walters to the time they return, especially vulnerable paintings are enclosed in a climate-controlled, in-frame vitrine, made for the individual piece. The vitrine ensures that the encapsulated painting will remain in the Walters’ relative humidity outside the museum walls. Our video demonstrates the vitrine-making process on one of the Walters’ most famous paintings.

Paintings are often requested for loans to exhibitions in other museums. To ensure that they remain in a safe, stable environment from the time they leave the Walters to the time they return, especially vulnerable paintings are enclosed in a climate-controlled, in-frame vitrine, made for the individual piece. The vitrine ensures that the encapsulated painting will remain in the Walters’ relative humidity outside the museum walls. Our video demonstrates the vitrine-making process on one of the Walters’ most famous paintings.

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Revealing the Lost Writings of Archimedes

How do you read a two-thousand-year-old manuscript that has been erased, cut up, written on and painted over? With a powerful particle accelerator, of course!

How do you read a two-thousand-year-old manuscript that has been erased, cut up, written on and painted over? With a powerful particle accelerator, of course! Ancient books curator William Noel tells the fascinating story behind the Archimedes palimpsest, a Byzantine prayer book containing previously-unknown original writings from ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes and others.

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Our New Works of Art Website

If you’ve visited our website recently, you’ve probably noticed our extensive online collection of artwork. If you haven’t, now is a great time to see our collection in an interesting new way. We’ve recently redesigned our works of art website. There’s plenty to see and do.

If you’ve visited our website recently, you’ve probably noticed our extensive online collection of artwork. If you haven’t, now is a great time to see our collection in an interesting new way. We’ve recently redesigned our works of art website. There’s plenty to see and do.

What’s new online?

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