Artwork Selections for #SlowArtDay 2015

The Walters Art Museum joins organizations worldwide in celebrating Slow Art Day on Saturday April 11, 2015.

Slow Art Day started in 2008 as an experiment in changing the way we view art in a museum environment. Below is a list of 5 works, selected by members of the Baltimore arts community, for you to view for 5 – 10 minutes. At 1 p.m., stop by the Café for a discussion about the experience with other participants.

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The Walters Art Museum Celebrates #heartsforart

You showed your love by voting with a big pink heart or two on Super Thursday and Valentine’s Day. Are you ready for the surprising results?

You showed your love by voting with a big pink heart or two on Super Thursday and Valentine’s Day. Are you ready for the surprising results?

Super Thursday’s top three most-loved works are The Cat Mummy in the Collector’s Study, The Altarpiece with the Passion of Christ in the Northern European Gallery of our Medieval World section, and Trophime Bigot’s Judith Decapitating Holofernes (ca. 1640). On Valentine’s Day The Altarpiece again reigned supreme, along with the combination of the Marten’s Head and Veronese’s Portrait of Countess Livia da Porto Thiene and Her Daughter Deidamia. Our visitors weren’t shy about giving it up for Cordier’s African Venus, the late Medieval Crucified Christ in the Third Floor Lobby, and the inviting Banquet Couch in our Roman collection.

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Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe publication now available for download

The exhibition catalog for Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe is now available to view online or download.

The publication accompanying Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe is now available to view online or download.

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The Wonderous World of the Walters

If you visited the Walters when you were a kid, you know that this museum is truly a “Wonderous World.” That’s the idea behind our fun new TV commercial!

f you visited the Walters when you were a kid, you know that this museum is truly a “Wonderous World.” That's the idea behind our fun new TV commercial!

Barker from Walters Museum on Vimeo.

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We’ve tidied up the Grand Salon and Exoticism Room

In the Salon gallery at the Walters Art Museum, we’ve restored the original theme of each wall (academic art from France, academic art by non-French artists, and military themes). This was done by retrieving paintings from storage. Other new additions can be seen to either side of the magnificent carved sideboard: two still lifes by Simon Saint-Jean, a leading flower- and still-life-painter of the 1830s and 40s.

In the Salon gallery at the Walters Art Museum, we’ve restored the original theme of each wall (academic art from France, academic art by non-French artists, and military themes). This was done by retrieving paintings from storage. Other new additions can be seen to either side of the magnificent carved sideboard: two still lifes by Simon Saint-Jean, a leading flower- and still-life-painter of the 1830s and 40s. Saint-Jean fell dramatically out of favor after the renowned French critic Charles Baudelaire and others attacked the artist’s work as being too yellow due to their golden glow. Punning critics renamed him “Saint-Jean-le-Jaune,” “Saint-John-the-Yellow” in English. The Walters’ painting Still Life with Fruit was badly blackened and lacked a frame. It has now been cleaned and reunited with its original nineteenth-century frame that was relocated in an attic storage area. Another new addition, this time to the Exoticism room, is a painting that also had to spend time in conservation to remove and replace a discolored varnish. Prosper Marilhat’s Landscape with Mosque is a striking early example of a scene painted from studies made by the artist on-the-spot in the Middle East in the 1830s. The newly acquired oil-sketch of a lion by Henry Ossawa Tanner can also be seen in this room, although it will soon be taken off view to receive a new frame.

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An exciting new addition to the Walters Art Museum’s nineteenth-century painting collection: Lion Drinking by Henry Ossawa Tanner

Lion Drinking by Henry Ossawa Tanner

The Walters Art Museum recently purchased at auction a painting by Henry Ossawa Tanner (1859-1937), an African American artist whose reputation has been reassessed with the major exhibition currently touring the United States: Henry Ossawa Tanner: Modern Spirit, organized by the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. The Walters already owns one work by Tanner: a bust of his father, Benjamin Tucker Tanner, purchased though the generosity of Eddie and Sylvia Brown. This work is featured in the exhibition currently touring. Tanner is regarded as one of the most distinguished American painters. He received his training at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia under Thomas Eakins and at the Académie Julian in Paris. After 1895, he lived in Paris and painted religious works inspired by his travels in the Holy Land. The painting just purchased, Lion Drinking, dates from ca.1897 and is probably set in Palestine. It appears closely related to another painting of several lions from around the same date:Lions in the Desert (1897-98) in the Smithsonian Institute, Washington DC. Lion Drinking complements the Walters’ holdings of nineteenth-century art remarkably well as, like the Smithsonian’s painting, the work bares a strong compositional resemblance to a work by Jean-Léon Gérôme, an artist well represented in at the Walters. The new painting will undergo treatment by conservators and get a new frame before being hung in the fourth floor galleries.

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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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