Friday, November 24, 2017

Exhibition brings together the largest group of original drawings by Michelangelo

Visitors view an oil painting of Michelangelo's 'Last Judgment' by Marcello Venusti at the new Michelangelo exhibit titled 'Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer' at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, November 13, 2017 in New York City. The exhibit opened on Monday to the public and will run through February 12, 2018. Drew Angerer / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / AFP.
NEW YORK---Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer, on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from November 13, 2017, through February 12, 2018, presents a stunning range and number of works by the artist: 133 of his drawings, 3 of his marble sculptures, his earliest painting, and his wood architectural model for a chapel vault. A substantial body of complementary works by his teachers, associates, pupils, and artists who were influenced by him or who worked in collaboration with him are also being displayed for comparison and context. A towering genius in the history of Western art, Michelangelo was celebrated during his long life for the excellence of his disegno, the power of drawing and invention that provided the foundation for all of the arts. For his mastery of drawing, design, sculpture, painting, and architecture, he was called Il divino ("the divine one") by his contemporaries. [More]

Mary's grief powerfully communicated in "Pietà with Donors" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Pietà with Donors, ca. 1515. French. Limestone, traces of polychromy. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1916 (16.31.1).
NEW YORK---Here, Mary's grief over Christ's sacrifice is communicated through simple gestures. At the center, the Virgin Mary crosses her arms upon her chest and bows her head over her son's dead body. Her downward gaze throws her face into shadow, accentuating her sorrow (pietà in Italian). Surprisingly, the scene is witnessed by two individualized figures, whose clothing identifies them as a knight and a bishop. These are the donors, Pons de Gontaut and his brother Armand, Bishop of Sarlat, who commissioned this sculpture for their family funerary chapel. On the left, Armand cradles Christ's head in his outstretched hands, making him into a direct participant in the sacred past. On the right, his brother, clasps his hands and gazes somberly on the scene. Through the sculpture, the brothers assert a privileged place in this private moment, crossing time to witness Mary's grief. [More]

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Cincinnati Art Museum commemorates 500 years since the Reformation with Dürer exhibition

Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528), Germany, Adam and Eve, 1504, engraving, Bequest of Herbert Greer French, 1943.193.
CINCINNATI---Explore a 500-year-old revolution in printmaking technology at the Cincinnati Art Museum’s free special exhibition Albrecht Dürer: The Age of Reformation and Renaissance, on view November 17, 2017–February 11, 2018. The Cincinnati Art Museum is one of several local arts organizations who will commemorate 500 years since Martin Luther issued his 95 theses in 1517, which triggered enormous theological, political and cultural changes throughout Europe. The exhibition features an extensive display of works from Cincinnati Art Museum’s permanent collection, plus works on loan from other museums and collectors, totaling more than 140 pieces by Dürer and his contemporaries. [More]

Transgressive, honest, devastating: the Australian exhibition reframing the male gaze

By Steve Dow
Liam Benson’s The Terrorist – part of a triptych of self-portraits intended to feminise masculine religious extremism. Photograph: Liam Benson/Bathurst Regional Art Gallery
SYDNEY---The Sadness series is part of The Unflinching Gaze, curated by Perram and now showing at Bathurst Regional Gallery: an extraordinary assemblage of provocative photographs from Australia and overseas, interrogating and celebrating the male figure, and privileging the perspective of same-sex attraction. On the same wall, a triptych of self-portraits by Australia’s Liam Benson show the photo artist playing “crusader”, “executioner” and “terrorist”. In each photo, he wears a see-through, embroidered hood intended to feminise masculine religious extremism. There is a thematic connection between these clear examples of hate carried out under the guise of religion and state authoritarianism, and Yang’s Sadness series depicting a lover’s slow death from Aids-related causes. [More]