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The Diary: Three Centuries of Private Lives on View at The Morgan Library and Museum
Miniature Dutch almanac and blank book, 1776. Bequest of Julia P. Wightman, 1994.
NEW YORK, NY.- Charlotte Brontë (1816 1855) relied on her diary to escape stifling work as a schoolteacher; Tennessee Williams (1911 1983) confided his loneliness and self-doubt; John Steinbeck (1902 1968) struggled to compose The Grapes of Wrath, and Bob Dylan (b. 1941) sketched his way through a concert tour.

For centuries, people have turned to private journals to document their days, sort out creative problems, help them through crises, comfort them in solitude or pain, or preserve their stories for the future. As more and more diarists turn away from the traditional notebook and seek a broader audience through web journals, blogs, and social media, a new exhibition at The Morgan Library & Museum explores how and why we document our everyday lives. Drawn from the Morgan’s own extraordinary holdings, The Diary: Three Centuries of Privates Lives is on view from January 21 through May 22, 2011.

With over seventy items on view, the exhibition raises questions about this pervasive practice: what is a diary? Must it be a private document? Who is the audience for the unfolding stories of our lives ourselves alone, our families, or a wider group? The diaries on view allow us to observe, in personal terms, the birth of such great works of art as Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel The Scarlet Letter and Gilbert & Sullivan’s opera The Pirates of Penzance. Momentous public events, from the Boston Tea Party to the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, are marked by individual witnesses. Many diarists, such as Henry David Thoreau (1817 1862) and John Newton (1725 1807), former slave trafficker and author of the hymn "Amazing Grace," look inward, striving to live with integrity. Three great artists in their twenties, all on the brink of fame Joshua Reynolds (1723 1792), Charlotte Brontë, and Kingsley Amis (1922 1995) hone their considerable talents in their private writings. And century after century, many individuals from the famous diarist Samuel Pepys (1633 1703) to Abstract Impressionist painter Charles Seliger (1926 2009) capture memory and mark time by keeping a daily record of the substance of everyday life.



Last Week News

January 20, 2011

Sensual Portrait of Muse by Lovestruck Pablo Picasso Up for Auction at Sotheby's

Old Dog, New Tricks: Researcher from University of Maine's Study IDs 9,400-Year-Old Mutt

Sotheby's to Sell Rare Prints by Paul Gauguin from The Collection Of Stanley J. Seeger

London Art Fair Opens Biggest Show to Date with Over 100 Galleries and Political Tinge

The Famous Thames Whale Goes on Display at the Natural History Museum at Tring

Seattle Art Museum's Picasso Exhibition Surpasses 400,000 Visitors, Breaks Record

The World's Greatest Toy and Train Collection Now on View for the First Time at Sotheby's

Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough Defends Decision to Remove Controversial Video

John Beech: The State of Things on Display at Peter Blum Gallery in Chelsea

Pilar Luna, Pioneer of Mexican Underwater Archeology, Given J.C. Harrington Award

Exhibition of Photographs by Dorothea Lange at Brigham Young University Museum of Art

Rosenbach Museum & Library to Deaccession Paintings by Walter Greaves

Cain Schulte Contemporary Art Starts the New Year with Exhibitions by Matthew Barney and Sandra Munzel

Baltimore Museum of Art Presents Seeing Now: Photography Since 1960

Association of Photographers in London Celebrates Kodachrome with Exhibition

Fry Art Gallery Buys Striking Eric Ravilious Watercolour with Art Fund Help

A Special Exhibition on the Phenomenon James Dean Opens at the Kennedys in Berlin

Scale Model of the Warsaw Ghetto at the "From Holocaust to Revival" Museum

Adjunct Curator at ICP, Okwui Enwezor, Appointed as Director of Haus der Kunst

First British Portrait of a Black African Muslim and Freed Slave Goes on Display

Social Documentary Photographer Milton Rogovin Dies at Age 101 in New York

John Hancock Tower in Boston Selected to Receive AIA Twenty-Five Year Award

The Wallace Collection Announces the Appointment of Dr. Christoph Vogtherr as New Director

Artists, Designers Join Forces for the Second Annual Green Auction at Christie's

Just a Few Months Before Opening, Minefields Circle Jesus' Traditional Baptism Site

Burton Morris Shows His Style of Pop Art at Pop and Contemporary Fine Art in Singapore

Texas Foundation to Sell Matisse Set 'The Backs'

Phillips de Pury & Company Announces the Highlights from Valencia Contemporary Art Collection

January 19, 2011

Retrospective of the Leading Mexican Artist Gabriel Orozco on Display at Tate Modern

Rediscovered Painting by Dutch Artist Rembrandt on Loan at the Toledo Museum of Art

Kai Althoff's Punkt, Absatz, Bluemli (period, paragraph, Bluemli) at Gladstone Gallery

Rutger's Zimmerli Art Museum Returns Rare Renaissance Portrait to Rightful Owners

First British Portrait of a Black African Muslim and Freed Slave Goes on Display

John Hancock Tower in Boston Selected to Receive AIA Twenty-Five Year Award

Adjunct Curator at ICP, Okwui Enwezor, Appointed as Director of Haus der Kunst

Scale Model of the Warsaw Ghetto at the "From Holocaust to Revival" Museum

A Special Exhibition on the Phenomenon James Dean Opens at the Kennedys in Berlin

Social Documentary Photographer Milton Rogovin Dies at Age 101 in New York

Just a Few Months Before Opening, Minefields Circle Jesus' Traditional Baptism Site

Artists, Designers Join Forces for the Second Annual Green Auction at Christie's

The Wallace Collection Announces the Appointment of Dr. Christoph Vogtherr as New Director

Stunning Installation of New Oil Paintings by Carlos Luna at Heather James Fine Art

Stealing the Mystic Lamb: The True Story of the World's Most Coveted Masterpiece

The Enduring Beauty of Jewelry Across the Ages Dazzles in Newark Museum's Lore Ross Jewelry Gallery

A Dynamic Array of Art as Throngs Visit the Second Miami International Art Fair

Group Exhibition to Examine Art and Democracy in Europe

Restoration Of The Much Loved Waterloo Poem by Sue Hubbard

O'Keeffiana: Art and Art Materials from the Extensive Collection of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum

Mixed-Media Artist Katya Bonnenfant Opens Second Exhibition Under New Moniker at Haines Gallery

Art Madrid 2011 Maintains the Number of Galleries and Increases the Quality Level

Roxy Paine's Steel Sculpture Ferment to be Installed in Kansas City Sculpture Park

How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr. Foster? Documentary Traces the Rise of Norman Foster

After 30 Years at Sotheby's, Fergus Lyons Appointed as Head of Furniture at Bonhams

Brooklyn Museum Acquires 18th Century Painting by Agostino Brunias Depicting Colonial Elite

Helsinki Mayor Jussi Pajunen Explores Possible Guggenheim Museum in Finland

Carlton Hobbs Presents Inspired by Antiquity: Classical Influences on 18th and 19th Century Furniture and Works of Art

Texas Foundation to Sell Matisse Set 'The Backs'

January 18, 2011

Mexico's Government Negotiates the Temporary Return of Moctezuma's Headdress

Illuminating Design's Impact on Society: 'Unpacking the Nano' at Cornell's Johnson Art Museum

Archaeologist Investigates Drawings of Prehispanic Sites from the 17th Century

Award-Winning Songwriter Carole Bayer Sager Debuts Abstract Paintings at LA Art House

How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr. Foster? Documentary Traces the Rise of Norman Foster

Roxy Paine's Steel Sculpture Ferment to be Installed in Kansas City Sculpture Park

Art Madrid 2011 Maintains the Number of Galleries and Increases the Quality Level

Helsinki Mayor Jussi Pajunen Explores Possible Guggenheim Museum in Finland

Brooklyn Museum Acquires 18th Century Painting by Agostino Brunias Depicting Colonial Elite

After 30 Years at Sotheby's, Fergus Lyons Appointed as Head of Furniture at Bonhams

O'Keeffiana: Art and Art Materials from the Extensive Collection of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum

Mixed-Media Artist Katya Bonnenfant Opens Second Exhibition Under New Moniker at Haines Gallery

Cleveland Art Museum to Auction More than Two Dozen European Paintings

Salvaged Scotch on Display to Mark 70th Anniversary of SS Politician Grounding

Vargas, Sundblom and Elvgren Masterpieces Anchor Illustration Art Auction in Beverly Hills

"A Serpentine Gesture and Other Prophecies" on View at Le Frac Lorraine

Kutluǧ Ataman & Šejla Kamerić Receive Routes Award from European Cultural Foundation

A New Gallery for Old Bond Street: Thomas Williams to Open New Exhibition Space in March

Norman Rockwell's America...In England Opens to Critical Acclaim!

Helmut Newton Foundation Extends 'Alice Springs' Exhibition Until May 15th

Move For Life! with ArtParis 2011

Newly Discovered Paintings by Hokusai and Important Porcelains in Asia Week Exhibition

New York City Landlord Wants Money from Lennon Suit Auction, Sues Braswell Galleries

Kunsthalle Zürich Presents an Exhibition by Heimo Zobernig, Key Figure in the Austrian Art Scene

Beatles Memorabilia Museum with Thousands of Objects Opens in Buenos Aires

Chinese Teacher Helps Blind Find Confidence in Art

Inscribed 18th Century Mughal Emerald Seal Owned by Officer of the East India Company for Sale at Bonhams

January 17, 2011

Zaragoza Exhibits the Work of French Painter Georges Rouault for the First Time Ever

An Extraordinary Display of Masterpieces Announced for This Year's Edition of TEFAF

Tel Aviv Exhibits the Recently Donated Wolloch Collection of Modern Sculpture

RM Auctions Announces Early Highlights for Debut Sale at the Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este

Newly Discovered by Hokusai, Early Buddhist Sculpture, and Important Porcelains in Asia Week Exhibition

New York City Landlord Wants Money from Lennon Suit Auction, Sues Braswell Galleries

The Kunsthalle Zürich Presents a Solo Exhibition by Heimo Zobernig, Key Figure in the Austrian Art Scene

Beatles Memorabilia Museum with Thousands of Objects Opens in Buenos Aires

Vargas, Sundblom and Elvgren Masterpieces Anchor Illustration Art Auction in Beverly Hills

"A Serpentine Gesture and Other Prophecies" on View at Le Frac Lorraine

Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College Exhibits Work of Contemporary Tibetan Artists

Carlton Rochell Asian Art to Participate in Winter Antiques Show at Park Avenue Armory

Eight Large-Scale Oil Paintings by Los Angeles Artist Christian Vincent at Mike Weiss Gallery

de Saisset Museum Explores the Practice of Veiling through a Thought-Provoking Exhibition

New Photographs and Video by New York and Nepal Based Artist Stuart Hawkins at Zach Feuer Gallery

Twenty-Three Black-and-White Photographs of The Fryes Home on View in Seattle

Internationally Acclaimed Design Firms Choose Glass Artist Paul Housberg for Princeton Project

Tom Lubbock, Illustrator and Chief Art Critic of The Independent, Dies

Morris Museum Presents an Exhibition of an Unsung American Illustrator: Antonio Petruccelli

Steven Holl Architects' Horizontal Skyscraper Wins AIA Institute Honor Award

Thomas Paul Fine Art Presents an Exhibition of Works by the Artist, Harrison Storms

Feedback: Video by Artists Opens at the University of Richmond Museums

Art & Design in Wolverhampton 1850-1970 Featured in Exhibition at the Wolverhampton Art Gallery

Video and Photographic Works by Los Angeles and Maine Based Artist Tad Beck at Samuel Freeman

Salvaged Scotch on Display to Mark 70th Anniversary of SS Politician Grounding

MoMA Film to Present Weeklong Series of Documentaries Featuring Artist Associated with Juxtapoz Magazine

January 16, 2011

Kunsthalle Emden Offers a Comprehensive Review of Franz Radziwill's Career as a Painter

Exhibitions: Art or Propaganda? North Korea Exhibits a Major Show of Official Art in Moscow

Crocker Art Museum Announces a Series of Exhibitions for Its Summer of Impressionism

Andy Warhol: Behind the Camera on Display at the University of Delaware Museums

Influential Element: Exploring the Impact of Water at the Long Beach Museum of Art

An Exhibition of Young and Emerging British and International Artists at Scream Gallery

Cordy Ryman and Brandon Morse in Concurrent Solo Exhibitions at Conner Contemporary Art

Art Institute of Chicago Celebrates Japanese Picture Calendars in Exhibition

Los Angeles Mexican-American Culture Center Stops Work over Found Remains

Heckscher Museum Presents Identity Crisis: Authenticity, Attribution and Appropriation

Valencian Institute of Modern Art Shows Photographs by Bernie DeChant: Brazil and Beyond

The Finnish Capital Celebrates the Darkest Days of the Year with the Season of Light City Festival

Poppy Sebire Brings Together Material and Materialism: Ali Bailey and Jessica Labatte

USC Fisher Museum of Art Announce Exhibition "John Nava: The Making of the Trojan Family Tapestry"

Website Follows Johns Hopkins Archaeologists in Egypt

Bert Green Fine Art Presents Final Two Exhibitions in Current Location

Kunsthaus Zürich Closes Anniversary Year with Best Result Since 1989

Moore Acknowledges Valued Service of Departing Gallery Director & Launches National Search

Alessandra Sanguinetti Presents The Adventures of Guille and Belinda at Le Bal

Major Archaeological Project Examines Interactions That Changed China

January 15, 2011

Fondation Beyeler Exhibition Shows Giovanni Segantini as a Pathfinder of Modernism

Bortolami Presents their Second Solo Exhibition with Michigan-Born Patrick Hill

Museum in The Hague Shows Large-Format Polaroid Photos by Julian Schnabel

Jennifer Bartlett Installs a Single Painting that Stretches More than 158 Feet at The Pace Gallery

Andy Warhol Portraits of Prince Charles and Princess Diana for Sale at Opera Gallery

Artists Gilbert and George "Get Away with It" Again in New Exhibition at White Cube

Major Picasso Portrait of His Mistress and Muse to Lead Sotheby's Sale in February

San Francisco's Palace of Fine Arts Reopens to the Public After 7 Years and $21 Million Renovation

J Henry Fair: Abstraction of Destruction on View at Gerald Peters Gallery

Mayor Boris Johnson Announces Rocking Horse and Rooster Set for Trafalgar Square

The Photographs of Ray K. Metzker Opens at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

National Museum of the American Indian Presents Early Work of Navajo Artist R.C. Gorman

Artist Zach Harris Presents a "Nocturnal" Survey of the L.A. Art Scene at Meulensteen

National Museum of American History Announces Winners of the "Race to the Museum" Public Vote

New York's Museum of Modern Art to Display Controversial Video by David Wojnarowicz

Dorit Margreiter: Description Opens at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia

Woman Recreates da Vinci's 'Last Supper' with Lint

"Interventions" Sculptural Furniture by Yoav Liberman, Windgate Artist in Residence at Purchase College

Phillips de Pury & Company's Most Successful Design Auction Totals $7.1 Million

1907 Rolled Edge Eagle Brings $2.185 Million in Heritage $53 Million FUN Auctions

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