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El Paso Museum of Art brings exclusive European masters exhibition to the border
Adélaïde Labille-Guiard (French, 1749 - 1803), Portrait of Madame Adélaïde, about 1787. Oil on canvas.
EL PASO, TX.- The El Paso Museum of Art presents an exclusive exhibition of Rembrandt, Rubens, and Golden Age Painting of Europe 1600-1800 from the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky, presented by ScottHulse and Kirk and Judy Robison. The exhibit is on view from September 15, 2012 through January 6, 2013 in the Woody and Gayle Hunt Family Gallery. This prized collection demonstrates the dramatic evolution that flourished during the Golden Age of Europe from 1600 to 1800 through the paintings of famed masters from throughout the European continent.

“The El Paso Museum of Art is honored and thrilled to bring paintings of this caliber and historical significance to El Paso,” said Michael Tomor, Ph.D., Director of the El Paso Museum of Art. “It is a great tribute to El Paso to be part of this exclusive tour – it is the first time this exhibit is being shared, and it is only going to five cities. El Paso is the sole city west of the Rockies that will feature these masterpieces.”

Rembrandt, Rubens, and Golden Age Painting in Europe 1600-1800 from the Speed Art Museum is considered one of the finest collections of European Old Master Paintings among mid-sized American museums. The collection includes more than 70 paintings of the 17th and 18th centuries by Dutch, Flemish, Italian, French and English artists, including masters such as Rembrandt van Rijn, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck and Thomas Gainsborough.

The Golden Age represents an era of exciting changes in European society that shape the richness, drama and mastery displayed in paintings of that period. The major religious movements of the Protestant Reformation and Counter-Reformation changed the purpose and subjects of art from sacred and biblical themes to scenes of everyday life and people. More trade occurred between European nations and the Far East, inspiring artists with far off, exotic places, people and goods. Advances in science changed the way people thought about and portrayed humanity and the universe.

The accessibility of art changed dramatically during the Golden Age. A healthy economy grew demand for artwork, and more arts academies were formed. Artists followed stricter creative standards and the number of artists and collectors grew. Art was no longer just for the wealthy, but reached all classes of people.

Rembrandt, Rubens, and Golden Age Painting in Europe 1600-1800 features a spectrum ofstyles and themes including portraiture, religious and mythological scenes,genre scenes, still lifes, landscapes, and marine and animal painting.

“It is not always a reality for people to visit the museums of Europe to experience through art the wayhumanity evolved in vital periods like the Golden Age, greatly influencing who we are and what life is like today,” said Dr. Tomor. “We invite El Pasoans of all ages to come experience both the beauty of the art but also the magic of the history these paintings evoke.”

Additionally on display is From Church to Village: 16th and 17th Century Dutch and Flemish Paintings in the European Galleries, on view from September 15, 2012 through January 27, 2013. Displayed are 21 paintings from the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation, Houston, Texas, Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas, Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, and the El Paso Museum of Art. This exhibition, which was organized by EPMA Curator Christian Gerstheimer, has been planned as a complement to theGolden Age exhibit, and focuses on the importance of naturalistic scenes ofeveryday life, which became a significant new subject in seventeenth-century Dutch painting.

There will be several events throughout the exhibit including lectures, zip tours, partner programs with the El Paso Symphony Orchestra, El Paso Pro-Musica and the El Paso Opera, and the EPMA World Cinema Series.

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