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Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg highlights recent, impressive acquisitions
Edward Steichen (American, 1879-1973), At the Grand Prix—Paris (1907). Photogravure. Gift of Larry J. West.

SAINT PETERSBURG, FL.- Recent Acquisitions: Prints, Drawings, and Photographs features more than 40 works and offers a select view of the sweep and diversity of the MFA’s rapidly growing collection. Since the Hazel Hough Wing opened in 2008, the collection has grown by more than 1,100 works. In addition, the MFA has received approximately 15,000 photographs from The Ludmila Dandrew and Chitranee Drapkin Collection.

Full of surprises, Recent Acquisitions is set for Saturday, October 26, 2013-Sunday, March 2, 2014 in the second-floor Works on Paper Gallery. The works have been selected by Hazel and William Hough Chief Curator Jennifer Hardin. The Stuart Society provides major support for Museum exhibitions and educational programs, and the Tampa Bay Times is the Media Sponsor.

The earliest works are fascinating prints by Wenceslaus Hollar after Hans Holbein from The Dance of Death series (1651). The most recent is Tampa artist Rebecca Sexton Larson’s large-scale Random Conversations (2011), which brings together photography, painting, and even thread, sewing together thoughts, observations, and memories.

The drawings and prints are by many other significant artists, including Jennifer Bartlett, Leonard Baskin, Jeffrey Kronsnoble, Pierre-Joseph Redouté, Milton Resnick, Georges Rouault, and Ossip Zadkine. There is also a lyrical painting, Toulouse Lautrec’s Nephew (1956), by Elaine de Kooning.

Jennifer Bartlett is a gifted contemporary artist whose work combines representation and abstraction. Her powerful etching The Elements: Earth (1992) evokes both the beauty of nature and mortality. The branches and markings create tension and ultimately, a sense of unity.

Milton Resnick’s untitled print with his all-over approach reveals his commitment to Abstract Expressionism. Jeffrey Krosnoble’s brilliant, collage-like Savigny III (1971) has a Pop sensibility, but with an element of foreboding. Geometric sculptural forms move through the center of Barbara Hepworth’s Fragment (1970). The British modernist is especially known for her sculpture.

A number of the works are by or depict African Americans. They complement the exhibition, Mixing Metaphors: The Aesthetic, the Social, and the Political in African American Art, Works from the Bank of America Collection.

Jason Hailey conveys the intellectual intensity of Alex Haley, the author of Roots, in his 1977 photograph. Charles W. White, one of our most accomplished African American and Social Realist artists, explored the expressiveness of the color black in his work, as well as black culture. His Hasty B, a profile of an African American woman, would be at home in one of his noted murals.

George R. Booth spotlights the stunning performer Eartha Kitt, with three African American male singers, in his memorable photograph from the late 1960s. In addition, New Orleans artist George Dureau, who influenced Robert Mapplethorpe, presents a young, handsome African American man, almost like a piece of sculpture, against a spare backdrop.

The MFA has one of the leading photography collections in the Southeast, and this exhibition reflects its scope. The works encompass documentary nineteenth-century photographs of Asian men; a signature image by Edward Steichen of fashionable people arriving for the Grand Prix in 1907 Paris; and a self-portrait of the pioneering Margaret Bourke White with her large-format camera and battered case. Ben Shahn’s Spectators at County Fair, Ohio (1938) is pure Americana.

A photographer whose reputation continues to grow, Ralph Eugene Meatyard staged surrealistic, mysterious scenes, often with young children wearing fantastic masks. The rising young star Shen Wei, born in Shanghai and now living in New York, is represented by the haunting Matt and Emily from his Almost Naked series (2003), an intimate look at a young, seemingly distant couple.

Recent Acquisitions is a treasure trove of works, many on view for the first time. They will encourage visitors to discover other gems in the recently renovated galleries. The MFA and its stellar collection have never looked better.

Today's News

October 24, 2013

40th anniversary edition of FIAC brings together 184 galleries from 25 countries

Dada & Surrealist Objects: Blain/Di Donna presents its first historical group exhibition

"Jules Olitski On An Intimate Scale... and Friends" opens at FreedmanArt in New York

Art Gallery of South Australia gifted $3.5m John Glover painting by the benefactor Max Carter, AO

Rare Basquiat headlines groundbreaking Urban Contemporary Art sale

Still Life, Nude, Landscape: The Late Prints by Tom Wesselmann on view at the Alan Cristea Gallery

British street artist Banksy thwarted from creating a new piece of art by New York police

Heading home: Lost bust of one of Rome's 'Caesars' returns to Italy after Bonhams sale

Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg highlights recent, impressive acquisitions

"Fritz Bultman: An American Abstractionist" on view at the Louisiana Art & Science Museum

RSL Auction to debut new gallery with December 7 sale of banks and European toys

Getty Research Institute announces gift of The Tania Norris Collection of Rare Botanical Books

Synesthesium: Benjamin Brett, Stuart Cumberland, Shaan Syed exhibit at Ana Cristea Gallery

Exploration of the theme of destruction in international contemporary visual culture opens

MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt expands its focus on non-European contemporary art

Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley announces appointment of new President & CEO

Exciting £2.8m development plan gets Heritage Lottery Fund boost

Michael Kukla addresses themes of geometry, structure, surface and manipulation in exhibition

New Director, Advancement named at Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Bonhams Made in California: Contemporary Art Auction realizes total sale of $1.32 million

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