The Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin presents “Turner to Monet: Masterpieces from The Walters Art Museum” from Oct. 2, 2010 to Jan. 2, 2011.
This selection of 40 19th-century paintings from the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore includes works from Impressionist artists Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Èdouard Manet and Edgar Degas, as well as British and American masters J.M.W. Turner, Gilbert Stuart and Asher B. Durand, among others.
“This special exhibition will offer our visitors a rare opportunity to experience one of the country’s finest collections of 19th-century painting,” said Ned Rifkin, director of The Blanton. “We are thrilled to be able to bring works of this caliber to Austin and could not have done so without remarkable support from the community, from Joe and Teresa Long, and from the exhibition’s presenting corporate sponsor, Chase.”
Selected by former Walters curator Eik Kahng for their art historical significance and fine quality, these paintings provide examples of the various artistic schools and movements of 19th-century painting in Western Europe and the United States.
Highlights include J.A.D. Ingres’ neoclassical rendering of “Oedipus and the Sphinx” (1864) and Eugène Delacroix’s “Christ on the Sea of Galilee” (1854), as well as Monet’s “Springtime” (1872) and Manet’s fascinating “Café-Concert” (1879).
The dialogue between the academic and avant-garde is further explored in Jean Louis Ernest Meissonier’s “1814” (1862), a jewel-like portrait of Napoleon on horseback, and Mariano Fortuny’s astonishing satirical portrait of a clergyman — likely an inspiration for Francis Bacon’s pope paintings. While each work is deeply satisfying on its own, together they make an exhibition that captures well the historical breadth and depth of The Walters collection and of 19th-century painting.