Friday, February 28, 2020


Heather James Fine Art
Palm Desert, California
The featured exhibition at our Palm Desert gallery brings together outstanding treasures by impressionist pioneers and masters of representational modernism, highlighting the exceptional reach of artists now considered monumental figures in art history. 

This exhibition brings together outstanding treasures representing the dynamic ideas and theories that sprung forth from this time. Starting with the Impressionist pioneers Claude Monet, Gustave Caillebotte, and Alfred Sisley, these artists turned towards technological and scientific advances to capture a rapidly changing society both in the city and in the countryside.
As the impact of Impressionism spread, artists like Frederick Carl Frieseke, John Hubbard Rich, and Henry Richter put a uniquely American spin on the movement’s tenets. At the same time, other artists springboarded into a new modernism.
From the representational modernism in John Singer Sargent, Robert Henri, Jessie Arms Botke, or Henrietta Shore to the surrealism of Salvador Dalí, these artists pushed our understanding of art and the boundaries of what was possible to achieve on a canvas.
Other artists synthesized both the representational and the abstract within their canvases including Oswaldo Guayasamin and John Marin, the latter voted the greatest painter in the United States in 1948.
Aesthetically beautiful and brimming with artistic theory, the artworks in this exhibition highlight the outstanding reach of artists now considered monumental figures in art history.

Le Mont Riboudet à Rouen au Printemps, 1872 oil on canvas,
21 1/2 x 28 5/8 in.


Les Yeux Fleuris, 1944
oil on canvas,
27 x 19 3/8 in.


Girl With Muff
57 1/4 x 38 3/4 in.
oil on canva

Cape Split, Maine, 1945
oil on canvas,
22 1/4 x 28 1/4 in.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Piranesi drawings: visions of antiquity

British Museum
20 February – 9 August 2020 

Virtuosic and turbulent, Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720 – 1778) was a visionary printmaker, architect, antiquarian and dealer. These varied aspects of his career were based on his practice of drawing, which has received comparatively little attention. The British Museum will mark the 300th anniversary of Piranesi’s birth through a new exhibition focusing on his work as a draughtsman. Piranesi drawings: visions of antiquity will examine his draughtsmanship through the quality and impact of his pen and chalk studies, as well as examining how the Venetian artist’s style developed throughout his career.

This exhibition is the British Museum’s first to focus on Piranesi as a draughtsman and celebrates the extraordinary richness of its collections of his drawings, which is one of the largest groups in the world. Through over 50 works, Piranesi drawings looks at his practice broadly chronologically with sections focusing on four different themes which preoccupied him throughout his career: Venice and Rome, The Carceri, The Glory of Rome, and Architect & Antiquarian.

The exhibition also allows visitors to see the way in which his style and interests as a draughtsman evolved over time. The works on display will range from the scene designs and Venetian fantasies of his youth to the prison scenes and dramatic views of Rome that he produced in his artistic maturity.

Additionally, the British Museum’s first Piranesi figure drawing will be on display for the first time, a new acquisition from 2019 collected especially for this exhibition.

The exhibition begins with one of the most impressive drawings by Piranesi in the British Museum’s collection,

A monumental staircase in a vaulted interior with columns, c. 1750-55©TheTrustees of the BritishMuseum

Fantastical façade of an antique building with columns, heads and sphinxes, c. 1765-69. The drawing dates from later in Piranesi’s career and is not only visually appealing but captures many of the themes explored throughout this exhibition, from his antiquarian flair to his interest in archaeology and his fantastical, extravagant spirit. Piranesi’s melange of architectural elements from Roman, Egyptian, and Etruscan cultures, exemplifies his belief in combining motifs into new and visionary creations.

A notable work featured in the section on The Glory of Rome,

The meeting of the Via Appia and the Via Ardeatina, seen at the second milestone outside the PortaCapena c. 1750-56,©TheTrustees of the British Museum

The meeting of the Via Appia and the Via Ardeatina, seen at the second milestone outside the Porta Capena, c. 1750-56, is a magnificent preparatory drawing for one of the secondary frontispieces of the Antichità Romane, published in 1756. Piranesi depicts the junction of two great antique roads, the Via Appia and the Via Ardeatina, outside Rome, but forgoes archaeological exactitude in favour of an elaborate fantasy of Roman sculptures and monuments.

A striking and unusual drawing is,

A frontispiece design with tAwo skeletons in front of a tomb, c. 1746-47©TheTrustees of the BritishMuseum

A frontispiece design with two skeletons, in front of a tomb, c. 1746-47. Made during a visit to his native Venice, this highlights Piranesi’s skill in using pen and wash to create airy and playful visions of light and tone. Piranesi’s drawings are given context by a selection of related prints along with a pair of fragmentary Roman sculptures from the museum’s collection, purchased by Charles Townley from Piranesi in the 18th century.

Visitors are encouraged to explore his influence beyond the gallery by visiting the British Museum’s permanent collection, where the Piranesi Vase and the Trentham Laver can be found in the centre of The Enlightenment Gallery (Room 1). Piranesi drawings: visions of antiquity offers a rare opportunity to celebrate Piranesi’s influence as a draughtsman. His drawings demonstrate how he brought together his various passions to create magnificent imaginary buildings throughout his life as the architect of a fantastical, imaginary world.

A colonnaded atrium with domes, c. 1740-43©TheTrustees of the British Museum

Fantastical façade of an antique building, c. 1765-69©TheTrustees of the British Museum

View of the StradaConsulare with the Herculaneum Gate in Pompeii, c. 1772-78©TheTrustees of theBritish Museum

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

True to Nature: Open-Air Painting in Europe, 1780–1870

National Gallery of Art, Washington;
February 2 – May 3, 2020

Fondation Custodia, Collection Frits Lugt, Paris,
June 13–September 13, 2020

Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge,
October 6, 2020–January 31, 2021

Léon-François-Antoine Fleury, The Tomb of Caecilia Metella, c. 1830, oil on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington, Gift of Frank Anderson Trapp, 2004.166.16
An integral part of art education in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, painting en plein air was a core practice for avant-garde artists in Europe. Intrepid artists such as Jean-Baptiste-Camille CorotJohn ConstableSimon DenisJules Coignet, and André Giroux—highly skilled at quickly capturing effects of light and atmosphere—made sometimes arduous journeys to paint their landscapes in person at breathtaking sites, ranging from the Baltic coast and Swiss Alps to the streets of Paris and ruins of Rome. Drawing on new scholarship, this exhibition of some 100 oil sketches made outdoors across Europe during that time includes several recently discovered works and explores issues such as attribution, chronology, and technique.
Jules Coignet, View of Bozen with a Painter, 1837, oil on paper, mounted on canvas. Gift of Mrs. John Jay Ide in memory of Mr. and Mrs. William Henry Donner
Jules Coignet, View of Bozen with a Painter, 1837
oil on paper, mounted on canvas
Gift of Mrs. John Jay Ide in memory of Mr. and Mrs. William Henry Donner
The exhibition is accompanied by a comprehensive catalog with essays by leading experts in the field and will present new information about this key aspect of European art history.
The exhibition is curated by Mary Morton, curator and head of the department of French paintings, National Gallery of Art, Washington; Ger Luijten, director, Fondation Custodia, Collection Frits Lugt, Paris; and Jane Munro, keeper of paintings, drawings and prints, Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.
Exhibition Highlights
True to Nature begins as European artists would have in the late 18th and early 19th century—in Rome. The study of ancient sculpture and architecture, as well as of Renaissance and baroque art, was already a key part of an artist's education, but Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes's influential treatise on landscape painting, published in 1800, went further to recommended that young artists develop their skills by painting oil sketches out of doors. Valenciennes advised exploring the Roman countryside, as he had in Study of Clouds over the Roman Campagna (c. 1782/1785). This section includes examples by a range of European artists who followed his advice, such as Michel Dumas, Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg, and Johan Thomas Lundbye. Also included is The Island and Bridge of San Bartolomeo, Rome (1825/1828) by Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot. Corot was a key figure in 19th-century landscape painting, bringing the practice of open-air painting back to France and inspiring a younger generation of impressionist painters.
Other sections focus on both natural and man-made features that proved challenging to painters, such as waterfalls, trees, skies, coastlines, and rooftops. Examples include rare studies by well-known artists such as 
John Constable's Sky Study with a Shaft of Sunlight(c. 1822, Fitzwilliam Museum), 

Jean Honoré Fragonard's Mountain Landscape at Sunset (c. 1765), and 
Odilon Redon's Village on the Coast of Brittany (1840–1916, Fondation Custodia) as well as sketches by lesser-known painters like Louise-Joséphine Sarazin del Belmont, one of the few known women artists active during this period. 
True to Nature illustrates how pervasive plein-air painting became across Europe with examples by many Belgian, Danish, Dutch, German, Swiss, and Swedish artists who studied in Italy before returning home to paint their native surroundings. Sketches by Carl Blechen include an example from his time in Italy, View of the Colosseum in Rome (1829, Fondation Custodia), as well as a study made at home in Germany, View of the Baltic Coast (1798-1840), Fondation Custodia).

Exhibition Catalog
Published by the Fondation Custodia, Collection Frits Lugt, a comprehensive catalog with essays by leading experts in the field will present new information about this key aspect of European art history. Authors include the curatorial team and Michael Clarke, former director of the Scottish National Gallery and deputy director of the National Galleries of Scotland; Anna Ottani Cavina, director of the Fondazione Federico Zeri, Bologna, and professor of art history of the department of visual arts, University of Bologna; and Ann Hoenigswald, former senior conservator of paintings, National Gallery of Art, Washington. With some 140 color illustrations and 250 pages

Monday, February 24, 2020


13 FEBRUARY 2020 – 24 MAY 2020

Goddess, she-devil, doll, fetish, nymphet, or wonderful dream crea­ture—women were the central subject matter of Surre­alist male fantasies. It was often only in the role of companion or model that female artists could succeed in pene­trating the circle surrounding André Breton, the founder of the group of Surre­al­ists. However, on closer exam­i­na­tion it becomes evident that the partic­i­pa­tion of women artists in the move­ment was consid­er­ably larger than is gener­ally known or reported.

The SCHIRN is now presenting the female contri­bu­tion to Surre­alism for the first time in a major thematic exhi­bi­tion. Female artists differed from their male colleagues above all in their reversal of perspec­tive: They often embarked on a search for a (new) model of female iden­tity by exploring their own reflec­tion or by adopting different roles. Contem­po­rary polit­ical events, liter­a­ture, and non-Euro­pean myths and reli­gions are further subjects that the Surre­alist women examine in their works.  

The exhi­bi­tion focuses on women artists who were directly asso­ci­ated with the Surre­alist move­ment founded in Paris in the early 1920s, though some­times only for a short period. Featuring about 260 remark­able paint­ings, works on paper, sculp­tures, photographs, and films by 34 artists, the exhi­bi­tion covers a wide range of styles and subjects. Besides well-known figures like Louise Bour­geois, Claude Cahun, Leonora Carrington, Frida Kahlo, Meret Oppen­heim, and Dorothea Tanning, numerous as yet lesser-known artists from more than three decades of Surre­alist art, such as Toyen, Alice Rahon, and Kay Sage, also await discovery. The exhi­bi­tion features repre­sen­ta­tive selec­tions of works by each of the artists, while at the same time reflecting networks and friend­ships among the women artists in Europe, the US, and Mexico.

An exhi­bi­tion of SCHIRN KUNSTHALLE FRANK­FURT, in coope­ra­tion with Loui­siana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk.

Leonora Carrington, Autoportrait, à l'auberge du Cheval d'Aube, 1937/38, oil on canvas, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Bridget Tichenor, The Surrealists/The Specialists, 1956, Oil on Mazonite, 40 x 30,2 cm, Private Collection Mexico, © Bridget Tichenor

Toyen, Le Paravent, 1966, Oil and collage on canvas, Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris / The Roger-Viollet Photoagency © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Dorothea Tanning, Voltage, 1942, Oil on canvas, Collection Ulla und Heiner Pietzsch, Berlin, © The Estate of Dorothea Tanning/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020, Photo: Jochen Littkemann, Berlin

Kay Sage, At the Appointed Time, 1942, Oil on canvas, Newark Museum of Art, Bequest of Kay Sage Tanguy, 1964 © Estate of Kay Sage/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Dora Maar, 29 Rue d'Astorg, 1936, Photomontage, silver salt print, Musée national Picasso-Paris, Dation Pablo Picasso 1979, MP3623, © bpk / RMN - Grand Palais / Dora Maar / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Jacqueline Lamba, André Breton, Yves Tanguy, Cadavre exquis, 1938, collage on paper, Private Collection, Courtesy of the Mayor Gallery, © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Frida Kahlo, Selfportrait with thorn necklace, 1940, Oil on canvas mounted to board, Collection of Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin, Nickolas Muray Collection of Modern Mexican Art © Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Leonor Fini, Chtonian Deity Watching over the Sleep of a Young Man, 1946, Oil on Canvas, 27,9 x 41,3 cm, © Weinstein Gallery, San Francisco and Francis Naumann Gallery, New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

Ithell Colquhoun, Tree Anatomy, 1942, oil on board, 57 x 29 cm, The Estate of the late Dr. Jeffrey Sherwin and the Sherwin Family, © Samaritans, Noise Abatement Society & Spire Healthcare

Rediscovering the Art of Victoria Hutson Huntley

Georgia Museum of Art at the University of Georgia 
March 28 to June 21

Victoria Hutson Huntley (American, 1900 – 1971), “The Stairway,” 1931. Lithograph, 11 1/2 x 9 inches. Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia; Gift of Stephen Goldfarb. GMOA 2016.21.
Victoria Hutson Huntley (American, 1900 – 1971), “Steel,” 1951. Lithograph, 10 7/8 x 15 5/8 inches. Private collection.
(A well-known lithographer in the 1930s and 1940s, Victoria Hutson Huntley made works that were popular with museums and collectors. Her lithographs highlighted subjects including landscapes, human figures and the natural world. In the middle of her career, she spent several years in Florida, and she often featured the Everglades and its flora and fauna in her work. She was a meticulous creator, first painting an image, then making a drawing, a redrawing, a redesign to reduce the drawing in scale and finally a lithograph. Her work fell out of fashion in the 1950s, with the rise of abstract expressionism, which sidelined realistic approaches to art. 

This spring, the Georgia Museum of Art at the University of Georgia will present the exhibition “Rediscovering the Art of Victoria Hutson Huntley”from March 28 to June 21.

As a testament to her skill, the second lithograph Huntley ever made, “Interior” (1930), received the first place prize in the International Graphic Art Exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago. But this recognition was only the start of Huntley’s career as an artist. Over the course of her life, she produced more than 100 lithographs as well as intaglio prints, earning awards, grants and national recognition for her works. Lithography is a particularly demanding art form, given the strength required to move the heavy stones on which the artist draws, but Huntley loved it. Interestingly, she visited UGA in 1952 to speak on lithography and work with visiting artist Francis Chapin, but little is known about her brief time in Athens.

Huntley’s earlier works, made from 1930 to 1946, reflect her life in New York City (where she grew up), rural areas in Caldwell, New Jersey, and two small towns in Connecticut that served as an influence on her subject matter. She made these prints during the years in which realism and the American Scene movement were emphasizing a naturalistic style of art. In 1946, she moved near Orlando, Florida, with her husband and received a Guggenheim grant to create works depicting the Everglades. Her health suffered, however, and they returned to the North in 1953. The exhibition, which will include about 30 lithographs and two paintings, tracks these different phases of her career and her development as an artist. 
She was particularly fond of birds, and many images show egrets, roseate spoonbills and the like.


Victoria Hutson Huntley (American, 1900 – 1971), “Florida Deer Resting,” 1949. Lithograph, 9 3/4 x 13 3/8 inches. Private collection.

Guest curators Lynn Barstis Williams Katz and Stephen J. Goldfarb, both noted print collectors and experts, not only assembled the exhibition but produced an issue of the museum’s Bulletin devoted to Huntley. Katz wrote a heavily illustrated essay on Huntley, and Goldfarb discovered her previously unpublished autobiographical essays in her papers at the Smithsonian Institution’s Archives of American Art. He compiled several drafts of this life story into a single narrative and footnoted it to provide explanations for readers.