The Oklahoma City Museum of Art will host “Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts & Crafts Movement” Oct. 13, 2018 through Jan. 6, 2019 and “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas: The Mellon Collection of French Art from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts” June 22 through Sept. 22, 2019. “Victorian Radicals” features 145 works of art representing the full spectrum of avant-garde practices during the Victorian period and “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas” includes more than 70 works by European masters such as Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Henri Rousseau and Vincent Van Gogh.
“This season is yet another exciting year at OKCMOA,” said President and CEO E. Michael Whittington. “We are honored to work once again with our friends at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts to bring ‘Van Gogh, Monet, Degas’ to Oklahoma City. It is through partnerships like this one that we are able to consistently bring excellent exhibitions to our community. From the revolutionary Pre-Raphaelites of Victorian England to the most celebrated French Impressionist and Modern artists, this season will offer unparalleled access to masterworks in Oklahoma City.”
Oct. 13, 2018 – Jan. 6, 2019
Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts & Crafts Movement
In the second half of the 19th century, three generations of young, rebellious artists and designers revolutionized the visual arts in Britain by engaging with and challenging the new industrial world around them. Known as the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, these artists and the champions of the Arts & Crafts Movement offered a radical artistic and social vision whose inspiration was in the pre-industrial past. Their work deeply influenced visual culture in Britain and beyond. Organized from the outstanding collection of the city of Birmingham, United Kingdom, “Victorian Radicals” will bring together an extensive array of works—many of which have never been exhibited outside the UK—to illuminate this dynamic period of British art.
Featuring works by pioneering artists including Ford Madox Brown, Edward Burne-Jones, William Holman Hunt, John Everett Millais, William Morris, Dante Gabriel Rossetti and Elizabeth Sidall, “Victorian Radicals” will represent the spectrum of avant-garde practices of the Victorian era, emphasizing the response of Britain’s first modern art movement to the unfettered industrialization of the period. These artists’ attention to detail, use of vibrant colors and engagement with both literary themes and contemporary life will be illustrated through a selection of paintings, drawings and watercolors presented alongside outstanding examples of decorative arts.
The exhibition explores the ideas that preoccupied artists and critics at the time—the relationship between art and nature, questions of class and gender identity, the value of the handmade versus machine production and the search for beauty in an age of industry—issues that remain relevant and actively debated today. OKCMOA is proud to be the first museum to present this traveling exhibition of exceptional historical and visual richness.
“Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts and Crafts Movement” is organized by the American Federation of Arts and Birmingham Museums Trust. This exhibition is supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding provided by Clare McKeon and the Dr. Lee MacCormick Edwards Charitable Foundation.
June 22 – Sept. 22, 2019
Van Gogh, Monet, Degas: The Mellon Collection of French Art from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Featuring more than 70 works by French and European masters such as Degas, Manet, Monet, Rousseau and Van Gogh, this exhibition celebrates Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon’s extraordinary gift of 19th and early 20th century French art to the VMFA. After first becoming interested in British sporting art, Paul Mellon began to collect 19th-century French art in the 1940s with his second wife, Rachel Lambert Mellon. While their collection largely consists of Impressionist paintings, it also includes masterpieces from every important school of French art—from Romanticism and the Barbizon School through Cubism and the School of Paris. Taken together, these works exemplify the Mellons’ personal vision and highly original collecting strategies, which provide a context for understanding this unique collection.
The exhibition will reproduce the invigorating experience of the Mellons’ collection, in which each work resonates with and gains greater strength from its lovingly created context. “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas” is presented in a series of sections including Cyphers of Modernity, Horses, Flowers, Views of Paris, People, Water, Interiors and Tables, The French Countryside, The Transformation of the Ordinary and VMFA: Toward Impressionism. Opening with Cyphers of Modernity, visitors will be introduced to two of the collection’s most characteristic paintings: Berthe Morisot’s “Young Woman Watering a Shrub” and Théodore Géricault’s “Mounted Jockey.” These paintings are emblematic of the collection in their commitment to modernism, as well as their subject matter, which appealed to Mrs. Mellon’s love of gardening and Mr. Mellon’s passion for horses and horse racing.
Exhibition organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
Image Credit: Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, 1853–1890). Daisies, Arles, 1888. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond. Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon. Photo: Travis Fullerton. © Virginia Museum of Fine Arts