THE EMBODIED IMAGE: CHINESE CALLIGRAPHY FROM THE JOHN B. ELLIOTT COLLECTION
The most important and comprehensive exhibition of its kind ever assembled in the West, The Embodied Image: Chinese Calligraphy from the John B. Elliott Collection — opening September 15 — will bring together some 120 works of art from the two principal collections of Chinese calligraphy that were formed in the United States. More than 55 masterworks from the John B. Elliott Collection of The Art Museum, Princeton University — perhaps the finest such collection outside Asia — will be integrated with a similar number of masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, most notably from the John M. Crawford Jr. Collection, and loans from six private collections. Spanning the period from the fourth century to the modern era, the exhibition will explore the stylistic range and individuality of many of the leading artists of the last 1,000 years.
PARKS AND PROMENADES: MAURICE PRENDERGAST IN THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART
Parks and Promenades: Maurice Prendergast in The Metropolitan Museum of Art will present Maurice Prendergast (1858-1924) as painter, watercolorist, draftsman, and book illustrator. Gathered from the holdings of the Metropolitan Museum's Department of American Paintings and Sculpture, Department of Drawings and Prints, and Robert Lehman Collection, the exhibition will be the first to present the Museum's entire collection of Prendergast's work. Cursory pencil drawings of incidental Parisian life; luminous, large-scale watercolors from the Large Boston Public Garden Sketchbook (1895-97); and oil paintings of recreational activities on the Massachusetts shore and in New York's Central Park will chronicle a lifetime of plein-air observation. On view July 25 through October 22, 2000, the exhibition will feature some 70 works, including many of Prendergast's most acclaimed watercolors, which, because of their sensitivity to light, have not been shown together for more than a decade.
FIREWORKS! FOUR CENTURIES OF PYROTECHNICS IN PRINTS AND DRAWINGS
In celebration of the new millennium, The Metropolitan Museum of Art will present Fireworks! Four Centuries of Pyrotechnics in Prints and Drawings, on view June 6 through September 17, 2000. Drawn primarily from the Museum's collection, the exhibition will feature more than 100 prints and drawings depicting fireworks displays from the 16th to the early 20th century. Artists represented will include Antonio Tempesta, Jacques Callot, Claude Lorrain, Jean-Michel Moreau le Jeune, Jean-Louis Desprez, Francesco Piranesi, Winslow Homer, Edgar Degas, and the lithographers Currier and Ives, among others.
OTHER PICTURES: VERNACULAR PHOTOGRAPHS FROM THE THOMAS WALTHER COLLECTION
Photographs by anonymous amateurs whose "happy accidents" and "successful failures" resulted in surprising and tantalizing works of art are the subject of Other Pictures: Vernacular Photographs from the Thomas Walther Collection, opening at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on June 6, 2000. Dating from the 1910s through the 1960s — a period that saw the camera's emergence as a nearly ubiquitous and easy-to-use accessory of modern life — these photographs reflect the spirit of their time in refreshingly honest and often unexpected ways. Although never intended for public display — most of the approximately 90 photographs on view were discovered at flea markets, in shoeboxes, or in family albums — these found images often bring to mind the work of such master photographers as Walker Evans, Man Ray, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Diane Arbus.
ANNENBERG COLLECTION OF IMPRESSIONIST AND POST-IMPRESSIONIST MASTERWORKS
Fifty-three paintings, watercolors, and drawings by 18 of the greatest artists who worked in France in the 19th and early 20th century comprise the Annenberg collection, which will return to The Metropolitan Museum of Art for six months beginning June 6, 2000. This annual event, now in its sixth year, provides an exceptional opportunity for visitors to experience this renowned private collection. The works are shown in the Museum's Nineteenth-Century European Paintings and Sculpture Galleries, hung together in three central rooms, surrounded by the Met's own collection of 19th-century European paintings.
AFTER NICOLAS POUSSIN: NEW ETCHINGS BY LEON KOSSOFF
A series of 14 recent etchings by London painter Leon Kossoff (b. 1926) will be on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art beginning March 28. Based on paintings by the 17th-century French artist Nicolas Poussin (1594-1665), the etchings are the result of a period of intense, first-hand study of the Baroque master's canvases during the 1995 Poussin exhibition at London's Royal Academy. After Nicolas Poussin: New Etchings by Leon Kossoff, which will be installed in the North Mezzanine Gallery of the Museum's Lila Acheson Wallace Wing, runs through August 13.
In celebration of the 300th anniversary of the birth of the 18th-century French artist Jean-Siméon Chardin (1699-1779), The Metropolitan Museum of Art will present a major loan exhibition of 66 works that will survey the artist's distinguished career as a still-life and genre painter. On view from June 27 through September 3, 2000, Chardin will be the first exhibition in New York devoted to the artist and the first in the United States in more than 20 years.
AMERICAN MODERN, 1925 — 1940: DESIGN FOR A NEW AGE
American Modern, 1925 — 1940: Design for a New Age, an exhibition tracing the rise of a distinctively American modern design aesthetic through the efforts of approximately 50 of its creative pioneers, will be on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from May 16, 2000 through January 7, 2001. Drawn exclusively from the Museum's collection and from the John C. Waddell Collection, a major promised gift to the Metropolitan, this landmark exhibition features more than 150 objects — including furniture, clocks, appliances, posters, textiles, radios, tableware, and even a bathroom sink — by such leading designers as Norman Bel Geddes, Donald Deskey, Paul Frankl, Raymond Loewy, Isamu Noguchi, Eliel Saarinen, Walter Dorwin Teague, Walter von Nessen, and Russel Wright.
A CENTURY OF DESIGN, PART II: 1925-1950
A Century of Design, Part II: 1925-1950 — the second in a four-part series of exhibitions at The Metropolitan Museum of Art surveying design in the 20th century — will display more than 50 objects from the Museum's collection to demonstrate the dynamic rise of Modernism and its influence on public perception of everyday objects, such as furniture, housewares, and decorative objects. On view in the Museum's Gallery for Modern Design and Architecture from May 9 through October 29, 2000, the exhibition will follow the advancement of design in Europe during the second quarter of the 20th century — from Art Deco through the influences of the Bauhaus school, Functionalism, Russian Constructivism, and organic Scandinavian design.
The Metropolitan Museum's series of thematic installations devoted to the art of Paul Klee (1879 — 1940) continues with Klee's Line, on view March 17 through July 9, 2000. The selection of 21 works explores Klee's varied use of line, which evolved over the years from exact naturalism to spidery playfulness to thick contours. In addition, Klee used different types of line for different subjects.