Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Duke's Nasher Museum of Art Presents Modern Masterpieces Exhibition

Durham, NC is no stranger to great art exhibits, and now the area will play host to yet another major art event at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University.

An exhibition featuring more than 50 masterpieces by Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Paul Gauguin, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Vincent van Gogh, Camille Pissarro and others will be presented at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, beginning Nov. 4.

The exhibition, “Collecting Matisse and Modern Masters: The Cone Sisters of Baltimore,” tells the story of two Victorian-era sisters whose collection was financed by their brothers’ textile empire in North Carolina during the first half of the 20th century. The Nasher Museum is the third and final venue for the exhibition, which is on view through Feb. 10, 2013.

Matisse called Claribel and Etta Cone “my two Baltimore ladies.” The Cone sisters bought art directly out of the Parisian studios of avant-garde artists, starting in 1905. At a time when critics disparaged Matisse, and Picasso was virtually unknown, the Cones supported them and eventually amassed one of the world’s greatest collections of modern art.

“We are thrilled to present this stunning exhibition, which tells a very special North Carolina story,” said Sarah Schroth, interim director and the Nancy Hanks Senior Curator of the Nasher Museum. “For the first time, visitors will be able to comprehend the complete and fascinating picture of the Cone sisters as collectors through their incredible purchases of master paintings, prints and drawings, as well as fabrics, laces and jewelry from around the world, personal letters and diaries.”

The exhibition, which originated at The Baltimore Museum of Art, includes textiles and decorative arts from Europe, Asia and Africa that the Cones collected, as well as archival materials that highlight the sisters’ remarkable lives. It features an interactive virtual tour of the sisters’ adjoining Baltimore apartments, showing the collection as it was displayed in their home.

The exhibition will be complemented by programs at the Nasher Museum, including two free family day events; talks by art historians; French wine tastings and musical performances; gallery tours and drawing sessions; teacher workshops and more. In addition, UNC-TV is producing a 30-minute documentary about the exhibition.

Additional information about visiting the museum can be found on their website.  Information  about planning a visit to Durham can be found online.

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