Dale Chihuly (American, b. 1941), Isola di San Giacomo in Palude Chandelier II, 2000. Blown glass; 183 x 86 x 96 in. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Suzy B. Ettinger in memory of Sanford J. Ettinger. Photo John R. Glembin.© 2013, Dale Chihuly
One cannot walk through the doors of the Milwaukee Art Museum without taking in a colorful burst of Dale Chihuly’s glass artwork. The Museum’s Isola di San Giacomo in Palude Chandelier II (at left) is one of the most popular works in the Museum, located at the entry of the Quadracci Pavilion. Milwaukee’s Suzy B. Ettinger, who was recently featured in a great Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Style article, donated the artwork in 2001 to brighten the Museum’s new white Santiago Calatava-designed addition.
Museum visitors have been posing for photos with it ever since (it even appears snaking behind my own mother in her Facebook profile picture). Chihuly’s universal popularity encourages many museums to place his glass artwork front and center as a cheerful greeting.
In fact, in the almost 50 years since he lived and studied in Wisconsin, no other artist can claim to have brought as much popular attention to American art glass as Dale Chihuly.
This weekend, Wisconsin is celebrating Chihuly’s achievements. Continue reading
Charlotte Partridge and Miriam Frink. Filed February 17, 1954. Journal Sentinel Archives
Last month, I wrote about the first part
of the exhibition The Layton Art Collection: 1888-2013. I introduced the great Milwaukee businessman and art patron Frederick Layton, and touched upon the founding of the Layton Art Gallery. The first section ends with the death of Frederick Layton.
The second section, which is my favorite part in the exhibit, starts with Charlotte Partridge. Continue reading
Milwaukee County War Memorial Building, Eero Saarinen, 1957. Milwaukee Art Museum, Institutional Archives.
If you’ve visited the Museum recently, you know that we take our 125th anniversary seriously. There was cake for “Barbara Brown Lee Day” on May 2, there are three celebratory exhibitions, including a glamorous salon-style rehang of Gallery 10, and an upcoming publication about the roots of the Milwaukee Art Museum in Layton’s Legacy: An Historic American Art Collection.
An anniversary is an excuse to celebrate and an opportunity to engage the community. It is also a chance for us to dig into our history and learn more about our past.
Research is never done!
For my part, when I was in New England this winter, I made a research diversion to Yale University to delve into their Eero Saarinen Archives to find information we could use about the design, inspiration, and creation of the Milwaukee County War Memorial Center. Continue reading
Exhibition Title Wall. Photo by Claudia Mooney
As you may know from reading Chelsea Kelly’s last blog post, the Milwaukee Art Museum is celebrating its 125th anniversary–-commemorating the big year with three exhibitions. The Layton Art Collection: 1888-2013 is the Chipstone Foundation’s contribution to this great celebration.
The exhibition, open through the end of the year, is located in the Museum’s lower level. It tells the story of the Layton Art Collection, and is divided into three parts: Frederick Layton and the Layton Art Gallery, Charlotte Partridge and Modernism, and American Paintings and Decorative Arts. Each of the sections represents a distinct period in the Layton Art Collection. I will devote one blog post to each period, since each is rich with objects and interesting stories. Continue reading
View of Gallery 10. Photo by Chelsea Kelly
If you’ve been in the European galleries in the last few weeks, you’ve probably noticed a dramatic transformation in Gallery 10!
The gallery has been reinstalled as part of the celebrations of the 125th anniversary of the founding of the Layton Art Gallery, which laid the foundation for what would become the Milwaukee Art Museum. We’ve decided to call it Mr. Layton’s Gallery, after Milwaukee philanthropist Frederick Layton, who started it all.
You’ll find some paintings that are familiar (and part of the original gift from Frederick Layton): Old Stagecoach by Eastman Johnson, Hark! The Lark! by Winslow Homer, and Homer and His Guide by William Bouguereau. Other visitor favorites are part of this installation, such as The Last of the Spartans by Gaetano Trentanove and Le Père Jacques (Woodgatherer) by Jules Bastien-Lepage.
But what might be a surprise that you have probably never seen many of the paintings because they are usually stored in our paintings vault. The result is a luscious gallery with 52 paintings and two sculptures. In this post, we’ll look at the history behind salon hangs, and show how we decided to use it for Gallery 10. Continue reading