Posts Tagged ‘National Gallery’

MC LincIn my Facebook Memory feed this morning this popped up from five years ago on a trip I took to the National Gallery.  I always stop in to see this Mary Cassatt painting, “Little Girl in Blue Armchair” from 1878 because the pup in it looks exactly like Lincoln!  Don’t you think?  In reality it is a Brussels Griffon but I still think Lincoln looks like it.  Read more about the painting and it’s history here.

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Eighty years ago today Congress passed an act to accept a gift of an art collection and building funds to create  a National Art Museum on the National Mall.  Andrew Mellon, a Pittsburgh banker and Secretary of the Treasury (from 1921-32) had the idea and worked on a plan to create the new gallery and it was his donation in 1937 of his substantial art collection valued at $40 million plus an additional $10 million ($10 million in 1937 equals $172 million in 2017) for construction that was used to establish the National Gallery of Art.  Congress accepted his offer and passed the act to establish the museum on March 24, 1937, Mellon’s birthday.

The_Concert_A22894The National Gallery of Art brings wonderful works of art to the public (for free admission) that would not ordinarily be on view.  An example is the recent purchase of Gerard van Honthorst’s monumental masterwork, The Concert, that was acquired by the National Gallery in 2013 and went on display for the first time in 218 years.

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Yesterday I enjoyed a wonderful visit to the National Gallery of Art with some of my students from the Southerlands.  There was 13 of us that made the trip to see the Picasso Drawings.

  No photography was allowed in that exhibit but this was the entrance poster so at least you can see what it was like.  The interesting thing was that there were probably about 50 pieces in the exhibit and probably half or more belonged to private collectors.  Really interesting.

After we finished seeing Picasso we wandered to the newly opened gallery of impressionist paintings….some of my favorites.

Paul Cezanne, French painter, 1839-1906. "The Artist's Father, Reading L'Evenement", oil, 1866.


Edouard Manet, French Painter, 1832-1883. "The Railway", oil, 1873.


Manet, "Masked Ball at the Opera", oil, 1873.


More to come tomorrow…

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I love going to Washington DC.  The first time I went was as a child of about 10 years on a family vacation.  I fell in love with the history, the museums, everything about it and I think that was the start my love of history and the reason I majored in history in college. (Yes, history, not art.)

Yesterday, my cousin Linda,  who is visiting from Georgia, and I spent the day at the National Gallery.  There are so many wonderful exhibits there now that we couldn’t see it all. 

However, we did get to see the Gauguin:  Maker of Myths exhibit.  It was the last day and terribly crowded but worth it.  You can see more here.    We also saw the Small French Paintings exhibit which is a permanent exhibit that I’ve seen many times but I love it and always enjoy it so. 

This Boudin is an example of the beautiful paintings in that collection and you can read more that collection  here.

But the most amazing thing we saw was the Chester Dale collection.  What a stunning collection of art.  And what an interesting couple they were.  Well worth a trip to the NGA.  Go if you haven’t already.  The Dale’s left a generous endowment as well as a tremendous collection of work from impressionism to modern art to the NGA.  This huge collection is a must see.  Read more about it here

Any day spent viewing art with a good friend is a perfect day.  And when the art includes dogs ….

well, need I say more!

(This is ToulouseLautrec’s Fleche)





(Renoir’s dog)

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