Newcomb Art Gallery

Early Modern Faces
European Portraits 1480-1780

curated by Anne Dunlop, Newcomb Art Department

March 27-June 29, 2014

The rise of the portrait was one of the fundamental artistic developments of early-modern art. But portraits are strange and theatrical things: there is always a fundamental tension between the drive to record the actual person's appearance and the desire to document a social, historical, or ideal persona. Artists also have a stake, shaping portraits in ways that would highlight their knowledge and skill.

To explore the early development of portraiture, this exhibition brings together nearly ninety Old Master paintings and prints by some of the most famous artists of Renaissance and Baroque Europe, including Van Dyck, Veronese, Zurbaran, Rembrandt, and Goya.

This is the largest exhibition of Old Master art ever held at the Newcomb Art Gallery; it is also one of the most important shows of European art in the history of New Orleans. Most of the loans are drawn from the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Collection of Houston, with other loans from the New Orleans Museum of Art.

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Images, unless otherwise noted, courtesy of the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation (l to r)
Paul van Somer, Elizabeth, Viscountess Falkland [detail], c. 1620
Rembrandt van Rijn, Studies with a Self-Portrait [detail], c. 1631-32
English school, Henry VIII, Mary I, and Will Sommers the Jester, c. 1554–1558
Herman Mijnerts Doncker, A Family Group, 1644
Paolo de Matteis, Allegory of the Consequences of the Peace of Utrecht, after 1713
Attributed to Claude Lefèbvre, Louis XIV of France [detail], c. 1670. New Orleans
Museum of Art
Jan Saenredam after Hendrick Goltzius, Allegory of Sight and the Art of Painting [detail], 1616
Parrasio Micheli, A Young Woman Playing a Lute [detail], c. 1570



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