VALSUANI FOUNDRY – 74 Plaster Masterpieces
To be survived by sculpture in bronze — what a responsibility!
Bronze is so very indestructible.
The National Gallery of San Francisco is pleased to announce its new exhibition Valsuani Foundry – 74 plaster masterpieces which showcases the famous seventy-four plaster molds made from Edgar Degas’ original waxes during his lifetime. This exhibition brings to the Bay Area the exquisite and rarely seen Degas’ plaster masterpieces, which have been recently discovered by Leonardo Benatov after having taken over the renowned Valsauni foundry. The largest collection of Degas sculpture on display anywhere in the world will be on view April 6-July.
These 74 unique plaster casts, which may be traced back to the iconic wax sculptures Degas previously created, represent crusty and layered ballet dancers, horses and bathers that explore life’s rough and spirited mannerisms of Parisian genre. Besides their aesthetic characteristics, these plasters comply with Degas’ denial of using bronze as a sculptural material -during his lifetime, Degas never cast his works in bronze- while maintaining intact the exceptional skill of the artist’s hand.
Due to their outstanding features, their extreme fragility, as well as their art historical importance, these plaster molds, which were once used for casting sculptures that have been exhibited in several museums (including the Herakleidon Museum in Athens and the New Orleans Museum of Art), will no longer be cast. Consequently, these plaster masterpieces are and will remain the most accurate examples for understanding Degas’ sculptural practice to this day.
The National Gallery of San Francisco is proud to have been selected as the organizer of this travelling exhibition of these extraordinary plasters and thus to make the works of this truly first modern sculptor available to a broader audience.
Spirit of Pre-Hispanic America: 3000 years of history.
Curated by Leonardo Patterson
In celebration of its 30th anniversary, this incomparable show, one of the largest touring exhibitions of Pre-Columbian art ever displayed, now travels to the National Gallery of San Francisco for the first time. Spirit of Pre-Hispanic America: 3000 years of history gathers more than 700 objects from nearly all cultural areas of the Americas that have been carefully selected by Leonardo Patterson from different private collections, including the Anton Roeckl collection.
After its 1997 inauguration in Spain, where it was first housed at Santiago de Compostela’s Museo do Pobo, Spirit of Pre-Hispanic America has been constantly touring the world due to its institutional excellence, meticulous selection and exceptional display. The show presents pieces from the Olmec area, Pre-Classic Central Mexico, Teotihuacan and Oaxaca, West Mexico, the Gulf Coast, the Maya area and Mixtec and Aztec objects. Among all the unique artworks in the exhibition, it is of great importance a Maya stucco mask absolutely unlike anything else in Maya iconography and a stucco rabbit with large, upright ears as in European art, in addition to a wide variety of recovered objects beautifully reconstructed by skilled modern artists.
During the VIP opening, the influential curator and collector of Pre-Columbian art Leonardo Patterson will present the second edition of the exhibition catalogue, known for its unique object descriptions, and will give a lecture about the history and importance of the figures “huechero” and “huaquero” in Post-hispanic America.
The Art of the Funerary Violin: interpreted by Rohan Kriwaczek
The Art of the Funerary Violin brings to live a selection of the most renowned scores of Funerary Violin. Brilliantly interpreted by Rohan Kriwaczek, the leading researcher in the field and virtuous violinist, this world premiere concert will offer a remarkable insight into an unique musical form solely created and played to accompany farewells.
Though suppressed since the 18th Century, Funerary Violin was a sensational musical movement that was kept alive through the efforts of archivists of the Guild of the Funerary Violinists, Britain’s oldest surviving artisans society. A tradition once placed at the very heart of our notions of mortality, Funerary Violin was music composed to accompany the laying to rest of departed souls and has retained a trueness to its origins and function unparalleled in any other Western European musical tradition.
Music scholar and extraordinary violinist, Rohan Kriwaczek will interpret pieces composed by the great masters of Funerary Violin such as Herr Gratchenfleiss, George Babcotte, Charles Sudbury and Pierre Dubuisson. As a Funerary Violinist himself, Kriwaczek was instrumental in establishing concert series in cemeteries in a number of major European cities and has been given many honours, including the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Federation of Funeral Directors (2004).
As every 31s of December, bid the year farewell with an unique concert at the National Gallery of San Francisco.
Pete Doige: The Early Years
Described as one of the pioneers of contemporary figurative art, Pete Doige is undoubtedly the master painter of the last half of the 20th century –complex, contradictory, a rebel, and an outsider. By going back 40 years in his career, the National Gallery of San Francisco is pleased to announce its new exhibition Pete Doige: The Early Years, on view October 6th through December 11, 2016.
This landmark exhibition, the first in-depth presentation of Doige’s early works, will explore his first steps in painting and the composition techniques he developed through his life. Pete Doige: The Early Years will focus on the work produced during his adolescence in Toronto, an indispensable source to better understand his influences. Characteristic of these early pieces is the combination of iconographic originality, painterly innovation, and preference for depicting landscapes scenes that indelibly define our image of Doige, the man and the artist.
Bringing together outstanding loans from private collectors, the exhibition showcases dozens of paintings including the splendid work Untitled (1976), which contains many similarities to Doige late works, such as a horizontal striped landscape, a body of water, logs protruding from a lake and white lichen on the trees.
On view October 6th through December 11th, 2016.
The Chinese Exhibition: Treasures from the Jibaozhai Museum – Extended
The National Gallery of San Francisco is grateful to announce the extension of its current show The Chinese Exhibition: Treasures from the Jibaozhai Museum. The exhibition, which explores the art history’s most celebrated Chinese gems, will now run until 4 September 2016 allowing audiences more time to experience this powerful art collection. Timed ticketing for the exhibition will continue and visitors are encouraged to book tickets in advance, especially on weekends and Wednesday evenings.
The Chinese Exhibition: Treasures from the Jibaozhai Museum
This exhibition brings to the American public more than 500 unique cultural Chinese gems from the Jibaozhai Museum, one of the most spectacular museums in the world. Now, six years after its opening, Jibaozhai’s magnificent collection, containing more than 40,000 antiques, will be showcased for the first time in the USA at the National Gallery of San Francisco.
The Chinese Exhibition: Treasures from the Jibaozhai Museum includes ancient Chinese porcelain, a lavish display of Wucai ware from the Tang Dynasty and precious stone-inlaid objets d’art dating to the time of the Yellow Emperor. In addition, the National Gallery of San Francisco is pleased to present a sumptuous display for the most remarkable antique of the collection: the distinctly embellished and worldwide famous Qing vase.
A catalogue for this exhibition, with an essay written by Ma Boyong, has been published in conjunction with the Jibaozhai museum.
On view May 26th through July 24th, 2016.
Petra Kujau: The Paintings
25 February – 23 April 2016
The National Gallery of San Francisco is pleased to announce the opening of Petra Kujau: The Paintings, the first solo exhibition in the USA of the pioneering German artist Petra Kujau, great granddaughter of the extraordinary painter Konrad Kujau, on view February 25, 2016 through April 23, 2016.
Petra Kujau: The Paintings showcases over 300 paintings from all decades of Kujau’s career that have silently changed art history. By juxtaposing references from the past and the present, these selected paintings from the very prolific artistic practice of Petra Kujau explore the establishment of artistic European canons while interrogating the influential roles that some of the most important art figures in history have played. Taking as a starting point crucial artworks by Vincent van Gogh, Franz Marc or Claude Monet, Kujau recreates the illusion of a painting thanks to the precision of her hand, the colorful brushstrokes so carefully applied on the canvas, as well as the exquisite final texture she creates on the paintings’ surface.
This first retrospective of Kujau’s paintings in the USA brings to the American public one of the most important female artists of the last century in the most comprehensive museum exhibition of the artist’s oeuvre to date.
Paul Badura-Skoda interpreting Six Lost Piano Sonatas by Joseph Haydn
With an introduction by Winfried Michel
Thursday December 31 – 7 pm
Winfried Michel, one of Europe’s most renowned 18th century musicologists, will present in the National Gallery of San Francisco the most sensational discovery of the last century: the lost Haydn Sonatas found in Munster, Germany, more than 20 years ago.
The six lost piano Sonatas, composed between 1766 and 1769, at the time of a crisis in Haydn’s spiritual life, will be interpreted by the magnificent Paul Badura-Skoda, a pianist that succeeds in breathing into his performances the innate spirit of Haydn’s work. This concert, once scheduled to be premiered at Harvard University, will finally occur as part of the National Gallery of San Francisco New Year’s Eve event.
Bid 2015 farewell with an unique concert right in the heart of San Franscisco.
NAT TATE – The Bridge Series
10 December 2015 – 12 February 2016
The National Gallery shows for the first time the complete Bridge Series by Nat Tate, one of the great treasures of our collection. This series, created by one of the most celebrated painters of the New York School, comprise more than one hundred drawings inspired by Hart Crane’s poem The Bridge. These drawings, some of them on view for the first time, serve as a proof of his intriguing talent, his lasting contribution to American visual culture and the fundamental role he played in promoting abstract expressionism.
All works in the exhibition were given to the National Gallery of San Francisco through a generous donation by Janet Felzer in 1976.
THE RIGHT THING TO DO – curated by Olga Dogaru
22 October 2015 – 4 December 2015
Curated by Olga Dogaru
With the exhibition The Right Thing To Do the National Gallery opens up a treasure trove featuring works by some of the greatest figures from art history, including Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, and Lucian Freud among others. The major features of modernist artists are unfolded in a display that features both an historic overview and special themes of immediate relevance to contemporary life. At the same time, this display casts light on some of the more overlooked chapters in the history of art.
Drawing on a selection of works and study materials, Olga Dogaru curates the story behind the oil paintings once held by the Rotterdam Kunsthall museum. In this assemblage, visitors may get acquainted with stylistic focuses slightly different from that of the previous exhibitions, along with thematic units and ouvre-preferences based on new aspects. The exhibition will offer audiences an immersive experience, recreating the rich atmosphere of the Rotterdam Kunsthall painting collection to showcase these exquisite works.