Impressionism, American paintings highlight new Shelburne Museum season

Edouard Manet (French, 1832-1883), The Grand Canal, Venice, 1875, oil on canvas. Shelburne Museum.
Edouard Manet (French, 1832-1883), The Grand Canal, Venice, 1875, oil on canvas. Shelburne Museum.

French Impressionism and American paintings highlight the new exhibitions opening in the upcoming season at Shelburne Museum, Director Thomas Denenberg announced.

Throughout May and June, four new exhibitions will open, including two focused on quilts – a solo exhibition of contemporary textile art and a collection of 19th century star quilts.

“The new season’s exhibitions at Shelburne Museum celebrate the best of the museum’s collections,” Denenberg said. “Works by Claude Monet, Edouard Manet, and Edgar Degas – newly interpreted and literally under new light in the Pizzagalli Center for Art and Education – will come to life in a way that will captivate viewers anew. American paintings from the collection – many of which haven’t been on view in decades and many newly conserved – will once again delight visitors. Top that off with two extraordinary quilt exhibitions, one contemporary and one 19th century, and you have a season that is quintessentially Shelburne.”

“In a New Light: French Impressionism Arrives in America” highlights Impressionist paintings from Shelburne’s collection and pays homage to Monet’s “Le Pont, Amsterdam” (The Drawbridge, Amsterdam) (1874), a work collected by museum founder Electra Havemeyer Webb’s parents. It was the first painting by Monet to become part of an American collection. The exhibition includes works on loan from private collectors and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. “In a New Light” is guest curated by scholar Margaret Burgess and opens on June 14.

“Painting a Nation: American Art at Shelburne Museum” showcases the best of the museum’s 19th century American paintings. The exhibition represents a renewed emphasis on American art at Shelburne and will focus on themes of the collection’s strengths, particularly the New England landscape, genre painting and portraiture.

Featured artists include Winslow Homer, William Mathew Prior, Mary Cassatt, Grandma Moses, Andrew Wyeth, and more.  The exhibition opens on May 25.

An exhibition of contemporary quilts opens on May 11, which is also the season opening day for the museum’s main campus. “Nancy Crow, Seeking Beauty: Riffs on Repetition” highlights recent works by the acclaimed contemporary textile artist who incorporates printmaking in her quilt making. “All Star Quilts: The John Wilmerding Collection” features more than 30 unique star-themed quilts, including Amish and Mennonite examples from Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana, and will be on view starting June 27.

Two exhibitions currently on view in the Pizzagalli Center are “John Bisbee: New Blooms,” featuring monumental sculpture made from 12-inch nails and “Supercool Glass,” which juxtaposes 19th century objects from Shelburne Museum’s collections with contemporary works by more than a dozen glass artists. “New Blooms” is on view through May 26 and “Supercool Glass” is on view through June 8.

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