National Gallery 2013 Exhibitions

Issued June 2012

Sainsbury Wing

Barocci: Brilliance and Grace
27 February – 19 May 2013

Vermeer and Music: Love and Leisure in the Dutch Golden Age
26 June – 8 September 2013

The Portrait in Vienna 1867–1918
9 October 2013 – 12 January 2014

Sunley Room

Michael Landy: Saints Alive
23 May – 24 November 2013

Room 1

Frederic Church: American Master of the Oil Sketch
6 February – 28 April 2013

Birth of a Collection: The Barber Institute of Fine Arts and the National Gallery
22 May – 1 September 2013

Barocci: Brilliance and Grace

27 February – 19 May 2013
Supported by The Joseph F McCrindle Foundation

Sainsbury Wing
Admission charge

Federico Barocci (1535–1612) is celebrated as one of the most talented artists of late 16th-century Italy. Fascinated by the human form, he fused charm and compositional harmony with an unparalleled sensitivity to colour.

Thanks to the cooperation of the Soprintendenze delle Marche, the exhibition will showcase Barocci’s most spectacular Marchigian altarpieces, including his famous 'Entombment' from Senigallia and 'Last Supper' from Urbino Cathedral – never before seen outside Italy. In total, 16 of his most important altarpieces and devotional paintings and five of his finest portraits will be on display alongside their preparatory drawings and oil sketches.

Barocci was an incessant and even obsessive draughtsman, preparing every composition with prolific studies in every conceivable medium. Drawing from life and inspired by the people and animals that surrounded him, his works are characterised by a warmth and humanity that transform his religious subjects into themes with which all can identify.

Vermeer and Music: Love and Leisure in the Dutch Golden Age*

26 June – 8 September 2013
Sainsbury Wing
Admission charge

This exhibition explores the concept of music as a pastime of the elite in the northern Netherlands during the 17th century.

Vermeer and Music: Love and Leisure in the Dutch Golden Age will bring together for the first time the National Gallery’s two paintings by Vermeer, Young Woman Standing at a Virginal and Young Woman Seated at a Virginal, and Vermeer’s 'Guitar Player', on exceptional loan from the Iveagh Bequest, Kenwood House. The exhibition aims to enhance viewers’ appreciation of these beautiful and evocative paintings by Vermeer and his contemporaries by juxtaposing them with musical instruments and songbooks of the period. Visitors will be able to compare 17th-century virginals, guitars, lutes and other instruments with their painted representations to judge the accuracy of representation and what liberties the painter might have taken to enhance the visual or symbolic appeal of his work. In 17th-century Dutch paintings, music often figured as a metaphor for harmony, a symbol of transience or, depending on the type of music being performed, an indicator of one’s education and position in society. Musical instruments and songbooks were also included as attributes in elegant portraits to suggest that the sitter was accomplished in this area.

*Working title

The Portrait in Vienna 1867–1918

9 October 2013 – 12 January 2014
Sponsored by Credit Suisse Partner of the National Gallery

Sainsbury Wing
Admission charge

The Portrait in Vienna 1867–1918 is the first exhibition to explore Viennese portraiture during the Austro-Hungarian Empire, showing both the continuity and the rupture between the Biedermeier and imperial traditions of the 19th century and the innovations of avant-garde artists such as Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Richard Gerstl and Oskar Kokoschka in the years around 1900. The period is widely regarded as the time when the avant-garde overthrew the academy.

The exhibition explores how portraiture came to be closely identified with the distinctive flourishing of modern art in Vienna during its famed fin-de-siècle years. It is divided into six sections: Biedermeier-Modern (the rediscovery around 1900 of early 19th-century portraits of the Alt-Wien bourgeoisie); Modern Family/Modern Child; The Artist; Modern Men/Modern Women; Love and Loss (the use of the portrait to declare love and commemorate the dead); and Finish and Failure (unfinished works abandoned by frustrated artists, or rejected by outraged sitters).

Michael Landy: Saints Alive

23 May – 24 November 2013
Supported by the Rootstein Hopkins Foundation

Sunley Room
Admission free

Michael Landy is the 2013 Rootstein Hopkins Associate Artist in residence at the National Gallery. In May, the Sunley Room will display seven large-scale kinetic sculptures representing a contemporary view of the lives of the saints. In representing the saints, a subject more often associated with traditional sacred art than with contemporary work, Landy has embarked on a revelatory subject for the exhibition.

The large-scale sculptures consist of fragments of National Gallery paintings cast in three dimensions and assembled with one of Landy’s hallmarks – refuse. By scouring car boot sales and flea markets, Landy has accumulated old machinery, cogs and wheels to produce surprising sculptures that revive an often overlooked subject. Landy’s interest in recycling intriguingly extends to recycling religious iconography for a 21st-century audience. Born in London in 1963, Landy attended Goldsmiths College and is part of the generation of artists who became known as the YBAs (Young British Artists). He is best known for his 2001 installation, 'Break Down' where he catalogued and then destroyed all of his possessions in a former department store in London.

Frederic Church: American Master of the Oil Sketch

6 February – 28 April 2013
Supported by the Terra Foundation for American Art

Room 1
Admission free

This exhibition displays one highly important aspect of the work of the celebrated American landscape painter, Frederic Edwin Church (1826–1900), his landscape oil sketches. Church was a leading member of the Hudson River School of landscape painters, active in the mid-19th century, and a key American exponent of the oil sketch.

Oil sketches have become objects of appreciation and study in their own right. Among students of American art, Church’s sketches in particular are admired for their freshness and originality. This exhibition – organised in collaboration with the Terra Foundation for American Art and the National Galleries of Scotland – brings together some 30 oil sketches. Works are drawn from the incomparable collections of the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, New York, and Olana, Church’s picturesque estate along the Hudson River, now a New York State Historic Site. They are joined in the exhibition by a single, monumental painting, 'Niagara Falls, from the American Side' (1867), showing the relationship between sketch and finished masterpiece.

Birth of a Collection: The Barber Institute of Fine Arts and the National Gallery*

22 May – 1 September 2013
Room 1
Admission free

In December 2012, the Barber Institute of Fine Arts at the University of Birmingham commemorates the 80th anniversary of its foundation. This exhibition will form part of a year-long programme to celebrate the occasion. It will also be one of the key manifestations of a formal research partnership between the National Gallery and the Barber. Birth of a Collection will explore the very earliest acquisitions made for the Henry Barber Trust by Professor Thomas Bodkin, the first director of the Barber Institute (1935–52). It will focus on the 12 superb Old Master and 19th-century paintings he purchased while the building was being constructed (1936–9). In this period, most of these paintings were loaned to, and displayed or stored at, the National Gallery, thanks to the support and friendship of the brilliant young director, Kenneth Clark. For the first time in over 70 years the exhibition will reunite this group of outstanding paintings in Trafalgar Square. Old Master paintings in the loan include works by Simone Martini, Giovanni Battista Cima da Conegliano, Frans Hals and Nicolas Poussin. From the 19th century are masterpieces by Joseph Mallord William Turner, Claude Monet and Edouard Manet.

*Working title

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