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Past Exhibitions

The Stahl Collection

August 01, 2015, through December 07, 2015
Georges Rouault, Amazone (Equestrian)

The Hood Museum of Art's striking installation of thirty prints, drawings, and ceramics from the recently donated Stahl collection presents a wonderful opportunity to learn from art objects chosen by passionate, discerning collectors. Assembled over a period of sixty years, these highlights include bold, socially critical German Expressionist prints by Max Beckmann, Ludwig Meidner, and Emil Nolde, complemented by early twentieth-century American works on paper in a social realist mode. A cornerstone of the Stahl collection, assembled over decades, is Georges Rouault’s poignant series of eight aquatints titled The Circus (Le Cirque), 1930. The installation also features late twentieth-century works by New Hampshire artists, including James Aponovich and pioneering ceramicists Gerry Williams and Edwin and Mary Scheier. These highlights are drawn from the 118 works donated by Susan E. Hardy, Nancy R. Wilsker, Sarah A. Stahl, and John S. Stahl, the children of the original collectors, the late Barbara J. and David G. Stahl, Dartmouth Class of 1947. The high quality of the works, combined with their strong thematic links to a wide range of academic fields, makes these new acquisitions... read more

Canaletto's Vedute Prints

An Exhibition in Honor of Adolph Weil Jr.

August 01, 2015, through December 06, 2015
Giovanni Antonio Canal (Canaletto), Title Plate

Although the Italian eighteenth-century artist Antonio Canaletto is best known for his luminous, sweeping views of the Grand Canal and Piazza San Marco, the Vedute, a portfolio of prints made in the early 1740s, reveal another side of Venice. These scenes are intimate in scale and contain an extraordinary variety of subject matter, encompassing both real and imaginary views, from urban portraits to bucolic landscapes. This exhibition presents the full range of Canaletto’s Vedute project and celebrates the legacy of Adolph J. “Bucks” Weil, Class of 1935, an astute and generous collector who over his lifetime amassed one of the most impressive collections of Old Master prints in the country.

The City as Memory Machine

August 29, 2015, through December 06, 2015

Life in the city is lived in daily patterns of mobility. Each day, most of us stroll past the same shops and cafés, or distractedly gaze across receding rooftops from the vantage of an elevated train. We often think of time spent in transit as lost time, life on the periphery of real living. But as the French anthropologist Marc Augé has shown us, traveling through the city is a practice of history and memory. Instead of life lost, cities unfold at the stop-and-go pace of a crowded bus line. Along the way, monuments to the city’s collective history spark personal, individualized memories. In those fleeting moments, as the bus rolls along, we may be struck by the memory of a childhood trip to Central Park or suddenly recall a moment of heartbreaking loss. On the commute, the past and the present intermingle in barely recognized flashes of illumination, all in the time it takes to glance up from the morning newspaper. 

In his ethnography of the Paris Metro, Marc Augé refers to the Metro map as a “memory machine,” arguing that each stop highlighted on the map indexes and generates individual and shared experiences of place. The works of art in this exhibition offer... read more

Goddesses, Models, & Prostitutes

An Exploration of the Reclining Female Nude

89
July 18, 2015, through August 30, 2015

The reclining female nude has been a recurring theme in Western art since the 1500s. It began with erotic images portraying an idealized woman (often in the guise of a goddess) for the pleasure of the male viewer. Through her passive, reclined pose, she offers her body for our gaze; her recumbent nudity implies that she is sexually available. She represents sensuality, beauty, and desire. As the subject of the female nude became canonized, artists began to expand the ways in which it was represented. She can be depicted alone or with guests and companions. With each incarnation of the reclining female nude, the tradition continues to grow and change.

The Golden Age

Seventeenth-Century Art in the Netherlands

March 31, 2015, through May 31, 2015

This exhibition showcases seventeenth century Dutch and Flemish paintings and prints from the Hood Museum of Art’s collection. It includes a dramatic seascape, a still life, Biblical subjects, scenes of everyday life, and several portraits by artists including Rembrandt, Frans Hals, Hendrik Goltizus, and Anthony van Dyck. The exhibition was organized in conjunction with Art History Professor Joy Kenseth’s course on Northern Baroque art, which examines painting in Flanders and Holland from 1600 to 1700. These works touch on many of the course’s themes and the students will examine and write papers on selected works throughout the term.

The Tortured Soul

Exploring the Excesses of Human Emotion

87
April 11, 2015, through May 24, 2015

When encountering the tortured soul, one is forced to confront aspects of the human experience that are often easier to ignore. The tragedies of human folly frequently appear in literature and have captured the attention of a variety of people, including artists. Often the aberrant behavior of a troubled individual comes as the result of excess, whether it is lust for power, greed, love, or some emotion that is felt so intensely that the pull is irresistible, regardless of consequences. As artists depict these struggles, the relationship between the rational and irrational comes into play. Questions arise about the role of imagination and creativity in the face of fact and logic. Both imagination and reason have much to offer; yet both can be dangerous. The works of art featured in The Tortured Soul represent the darker aspects of humanity described in literature in order to reveal continuities with contemporary life.

Poseidon and the Sea

Myth, Cult, and Daily Life

January 17, 2015, through March 15, 2015
Roman, statue of Poseidon / Neptune alongside dolphin

The realm of Poseidon encompassed virtually every aspect of life in the ancient Mediterranean world, from mythology and cult to daily activities. This exhibition explores each of his dominions through more than one hundred works of Greek, Etruscan, and Roman art produced between 800 BCE and 400 CE. Visitors will see striking black-figure and red-figure pottery, alongside sculptures in terracotta, marble, and precious metals, and extraordinary examples of ancient glass, mosaics, carved gems, and coins, all providing a rich picture of life in the ancient world. Poseidon and the Sea offers an intimate look not only at the mysteries of the ancient world, but also at the timeless beauty and wonder of the sea that continues to resonate with us in the present day.

The Object World

February 06, 2015, through March 15, 2015

The world is comprised of objects. These discrete items acquire meaning through relationships and context, yet are defined by their own autonomy. To give order to the things that surround us, we create categories, which, in turn, rely upon cultural connotations that impart meaning, value, and significance. The common language of things can convey a multiplicity of ideas such as concerns, class, or interests. The audience interprets the subjects by and through the objects that surround them.

Works of art present a special category as they occupy several object worlds simultaneously. Artworks epitomize Graham Harman’s definition of a “real object” as one that has not an outer effect, but an inner one. The tactility of the object is, of course, present, but the value lies not purely in its physical qualities, but in what it evokes.

This exhibition was curated by Katie Hornstein, assistant professor of Art History, and Jane Carroll, senior lecturer of Art History, in conjunction with their class Introduction to Art History II. Students used these works of art for a writing assignment. This exhibition has been made possible by the Harrington Gallery Fund.

Creating the Feminine

Representations of Biblical Women from Sixteenth-Century Germany

85
November 08, 2014, through February 15, 2015

Many artists in sixteenth-century Germany created images of biblical women and female saints. The ultimate woman, Eve, brought life and, through her sin, death to the entire world. Biblical accounts also describe an alternative female trope, the virgin martyr or saint. These two ends of the spectrum did not constitute the only ways women could be depicted, and images varied depending on what an artist chose to emphasize.

The Beauty of Bronze

Selections from the Hood Museum of Art

October 13, 2012, through March 18, 2014

Bronze—a combination of copper, tin, and small amounts of other metals—has long been prized for its preciousness, endurance, and ability to register fine details and reflect light.   It is strong and durable, making it ideal for modeling expressive gestures, yet—in molten form—it is malleable enough to be suitable for creating intricate shapes. The term “bronze” is often used for other metals as well, including brass, which is an alloy of copper and zinc.

There are two basic methods of casting a bronze in order to make multiple versions of the same design. Sand casting—developed in the early nineteenth century in Europe—is a relatively simple and less expensive technique that relies upon disparate molds made of compacted fine-grained sand that allow for easy production and assembly. Traditional lost-wax casting uses wax models in two manners, or methods, both of which date from antiquity. In the “direct” method, the original wax model itself is used (and thereby destroyed); in the “indirect” method, reusable plaster molds are taken from the original wax model.

The medium’s intrinsic tensile strength and ability to render precise features and various surfaces have... read more

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