Rembrandt, Rubens, Gainsborough and the Golden Age of Painting Orlando Museum of Art
January 25 – May 25, 2014
Paintings From the Speed Art Museum, Louisville, KentuckyTremendous changes swept Europe between 1600 and 1800, the years in which the art in this exhibition was produced. Religious upheavals transformed the way people thought about and utilized art. Trade routes to faraway lands, such as China and India, became more established, ensuring a steady stream of exotic goods for European consumers. Advances in the sciences transformed long held views on the way the universe worked and the place of humans within that universe. Technical aspects of art making were honed and codified, as art academies grew in number and power.
These exciting times resulted in a golden age of European painting. The number of artists and the number of art collectors grew exponentially during this period, as the fine arts reached an increasingly wider audience. This exhibition will feature 71 paintings from this remarkable period by Rembrandt van Rijn, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony Van Dyck, Jan Steen, Jacob van Ruisdael, William Hogarth, Thomas Gainsborough and Pompeo Batoni, among many others.
Comprised of the major genres of painting that were popular at this time – portraits, religious paintings, landscapes, scenes of everyday life, still lifes and interpretations of classical antiquity – this exhibition will illustrate both the people and the objects that made the two centuries between 1600 and 1800 such a rich cultural age. Highlighting work from Italy, France, Spain, Flanders, the Netherlands, Germany and England, this exhibition will illustrate how the tremendous changes in religion and science, coupled with the economic growth that swept Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, gave way to a period of incredible artistic creation.
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