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"Masterpieces and Master Collectors: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings from the Hermitage and Guggenheim Museums"
2001-09-16 until 2002-03-17
Guggenheim Hermitage Museum
Las Vegas, NV,
USA United States of America
The inaugural exhibition at the Guggenheim Hermitage Museum presents a selection of 45 masterpieces that highlights the distinct but highly complementary strengths of these two world-renowned collections. From September 16, 2001, through March 17, 2002, Masterpieces and Master Collectors: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings from the Hermitage and Guggenheim Museums will feature key examples of Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, and early Modernism, including exceptional paintings by Cézanne, Chagall, Kandinsky, Matisse, Monet, Picasso, Renoir, and van Gogh.
The exhibition focuses on the point at which the two collections overlap: the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. This period marks the time when Paris’s radical avant-garde was rejecting the finished surfaces, naturalistic colors, realistically rendered forms, and stock compositions of conventional Salon painting. What resulted were bold new ways of painting, exemplified by broken brushstrokes, vibrant color, subject matter from modern life, and frank formal investigations of visual tensions created by painting three-dimensional forms on flat canvas.
Several of the Guggenheim’s contributions to the exhibition are part of the Thannhauser Collection, an extensive suite of late 19th - and early 20th - century masterpieces donated to the museum by the German-born dealer and collector Justin K. Thannhauser (1892-1976) and his wife Hilde (1919-1991). Many other works are gifts from Solomon R. Guggenheim’s private collection, or museum purchases made under his auspices. Another painting, Picasso’s The Studio (1928), comes from The Peggy Guggenheim Collection. Peggy Guggenheim (1898-1979) was Solomon’s niece, and she transferred her collection and palazzo in Venice to the Guggenheim Foundation in 1976. Before the 1917 Russian revolution, most of the Hermitage paintings in the exhibition belonged in the private holdings of Sergei Shchukin and Ivan Morozov, two prominent Russian businessmen who each developed world-class collections of French paintings.