Monday, April 17, 2017

MUSEUM of the AMERICAN REVOLUTION, Philadelphia; Review By Polly Guerin

Oh, to be in Philadelphia on Wednesday, April 19th!!! It marks the 242nd anniversary of the "shot heard 'round the world" that ignited the American Revolutionary War in 1775 and quite appropriately it also marks the newest portal to Philadelphia's great historic landmarks, the MUSEUM of he AMERICAN REVOLUTION'S grand opening in the heart of historic Philadelphia this Wednesday. It is a logical location making Philadelphia the most exciting destination for those interested in exploring the birth of our nation.
      The museum tells the story of the founding of America in authentic and vivid interactive exhibitions. "We are very proud to tell that story in both its contradictions and its inspirations. At that time nothing seemed more improbable---first that roughly two million colonists spread across thirteen states could stand up to the full military might of the British empire," said Michael Quinn, president and CEO. "And, secondly that a society with slavery at its foundation and dispossession of Native Americans at its heart could articulate such powerful ideals as equality, dignity and freedom as its core."
        One of the premier collections of its kind, the Museum includes several thousand objects that span the Revolutionary era, from an elaborately decorated mug wishing "Liberty Forever" to the town of Boston, to a religious book owned by Martha Washington, and from a British military musket used during the opening battles of the Revolutionary War to the first newspaper printing of the Declaration of Independence.

     Then, too, there more than 20 life-like figures that appear individually or in historical vignettes, or tableaux, that re-create particular moments during the American Revolution. These include the statue of King George III as it is about to be torn down by a mob of angry New Yorkers, a pair of Loyalist cavalry troopers in the South (pictured left) and a conversation between enslaved Virginian and a black Loyalist soldier in 1781 (Above Right: picture MOAR jpg.) It is interesting to note that many enslaved African Americans joined the Loyalists because they were promised their freedom.
    While major skirmishes and battles of the War have their historic prominence, consideration is given to the Oneida Indians. There are lifelike figures of men and women wearing authentic 18th century apparel featured in a multimedia gallery dedicated to the Oneida Indian nation who supported the American Revolution. Sadly of note,  American leaders had promised that they would not forget their contributions, but after the war the tribe was pushed off its land and the Oneida scattered West to Wisconsin.
    The Museum is quite a treasure trove, recording as it does with such deep research and authenticity  Location 101 South Third Street (Corner of Third and Chestnut Streets).  All tickets are valid for two consecutive days and that is a good thing because you would need ta second visit; there is a wealth of information and a breathtaking number of visual enactments.
For ticket info: 267. 858.3308. www.AmRevMuseum.org. A restaurant and gift shop on the premises.
     Ta Ta Darlings!!! Stop first and see the introductory film on the first floor and throughout the exhibitions there are mini theater filmings.  Did I mention WASHINGTON'S HEADQUARTERS TENT? A must see, it is one of the most iconic surviving artifacts of the Revolution. Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Polly's other Blogs at www.pollytalk.com.
     







Monday, April 10, 2017

JAZZ AGE: AMERICAN STYLE 1920s: Review By Polly Guerin

Muse with Violen Screen, Rose Iron Works
The Jazz Age conjures up a spirit of modernity, a time between the first and second World Wars when Art Deco came into vogue and Scott Fitzgerald's Daisy was kicking up her heels in celebration of a new era of streamlined chic and futuristic yearning
    The  Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum's exhibition "THE JAZZ AGE: AMERICAN STYLE IN THE 1920s, on view through January 14, 2018, is the first major museum exhibition to focus on American taste in design during the exhilarating years of the 1920s, a period in which this decade provided the pivotal inspiration for new modernistic ideas in design, art and lifestyle.      With a nostalgic nod to the Jazz Age came extraordinary furniture, textiles, tableware, paintings, posters, jewelry and architecture in bold colors and geometric forms that defined this age. The popularity of Jazz provided the era's African-American sound track as did entertainers such as Josephine Baker who captured Paris with her banana dance.  Stop and watch a film that captures her talent in black and white modernity. Film clips of Duke Ellington and other Cotton Club performers and "The Jazz Singer" illustrate how cinema introduced modern interiors, graphic design and fashion to the American public. Image Left: Muse with Violin (detail) 1930, Rose Iron Works, Inc. (American, Cleveland, est. 1904). Paul Heher (Hungarian, 1895-1990), designer. Wrought iron brass, silver and gold plating. 156.2 x 156.2 cm. The Cleveland Museum of Art. On Loan from the Rose Iron Works Collections, LLC, 352.1996 (c) Rose Iron Works Collections, LLC. Photo: Howard Agriesti.   
Gorham Manufacturing Company, American 1927
Then too, there was the immense international design exposition in Paris in 1925---Exposition International des Arts Decoratifs et Industriels Modernes (whence Art Deco distilled its name)---a monumental exhibition where world designers, craftsmen, artists and manufacturers exhibited. One wonders why the United States declined to participate in this hallmark event. However, the Paris exhibition's innovative design influence quickly spread to New York and other major cities in department store furnishings and home decor, art galleries, in private collections and in high-end shops such as Cartier with its Art Deco inspired jewelry.
Image Right: Gorham Manufacturing Company, American 1927.  Master of modern silver, Eric Magnussen's iconic "cubic"silver coffee service with tray with patinated gilt decoration, which he did for "Gotham Lights and Shadows of  Manhattan." The Gorham Collection, Museum of Art, Rhode Island, School of Design, Providence, Rhode Island.
   

Through a rich array of more than 400 works drawn from both public and private collections, the new look included works by French makers such as Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann, who used lavish veneers and modified traditional forms and influenced American makers such as the W.&J Sloan's Company of Master Craftsmen.
    Designers trained in Austria and Germany, who later immigrated to the United States, brought a new aesthetic to American decorative arts, combined with an appreciation of American forms such as the skyscraper. Furnishings assumed a new modernity and skyscraper influence can be seen in a desk by Paul T. Frank while the abstract geometry of screen design reflected the streamlined chic of geometric forms. Image Left: A chair, from left by Walter von Nessen, a wood desk and chair by Paul T. Frank, and a pair of lacquered doors by Seraphin Soudbinine and Jean Dunand for the residence of Solomon R. Guggenheim. Late 1920s. Artists Rights Society (ARS) , NewYork.  Photo Chang W. Lee/The New York Times.
      Ta Ta Darlings!!! NOT TO BE MISSED: Running concurrently with the blockbuster exhibit is an exquisite, intimate and personal exhibit "Jeweled Splendors of the Art Deco Era, The Prince and Princess Sadruddin Aga Khan Collection installed in the Carnegie Mansion's Teak Room with over 100 luxury vanity and cigarette cases, compacts and clocks all from prestigious houses including Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, Boucheron and Bulgari.  Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Polly's Blogs at www.pollytalk.com and click in the left-hand column to the Blog that resonates with your interest on visionary men, amazing art deco divas, fashion historian and poetry.

Monday, April 3, 2017

REVISITING CHINA'S ANCIENT TREASURES at The MET: Review by Polly Guerin

Chariot Model (Modern Replica) Qin dynasty (221-206 B.C.)
There is a popular adage"You can't take it with you," but the rulers of the Qin and Han dynasties thought differently and their view of their afterlife meant taking their entire household, artifacts and vast army with them.
      Fortunately for us the preservation of these artifacts affords a rare opportunity today to see some of the most remarkable objects and archaeology excavated in China. WHERE? At the LANDMARK EXHIBITION OF ANCIENT CHINESE ART--FEATURING TERRACOTTA WARRIOR SCULPTURES AND RECENTLY EXCAVATED TREASURES NEVER BEFORE SCENE IN THE UNITED STATES.
     Age of Empires: Chinese Art o the Qin and Han Dynasties (221 B.C.- A.D. 220) explores  the unprecedented role of art in creating a new and lasting Chinese cultural identity. The exhibit opens today and is on view through July 16, 2017 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gallery 899, The Tisch Galleries.
     The ancient works in the exhibition include extremely rare ceramics, metalwork, textiles, sculpture, painting, calligraphy, and architectural models, all drawn fro 32 museums and archaeological institutions in the Peoples Republic of China, but a majority of the works have never before been seen in the West. 
       In the first gallery, you'll stop in your tracks. Along with the warriors, are bronze chariots complete with braces of well matched horses. However, take note that these in the exhibit are modern replicas created half the size of actual chariot groups found in the emperor's tomb. One of the chariots replicated here was probably used in battle or on the emperor's inspection tours. Image above: Chariot Model (Modern Replica, half-size of original), China. Original Qin dynasty (221-206 B. C.) Bronze with pigments lent by Emperor Qinshihuang's Mausoleum Site Museum. 
     
Kneeling Crossbow Archer, Qin Dynasty
The Qin and Han dynasties together make up the classical period of Chinese art and culture, when the basic forms of political organization and intellectual and paradigms were formed. The central theme of this period, and of this exhibition, is unification of the vast territory of China under the powerful Qin emperor, Qinshihuang, and its maintenance and expansion in the Han dynasty. 

     In his foresighted wisdom and desire to preserve his dynasty before Qinshihuang died, maybe he thought, "why go alone to the afterlife?  He took with him to his tomb an army of life-size terracotta warriors, over 700 archers, cavalry, infantry and officers, all in full armor made of stone (representing the iron armor used by the emperor's army).       They were buried with him in the emperor's mausoleum. The archer (right) had to shoot from a kneeling position, rather than standing. Take note, a modern replica of a crossbow such as he would have held is near by. 
     In creating the terracotta army, molds were used, in different arrangements, to compose the bodies of the warriors, but the faces were created with such diverse individuality that one can only stand in awe at the accuracy of their life-like expressions.
Image right: Kneeing Crossbow Archer, China, Qin dynasty (221-206 B.C.) terracotta with trades of pigments, H48 in. Lent by Emperor Qinshihuang's Mausoleum Site Museum. All photos Robert Ruben and Yvonne Korshak)
     
Female Dancer Han dynasty (206 B.C.-A.D. 9)
Though the army was high priority the emperor had a greater plan in mind. He made sure he had in his mausoleum everything he needed and most enjoyed in life. Believing that the soul could continue to enjoy in the afterlife all of he pleasures of living, he created a tomb that resembled underground palace--replete with entourages of favorite followers and entertainers, particularly images of court dancers, rare personal treasures, artifacts and even a dog.

     The highlights of the Han Dynasty in the exhibition include a monumental stone sculpture of a crouching lion, a a creature not native to China; a towering stone fluted column with dragons and a fluted silver box.  Luxury trade artifacts include necklaces made of amethyst, aquamarine, beryl, and rock crystal. Please note a small group of small, animal sculptures in carnelian and multifaceted gold beads. Image left: Female Dancer China, Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C.-A.D. 9) Earthenware with pigment. H. 17 5/8 in. Lent by Xuzhou City Museum.
     The exhibition is accompanied by a full illustrated catalogue, written by leading Chinese and Western scholars in the field. A full program and a scholarly symposium is offered during the course of the exhibition. www.metmuseum.org/exhibitions/listings/2017/age-of-empires. Or
#MetAeofEmpires,
      Ta Ta Darlings!!!  No need to travel.  This exhibition brings such remarkable treasures to our doorstep it's worth the visit just to see the Terracotta Warriors.  Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Polly's Blogs at www.pollytalk.com and click on the links in the left hand column to fashion, beauty, Art Deco Divas, visionary men and poetry.
     
     
       

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

ALEXEI JAWLENSKY at Neue Galerie: Review by Polly Guerin

Byzantine Woman (Bright Lips) 1913
The twists and turns of destiny weave interesting stories and Alexei Jawlensky's is worth the telling. Destined for a life in the military, he was the son of a Colonel in the Imperial Russian Army.
     Yet it took one decisive incident to change that prospect when Alexei Jawlensky's life (1864-1941) was forever altered by a visit to the 1880 Moscow World Exposition, which introduced him to painting. After attending school in Moscow he ventured forward and studied painting with the Russian realist painter llya Repin in St. Petersburg.
     For anyone unfamiliar with this Russian-born artist's oeuvre, the first full museum retrospective devoted to the expressionist artist to be held in the United States, is on view at the NEUE GALERIE in New York through May 29, 2017. Image Right: Byzantine Woman (Bright Lips), 1913, oil on board. Centre Pompidou, Musee National d'Art Moderne/Centre de creation industrielle. Donation de M. Robert Haas in 1982.
    Often women paved the way to support Jawlensky's artistic endeavors.  After growing increasingly disenchanted with realism, and after meeting Marianne von Werefkin in 1896, Jawlensky moved to Munich, where he and Vasily Kandinsky studied with Anton Azbe. At this time, Jawlensky became an integral member of the artistic avant-garde that advanced important developments in Expressionism and abstraction.     
     
Oberstdorf Mountains 1912
Then, too, Jawlensky became deeply influenced by the work of the Fauves after several trips to France, where he became familiar with the work of Paul Cezanne, Paul Gauguin, Henri Matisse and Vincent van Gogh. His companion Marianne von Werefkin, a wealthy artist in her own right, eventually gave up her own career to promote his work and provide him with a comfortable life. 

     In 1908 Jawlensky and Werefkin joined Kandinsky and his companion Gabriele Munter for several weeks to paint in the Bavarian town of Murnau, south of Munich, where they lived. The following year, Jawlensky, Kandinsky and others formed the Neue Kunstiervereinigung Munchen, an artists' association. With his newly established status among peers Jewlensky was friendly with Paul Klee, August Macke, Franz Marc, and artists associated with Der Blaue Reiter. Image: Artists Rights Society (ARS) , New York. Murnau, depicting the Bavarian village he visited with Kndinsky).    At the start of World War I, Jawlensky fled to Switzerland, where he met another artist, Emmy Scheyer in 1916, who abandoned her own work to champion his in the United States. 
     The exhibition includes approximately 75 paintings ranging in date from 1900 to 1937 and explores the chronological and thematic development of Jawlensky's work. The exhibition begins with early figure paintings, still-lifes, and landscapes, and continues with a series of paintings created between 1914 and 1921 known as Variations.  
     
Abstract Head Late Summer 1928
Take note of the semi-abstract works known as Mystical Heads, Savior's Faces and Abstract Heads, which reduce the human face to simple geometric forms and contrasting colors. These created during the Art Deco we noted for its streamlined and architectural sensibilities and modernism.

     Jawlensky's life work, which spanned evolving styles, may be considered a meditation on the process of change in his personal life from representation to abstraction. 
      Image Right: Abstract Head, Late Summer (Crescent Moon) 1928 from the collection of Long Beach Museum of Art, Milton Wichner Collection 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS).
      The exhibition concludes with the artists' late Meditations and Still-Lifes, a series of spiritual paintings created towards the end of his life, which stem from the piety of his Russian Orthodoxy.  In 1921, Jawlensky relocated to Wiesbaden in southern Germany, where he lived and worked until his death in 1941. Though Jawlensky's oeuvre is not well known in the United States, he did, however, during his time, exhibit widely in world circles and exerted a strong influence on key developments in modern art. A fully-illustrated catalogue, published by Prestal Verlag, accompanies the exhibition. www.neuegalerie.org. Neue Galerie New York, 1048 Fifth Avenue @ 86th Street. 212-628-6200.
     Ta Ta Darlings!!!  I love the way Jawlensky progressed from realism to abstraction and particularly his Deco heads.  Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Polly's Blogs at www.pollytalk.com.  In the left hand column click on the subject that resonates with your interest on visionary men, women determined to succeed, the fashion historian and poetry from the heart.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

MARSDEN HARTLEY'S MAINE at Met Breuer: Review by Polly Guerin

The Lighthouse (1940-1941) Marsden Hartley 
The rugged simplicity of his hardy subjects, the sound of the crashing sea against Maine's rugged coastal terrain and the magisterial Mount Katahdin epitomize the American Artist Marsden Hartley's lifelong artistic engagement with his home state of Maine.  
     The exhibition, MARSDEN HARTLEY'S MAINE, at The Met Breuer, through June 18, 2017, gives us pause to revisit Maine through Harley's creative lens.  On view are some 90 paintings and drawings that illuminate Hartley's extraordinarily expressive range that captures his Post-Impressionist interpretations to seasonal change in the inland Maine of the early 1900s. His folk-inspired depictions of salt--of- the-earth men---country hunks, lumberjacks, lobster men and loggers permeated his artistic world as did the rugged Maine coast, a theme that resonated with the wild and the majestic but brutal sea.  
Lobster Fisherman (1940-1941) The Metropolitan Museum of Art
NATIVE SON Born in Lewiston, Maine, in 1877, Hartley became known for his peripatetic nature, especially his time spent in Paris and Berlin, where he participated in the European avant-garde. Over the course of his career, his home state tugged at his heart strings and he returned to it repeatedly, painting Maine subjects even while living abroad.In the final chapter of his life Hartley proclaimed himself, "The Painter from Maine."  To Hartley Maine was a springboard to imagination and creative inspiration, a focus of memory and longing, a refuge, and a place for communion with earlier artists who painted there, especially Winslow Homer, the most famous American Artist associated with the State. 
     
Marsden Hartley,s Hunk at Old Orchard Beach 
Hartley began his career by painting and exhibiting views of the state's western hills in a vibrant painterly style, seen in works such as The Silence of High Noon--Midsummer (1907-1908), which he debuted in 1909 at his first solo exhibition at Alfred Stieglitz's art gallery, 291.  One entire gallery is devoted to Hartley's bold, audacious figure paintings, such as Man Hunk, a sex symbol of the man culture and a homage to Cezanne's 'The Bather.'  
The Met's presentation of the exhibition includes select works from the Museum's collection by other artists who shaped Hartley's vision, including Cezanne,and American painters Winslow Homer and Albert Pinkham Ryder.
     A series of related programs is planned in conjunction with the exhibition, includes a lecture, exhibition tours, a series of talks, a Teen Studio Workshop, and a Picture This! program for adults who are blind or partially sighted.  For futher details visit: www.metmuseum.org/Marsden Hartley. The exhibition is also featured on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter via the hashtag #MarsenHartley.
     The performance IVES & HARTLEY LANDSCAPES OF MODERNISM---Sight and Sound Series with Leon Boststein and The Orchestra NOW, will take place on Sunday, May 21, 2017, at 2:00 pm in the Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium at The Met Fifth Avenue. In this orchestral set---titled "Ives's Three Places in New England and the Artwork of Marsden Hartley---Connecticut-born composer Charles Ives set out to evoke through music the atmosphere and history of three locations in New England. Marsden Hartley, his contemporary was himself deeply attached to music. The artist returned to Maine in his final years and applied his modernist aesthetic to its landscapes. Hartley died in Ellsworth, Maine in 1943.
     Ta Ta Darlings!!! Take a vicarious trip to Maine and upon alighting on the 3rd floor be welcomed by a panoramic pulsating film of the Maine's coasting with the relentless raging sea in cold gray visions of brutal nature. Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Polly's BLOGS at www.pollytalk.com and click in the left-hand column to links to visionary men, women determined to succeed, poetry from the heart and the fashion historian.
      

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

SMALL WONDERS: Gothic Boxwood Miniatures at The Cloisters: Review by Polly Guerin

The Boxwood Rosary 
The execution of miniature prayer beads and diminutive altarpieces is as miraculous as the stories they tell, yet today we can behold them with sense of wonder and awe at The Met Cloisters in the recently opened exhibition SMALL WONDERS: Gothic Boxwood Miniatures. In the Glass Gallery, Gallery #10 through May 21, 2017. 
     Small in scale, yet teaming with life, miniature boxwood carvings have been a source of wonder since their creation in the Netherlands in the 16th century.  We are at once amazed and stunned by the miracles of the Bible that unfold on a tiny stage, and  the artists who created these treasures, surely for Kings and only the wealthy could afford to own. These intricately carved objects require intense scrutiny. Some measure a mere two inches (five centimeters) in diameter  and hold stories and legends in the intriguing depth and articulation of their creation. Image Left: Rosary of Floris van Egmond and Margaretha van Glymes, Netherlands 1500-1539. (c) Musee du Louvre, Department des Objects d'art, Paris. Photo: Craig Boyko/Ian Lefebvre.
      Take a peak at another boxwood rosary made for King Henry VIII of England and his first wife, Katherine of Aragon, before his notorious efforts to dissolve the marriage and his break from the Catholic church. From the Devonshire Collection, Chatsworth, Trustees of Chatsworth Settlement complex bears the Royal Arms of England as well as the tiny letters "He8" and "Ka" abbrevations for King Henry the VIII and his first wife, who he married in 1509.
TRANSFORMING BOXWOOD:  The artists transformed boxwood into something utterly new, tiny, intricate carvings, the likes of which had never been seen or imagined before.  These creative geniuses took a material understood today merely as an ornamental plant and exploited its sculptural potential. In their hands entire worlds emerged from dense and fine-grained wood. The ingenious techniques of the artists who created these precious panoramas have defied comprehension for centuries.  Now, through the joint efforts of the conservators at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto and the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, the carvers' secrets have at last been revealed. 
   
A closeup articulation of a Battle Scene
The exhibition, the first of its kind, features nearly 50 of these tiny treasures that offer us access not by travel but through the eyes of prayer and a sense of wonder. The original owners of these works of art had the luxury of cradling them in their own hands, and oh what tales are told!  There are men on horseback wielding spears, dogs and camels and chained monkeys, women fainting, saints enduring devils tormenting, and angels singing. All composed with the exceptional skill of the carver then, they demand close observation on your part now.

     
Prayer Bead Adoration of the Magi 
A video revealing the intricacies of the carver's merit accompanies the exhibition but no adjective has ever been adequate to express the sense of wonder and amazement that the miniatures elicit. In addition to the exquisite collection an installation with sculpture, tools, and eyeglasses deserves your attention. It celebrates the work of the Italian woodcarver Ottaviano Jannella renowned for his masterful and ingenious manipulation of boxwood. While later in date than the Netherlandish works featured here, the assemblage of carvings, tools and materials bears witness to the extraordinary technical accomplishment of sculptors who created intricate worlds from modest blocks of wood.

BIBLE IN MINIATURE: In a miniature altarpiece with the Adoration of the Magi, Netherlands, early 16th century, the entourage of the Wise Men pay homage of Jesus including camels and an elephant. The names of these magi are spelled out beneath: Casper, Melchior, and Balthasar Images of lions had long served as supports for altarpieces and reliquaries.  Here they give a sense of ferociousness or even vigilance, rather they appear well fed and sleep. Image Left: Prayer Bead with the Adoration of the Magi and the Crucifixion Netherlandish, early 16th century. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan 1917. Photo: Peter Zeray.
     Patience is required to fully appreciate these incredible treasures. As the visitor gently lean over window cases they observe remarkable Biblical stories in boxwood carvings that tell intricate stories of saints and sinners. The exhibition is accompanied by a visitor's guide published by the Art Gallery of Ontario and a catalogue published by the Rijksmuseum. Both books are available in The Met Store. 
     Ta Ta Darlings!!!  It's a challenging exhibition, but one that will leave you stunned by its
diminutive beauty and in awe by the skilled workmanship of the carvers. Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Pollys Blogs at www.pollytalk.com.

Monday, March 6, 2017

PASSAGES THROUGH TIME: Turner Port Scenes: Review By Polly Guerin

Picture brilliant luminosity, turbulent seascapes drenched with sunlit brilliance and mesmerizing atmospheric effects,  and the work of Britain's greatest land- and seascape painter of the nineteenth century, Joseph Mallord William Turner, comes to mind.  We are at first stunned by the dazzling treatment of light and color. The paintings urge use to look deep into the longstanding subject in art, the port, a place of arrival and departure that links the city interior and the open water beyond, evoking a sense of journey and the passage of time.    Image Left: Harbor of Dieppe: Changement de Domicile, J..M.W. Turner, exhibited 1825, subsequently dated 1826. Oil on Canvas, 68 3/8 x 88 3/4 inches, The Frick Collection. Photo: Michael Bodycomb.
'Turner's Modern and Ancient Ports: PASSAGES THROUGH TIME' at the Frick Collection, through May 14, 2017, brings together paintings, watercolors, sketchbooks and prints of the master painter. The exhibition has tremendous impact as it is organized around three large-scale port scenes, with the Frick's grand scale Harbor  of Dieppe and Cologne, both painted by the artist in the mid-1820s and unites them for the first time publicly with a closely related yet unfinished work from the Tate, London, that depicts the harbor of Brest, in Brittany.
      The harbors of Dieppe and Cologne, purchased more than a hundred years ago by Henry Clay Frick, having been restricted from travel, they have not been exhibited elsewhere for the past century.           Grace Galassi, Senior Curator commented:
"We are thrilled to provide our audiences with insight into Turner's masterful technique and process by reuniting the Frick's ports, which themselves have never been the focus of an exhibition, with a third harbor scene fro the Tate on a similar scale, along with other port scenes---both imagined and set in the present---in oil and watercolor that reveal how the artist developed over time." This trio of port scenes is accompanied by more than thirty of Turner's oil paintings, watercolors, sketchbooks, and prints, among them other contemporary views of France, Germany and England, as well as imagined scenes set in ancient Carthage and Rome.  Image Right: J.M.W, Turner: The arrival of a Packet-Boat: Evening, Exhibited in 1826-1828, oil on canvas. 66 3/8 x 88 1/4 inches, The Frick Collection. Photo: Michael  Bodycomb.
 TURNER and TRAVEL With Napoleon' decisive defeat at Waterloo in 1815, a new era of tourism began. Travel restrictions between England and France that have been in place since 1797 were lifted, and contact with the Continent was renewed. British artists, writers, and the public took the opportunity and crossed the Channel in droves to rediscover it. English ports were now being transformed into commercial hubs and seaside resorts. 
    It is interesting to note that the central decades of Turner's career coincided with political, technological and cultural developments that created a new context for his depictions of ports. The advent of he steamboat and high speed carriages as well as improved roads made travel easier and more accessible to a larger segment of the population, including the middle class.      
As a market developed for images of the picturesque sights that travelers had seen or planned to visit and Turner as an insatiable traveler and the foremost topographical artist of the period, was well equipped to meet the demand. On his extensive trips he filled notebooks with sketches of land formations, architecture, ships and people of the era at both work and play. Image Left: J.M.W. Turner, Dover Castle from the Sea, for Marine Views, 1822, Watercolor and gouache on paper, 15 15/16 x 23 5/8 inches, Museum of Find Arts, Boston, Bequest of David P. Kimball, in memory of his wife, Clara Bertram Kimball (c) Museum of Fine Arts,
The accompanying book, published by Yale University Press is available in the Museum Shop, hardcover $45, Softcover $25.  FIRST FRIDAYS: Museum admission and gallery programs are FREE from 6 to 9 pm o the first Friday of the month (except January). For additional information contact 212.288.0700. www.frick.org.
     Ta Ta Darlings!!! An adjacent room to the exhibited has a continuous running narrated film that coincides with the exhibit. Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com. Visit Polly's BLOGS at www.pollytalk.com and click in the left hand column on the link that resonates with your interest on visionary men,  amazing art deco women, fashion historian and poetry.