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Masters of Seventeenth-Century Dutch Genre Painting
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Masters of Seventeenth-Century Dutch Genre Painting
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Curator: Sutton, Peter C.
Masters of Seventeenth-Century Dutch Genre Painting
Exhibition Installation View
March 18, 1984 - May 13, 1984
As no other people before them, the 17th-century Dutch left a detailed visual record of their society, land, and possessions. The richness and beauty of Dutch genre painting--scenes of everyday life--is revealed in 120 paintings lent by museums and private collections in Europe and the United States, the first major exhibition of the subject ever mounted in this country. With the rise of the Dutch republic in the 17th century came a new prosperity, a growth in the urban middle classes, and a corresponding increase in the ordinary citizen's demand for art. Everyday life often formed the subject matter of the Dutch burgher's new paintings. Steen's boisterous scenes of drinking and holiday merriment, the more refined pleasures depicted by Vermeer and ter Borch, and the simple images of work, whether in de Hooch's light-filled domestic interiors or Breklenkam's cobblers' shops, have a compelling truth to life. The naturalistic appearance of Dutch genre, however, can be misleading. These paintings could function on many different levels, from purely reportorial to profoundly symbolic. This exhibition explores these meanings and relates them to the larger contexts of the history of the painting type and Dutch culture generally. "Masters of 17th-Century Dutch Genre Painting" was organized by Peter C. Sutton, Associate Curator of European Painting before 1900 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, in cooperation with the Gemaldegalerie, Staatliche Museen Preussischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin (West), and the Royal Academy of Arts, London where it will travel after leaving Philadelphia. The exhibition was made possible by a grant from Mobil and is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, a Federal agency, The Pew Memorial Trust, and an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. --From Philadelphia Museum of Art Spring 1984 leaflet
Genre painting, Dutch--Exhibitions
ID Number
Organizer: Stiftung Preussischer Kulturbesitz. Staatliche Museen (German museum, contemporary); Royal Academy of Arts (English fine arts academy, London, founded 1768); Philadelphia Museum of Art (American repository, Philadelphia, contemporary)
European Painting before 1900, the John G. Johnson Collection, and the Rodin Museum
Philadelphia Museum of Art (American repository, Philadelphia, contemporary)
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