Published: September 13, 2011
Beginning September 18, Jusepe de Ribera’s monumental portrait of Mary Magdalene from the collection of the Museo Nacional del Prado will be on view at the Meadows Museum at Southern Methodist University. The exhibit, “Ribera: Mary Magdalene in a New Context,” which runs through January 15, marks the second year of the museum’s international partnership with the Prado and will include other notable works by Ribera from international museums and private collections, as well as works by the artist and his followers from the Meadows’ permanent collection.
The exhibition is part of the museum’s three-year partnership with the Prado, a collaboration that includes the organization of focused exhibitions centered on pivotal masterpieces on loan from the Prado, scholarly texts that will advance the understanding of Spanish art and an internship exchange between the two institutions. Curated by Dr Gabriele Finaldi, associate director of collections and research at the Prado, the exhibition will examine Ribera’s representation of Mary Magdalene and other saintly females as a departure from his traditional style.
This initiative is accompanied by a bilingual publication published by the Meadows Museum in collaboration with the Museo Nacional del Prado. The exhibition’s inauguration will feature a symposium on September 16.
Though Ribera is known for his dark and startling works, often depicting scenes of horror, his representation of the Magdalene is tender, emphasizing the beauty and elegance of his subject. The Magdalene was a central devotional figure in Seventeenth Century Italy and Spain, and was a frequent subject for paintings of the time. Ribera painted the Magdalene several times, consistently portraying her as a sympathetic and sensitive figure.
Ribera’s “Magdalene” will be accompanied by three additional loans: “Assumption of the Magdalene,” 1636, from the Museo de la Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid; “Saint Mary of Egypt in Ecstasy,” circa 1640, from the Colección Pérez Simón in Mexico City; and “Saint Mary of Egypt,” 1651, from the Museo Civico Gaetano Filangieri in Naples, Italy.
The Meadows Museum is at 5900 Bishop Boulevard. For information, 214-768-4677 or www.meadowsmuseumdallas.org .
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