Published: January 11, 2011
“German Drawings from the Walters’ Collection” are on view at the Walters Museum of Art to February 13 on the fourth floor Drawing Gallery.
The Walters family, William, Ellen and their children, Henry and Jennie, spent the years from 1861 to 1865 in Europe. Although William Walters had begun buying American paintings and drawings as early as 1847, this period of extended travel and residence in the capitols of the Nineteenth Century art world had a formative influence on his taste.
In the autumn of 1863, William Walters, accompanied by his continental agent George Lucas, made a voyage through Germany, stopping at Cologne and Dusseldorf, where they visited the studios of prominent artists. Further trips across the continent to Vienna followed in 1864, 1873 and 1878. On these journeys Walters developed a taste for modern German art, characterized in the mid-Nineteenth Century by clear storytelling, appealing subject matter and precise draftsmanship.
Americans saw in these artists’ works the discipline and technical skill needed to create their own national school. American artists traveled to Germany to study in academies and studios and German artists visited or even emigrated to America in search of new audiences. The Walters continued to buy German art from the Düsseldorf Gallery in New York after their return to the United States.
This exhibition contains a selection of 15 works, most of which were purchased by William Walters during his time in Europe, as well as some exceptional works that were later added to the collection. Admission is free.
The Walters Art Museum is at 600 North Charles Street. For information, 410-547-9000 or www.thewalters.org .
5 Church Hill Road / Newtown, CT 06470
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