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19th-century Academic Realism from
the Dahesh Museum of Art
January 14–April 1, 2012
In the 19th century, the great academies of Europe represented a continuation of the grand tradition of European classical art. By emphasizing idealized forms, perfect detail, and noble subjects inspired by history, these official art schools stressed rigorous technical training. Having fully mastered the craft of painting, these artists chose subjects that were often epic, drawing upon the highest ideals of Western civilization, and exotic, providing a glimpse of distant lands such as Africa and the Middle East. This exhibition is drawn from the holdings of the Dahesh Museum of Art, the only institution in the United States dedicated exclusively to 19th-century European academic art, and includes works by such luminary talents as William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Jules Breton, Jean-Léon Gérôme, and Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, among other masters.
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