Denver Art Museum Exhibit: "Cities of Splendor" Explores Italian Renaissance
The Denver Art Museum exhibit “Cities of Splendor: A Journey Through Renaissance Italy” was designed specifically to whisk art lovers back to the late 15th and early 16th centuries. With more than 50 works, plus background music and display treatments, the entire Denver Art Museum exhibit is created to be more experience than exhibition.
Works in "Cities of Splendor" range from rich tapestry fabrics to intricate oil paintings and tempera treatments representing Florence, Siena, Mantua, Venice and Milan. Regional comparisons and contrasts are highlighted, and great pains have been taken to show the context in which each piece was created. When a single panel originally was part of a triptych, two panel spaces are noted alongside it. Midway through the display, a small rest area with tables and reading material mimics an Italian outdoor piazza.
“The exhibition will show how local styles merged with the innovative ideas coming from Tuscany, resulting in unique artistic expressions and lasting examples of Renaissance art,” says Angelica Daneo, associate curator of painting and sculpture at the DAM.
Complementary artwork from Northern Europe “across the Alps” shows the influence of the Italian Renaissance throughout the continent. Don’t miss the supplementary panel that depicts details of the meticulous cleaning and restoration that revitalized centuries-old artwork.
Most items are from the DAM’s permanent collection donated by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, as well as others on loan from select institutions and private owners. The DAM calls “Cities of Splendor” a celebration of 50 years since the arrival of the Kress Collection's 33 paintings and four sculptures to the museum. Kress is known for collecting artworks representative of various schools, regardless of the artists' fame at the time. This approach has resulted in a varied, comprehensive collection that conveys the development of European art through centuries.
Accompanying exhibit activities include music on May 13 with the Boulder Renaissance Project, as well as an art-and-perfume program with a local fragrance expert on May 20. A four-part “armchair traveler” series runs April 16 to May 7.
Guided tours of the exhibition are highly recommended to help visitors discover subtle concepts and display details. The 45-minute tour takes place on weekdays at 2 p.m. and weekends at 3 p.m., with an additional Friday tour at 6 p.m. from May 6 to July 29. Tours are free with museum admission and no reservations are required. For a complete activity list and to register, call 720-865-5000, or go to the Denver Art Museum website.
HelloDenver Tip: “Cities of Splendor” might best be suited for older children, so if you've got young kids in tow, be sure to ask about for an accompanying activity card designed to keep youngsters engaged while visiting the display.
Posted on April 21, 2011 by Lisa Perry