More than a century ago, Danish illustrator Kay Nielsen created exquisite interpretations of classic fairy tales that remain some of the most memorable visions of enchantment and fantasy ever to appear in print. The MFA’s recent exhibition Kay Nielsen’s Enchanted Vision: The Kendra and Allan Daniel Collection, featured nearly 50 of his luminous and often haunting watercolors and drawings. The exhibition might be over, but you can still explore these selected highlights in more detail.
This February and throughout 2020, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston will mark its 150th anniversary. Through the decades, countless collectors, donors and gifts have helped shape the collection of today. With the help of MFA historian and archivist Maureen Melton, we’ve highlighted six artworks from three collectors and the backstories of how they came to leave a lasting impression.
Our bestselling print is Rest on the Flight into Egypt, by Luc Olivier Merson, especially during the holiday season. It has been featured on holiday cards and posters and included in several exhibitions. But what is the allure behind this 19th century painting?
Over a century and a half after his death, Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849) is still by far the most popular of all Japanese artists. A major source of inspiration for the Japonisme craze in Europe and America in the late nineteenth century, his work continues to be known and loved around the world today. Explore our recently expanded collection of works by Hokusai and learn why this woodblock printmaker and illustrator is still such an infamous, inspirational part of Japanese Art History.
Between 2400 BCE and 300 CE, Nubian kings and queens controlled vast empires and trade networks, rivalling—and even for a brief time conquering—their more famous neighbors, the Egyptians. The MFA’s exhibition, Ancient Nubia Now, features more than 400 archaeological highlights gathered from its excavations of various Nubian sites between 1910 and 1930. Extensive photography was completed at the time to document the work and historical objects, but now those photos can stand on their own as artwork. As stated in this month’s blog post, selections from an essay by curator Lawrence M. Berman, “Showing the best of these images complete, outside their original strictly documentary context, brings the settings in which they were made to life and reveals the artistry of their makers.”