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Delft Tulip Vase

Flower or Tulip Vase, about 1693, tin-glazed earthenware (Delft), De Griexe A factory (The “Greek A” factory), the Netherlands, operated 1657–1818, Period of Adriaen Kocks, Dutch, active 1689–1694, died 1701; Museum purchase with funds provided by Dr. and Mrs. Frederick Baekeland, Daniel R. Bibb, Earl Buckman, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Blair Cox, Jr., the estate of Professor William J. Dorn, Robert C. and Thomas C. Ford, Robert Kaufman,…

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The Blue and White Pandemic

Curated by Katherine Anne Paul, PhD, The Virginia and William M. Spencer III Curator of Asian Art / Anne Forschler-Tarrasch, PhD, Chief Curator and The Marguerite Jones Harbert and John M. Harbert III Curator of Decorative Arts A different kind of pandemic has been sweeping the world in waves over centuries: our love for blue and white ceramics. First wave: 14th Century West Asia to East Asia Originally from the lands that are present-day Iran,…

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Wedgwood and the Royal Prussian Iron Foundries

Vase, about 1820, attributed to the Royal Prussian Iron Foundry, Berlin, Germany (operated 1804-1874), cast iron. Museum purchase with funds given in memory of Frederick J. Forschler; and provided by the estate of Janus Elizabeth Y. Ellenburg, Mr. and Mrs. Victor H. Hanson II, and Elisabeth C. Brower, by exchange 2017.36 In the 18th century, the Wedgwood world extended beyond English borders. The influence of the pottery established by Josiah…

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The Other Side

Digital Exhibition: Curated by Laura C. Woodard, Librarian, Hanson Library at the Birmingham Museum of Art We don’t typically visit museums to look at the bottoms of objects or the backs of paintings. It’s fair to say that almost no one would recognize the back of a famous work before recognizing the front, the public facing side. But the other side can often give us valuable clues about the provenance of a work of art, where the work has…

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John Flaxman

By Laura Woodard, BMA Clarence B. Hanson Library Librarian Visitors to the Birmingham Museum of Art may not know that the Museum staff, docents, and community members are supported by a robust library collection. Thanks to thoughtful acquisition practices and very generous donations, our Rare Books Room includes objects that would not be out of place sharing space with the works in our galleries. A donation to the BMA library from the late…

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Kabuki Portrait

Memorial Portrait (Ashini-e 死絵) of Famed Kabuki Actor Ichikawa Ebizô V (五代市川海老蔵, 1791-1859) acting with Arashi Koroku V (五代嵐湖六, d. 1858) 1859, Edo Period (1615-1868) Utagawa Kunisada 歌川国貞 Japanese, born 1786-1865 died Birmingham Museum of Art, Gift of Dr. Roy T. Ward, 1995.110 When this print was put on view, the Kabuki actors were not yet identified. Now their history can be told. Written by Dr. Katherine Anne Paul, The Virginia and William M….

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Recent Beaux Arts Krewe Acquisitions

Jan Weenix, Dutch, 1641–1719, Dead Hare, Grouse, King Fisher and Basket of Fruit at the Foot of a Stone Urn in a Garden with a Groom Holding a Basket of Fruit, 1706, oil on canvas; Museum purchase with funds provided by the Beaux Arts Krewe, T.2018.26 Two recent acquisitions are bolstering the collection of European art at the BMA. Both were made possible through funds provided by the Beaux Arts Krewe, which has supported important acquisitions…

Exhibitions

Beyond Tradition

Morino Hiroaki, Japanese, born 1934, Black Rust Flower Vase, about 1985, glazed stoneware; Museum purchase, 1991.785 Ceramic art is an ancient and enduring form of creative expression in Japan. Contemporary Japanese ceramic artists are mindful of this tradition, and their works abound with historical references—the types of clay used, glazes, and techniques. At the same time, many Japanese ceramic artists bend and stretch conventions to create…

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Filling in the Blanks

Pear-Shaped Bottle (Yuhuchun) with Banana-Leaf, Lotus Pond, and Lotus Petal Motifs About 1300, Yuan dynasty (1279–1363), porcelain with underglaze blue decoration, Unidentified artist, China, Gift of Bartlett G. Bretz and Olive Bretz Crawford in memory of their mother, Eunice Grippin Saunders Bretz, 1997.99 Pear-Shaped Bottle (Yuhuchun) This bottle is porcelain and was made about 700 years ago in China. It has banana-leaf, lotus pond and lotus…

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Screen Time

Curated by the Hugh Kaul Curator of Contemporary Art Hallie Ringle Screen Time is a selection of works by artists influenced by screens, big and small. From cell phones to movies, these artists create work about, including, and sometimes, on screens. Some artists work with video as a medium while others turn to painting or photography to reference the influence of movies, television, and technology in their work. Full Screen Both of these works…