Thursday, January 05, 2012

Kimbell Art Museum

Yesterday, we went with my mom to the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth. We were specifically there to see a special exhibit, but we also looked through the permanent exhibits.

(All photos are from the Kimbell site)
Alex's favorite piece of art was of Ganesh, an Indian god. Alex has a new friend and I spent some time with her mom a few weeks ago. She was in India during a festival for Ganesh, a festival that Alex & her friend also learned about in school this year. This Hindu festival takes place around August or September and lasts for 10 days. Statues of the god are made, sold, decorated & worshipped. Then, the statues are led in a procession through the streets and "immersed in a river or the sea symbolizing a ritual see-off." (from Wikipedia)

Cherubs vs Putti
In the Great Course lectures I've been watching, the lecture (Kloss) refers to putti. I wasn't sure what the difference between cherub & putti were and we came across both terms at the Kimbell. The image above (a close up of putti from Poussin's Venus & Adonis) called the cute winged babies 'putti'. Well, after doing research at home I came across this terrific blog post at Many Shades of Shabby. Basically, if the painting is religious & the babies are 'innocent', they are cherubs (like the cherubim angels of the Bible). If the painting is secular, usually mythological, and the babies are not innocent looking, they are putti.

The Sacrament of Ordination by Poussin
This painting is one of a series of 7 paintings by Poussin in the mid to late 1630's covering the 7 sacrements. Since I am not Catholic, I had to do a little reading to find out about the 7 sacraments. The Kimbell site actually gives a pretty good explanation:
1. Ordination - the taking of holy orders to become a priest, deacon or bishop - shown here as Christ giving the keys of heaven & earth to Peter.
2. Confirmation
3. The Eucharist (communion)
4. Extreme Unction (the last rites)
5. Marriage
6. Penance (confession) - this painting was destroyed in a fire
7. Baptism - which is in the National Gallery of Art in DC & we hope to see it in March.

The Torment of St Anthony by Michelangelo
This amazing painting was done by Michelangelo and is believed to be his earliest the age of only 12 or 13!!! This is the first Michelangelo to be in an American collection. And, St Anthony is one of the saints I've been reading about lately as I learn about art history. Basically, Saint Anthony became a religious hermit and was said to have been tormented by Satan. Artists have portrayed these temptations and torments with all kinds of scary, make-believe beasts.

Saint Sebastian Tended by Irene attributed to Georges de La Tour
I loved this painting of Irene tending to Saint Sebastian, another saint I've been reading about lately. Saint Sebastian was a Roman soldier under Diocletian. Diocletian ordered him executed by a firing squad of archers after Sebastian had been converting soldiers to Christianity. Irene took care of him and he miraculously lived. Though, after his recovery, he confronted Diocletian who ordered him executed...again. This time, Sebastian died. I love the gentleness of Irene in this painting.

P.S. I loved this post over at Family Ramblings that tells about a lot of the other fun things to do in Fort Worth. I'm going to have to try more of them!

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