The Armand Hammer collection of art, housed at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles (10899 Wilshire Blvd.; free admission), forms the outstanding exhibition of “46 paintings and works on paper” currently on view at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Rembrandt to Van Gogh: Masterpiece’s from the Armand Hammer Collection will be on display through January 21, 2024 at the MFAH.
Even though it takes up half the upper floor at the Law Building, one of three structures that form the MFAH, the experience demands as much time as if the entire floor was occupied. In other words, the Stendhal syndrome takes effect.
As an observer you’re overcome with the sensations of so much fine art in one setting. The tendency at most art exhibits is to walk by and observe and move along. Here you just want to dwell on a brush stoke or the eyes of the artist directed through the eyes of the subject.
This is nothing less than a greatest hits of artists who are household names. Rembrandt, Titian, Toulouse-Lautrec, Van Gogh, are just a few recognizable artists. There are several works that are equal to the masters but the creator’s names are resigned to cognoscenti.
There are three Van Gogh’s by the way. That’s a whole lot of brush shaking going on.
A series of sculptures by Honoré Daumier are indicative of forgotten art, in this case satiric reproductions of pubic figures in the 19th century France that are long forgotten. This single gallery celebrates artists like Daumier, Corot, and Moreau, the latter with their landscapes and mythic depictions.
The 19th century Barbizon School hangs nest to Impressionism and Post-Impressionism. There’s also American Gothic when you consider contributions from Gilbert Stuart and Thomas Eakins.
A series of lectures are scheduled during the exhibition run: https://www.mfah.org/exhibitions/rembrandt-van-gogh-masterpieces-hammer-collection