The Snite Museum of Art is pleased to announce an extraordinary long-term loan from the Cummins Family Collection of the painting St. Paul the Hermit by Jusepe de Ribera (b. 1588- d. 1656).

Author: Gina Costa



NOTRE DAME, IN. -- The Snite Museum of Art is pleased to announce an extraordinary long-term loan from the Cummins Family Collection of the painting St. Paul the Hermit by Jusepe de Ribera (b. 1588- d. 1656).

On the occasion of announcing the loan, Dr. Joseph Antenucci Becherer, Director of the Museum, said, The significance of this long-term loan to the Museum cannot be overstated.”

Recognized as one of the greatest Baroque masters,  Ribera was born in Jativa, near Valencia, in Spain. He left Spain for Italy as a young man and was active there for most of his career. Known as "lo Spagnoletto" (The Little Spanish One), Ribera lived and worked in Parma, Rome, and Naples. He is recorded as living in Rome by 1612, and is viewed as one of the artists drawn to, and influenced by, Caravaggio and his followers. His extreme version of Caravaggio’s naturalism can be seen in his use of strongly contrasting light and shadows, his brooding figures depicted with raw realism.

Art historian Tomaso Montanari has described the softer and lighter style that emerged following Ribera’s activity in Parma around 1614—a style showing indebtedness to the work of Annibale Carracci and Guido Reni. It is this period around 1615, just before Ribera' s move to Naples, that Montanari dates St. Paul the Hermit. Montanari characterizes the painting as indicative of the artist's style in precisely those years after a sojourn to Emilia-Romagna and before the artist’s departure for Naples where his style became more strictly codified.


According to legend, St. Paul the First Hermit was born in Egypt. During the persecution of Decius (A.D. 250) he left for the desert where he remained a hermit for ninety years. After the saint had lived in solitude for twenty-one years, a raven began to bring him a half loaf of bread each day. The loaf and three dates, nourishment from the desert palm tree, are prominently displayed in the foreground of the painting. The saint grasps an upturned skull with his sunburned hands as he looks up and to the right, his gray beard and the tired skin of his torso indicative of his advanced age. These motifs—the haggard depiction of an elderly bearded ascetic, the remarkably natural portrayal of the skull, and the isolation and devotion of the subject—were to become hallmarks of Ribera's work. Here they are contrasted with a distant, almost romantic landscape of a dark blue sky looming over a rocky promontory.


“Ribera’s half-length portrait of a saint is a stunning example of Counter-Reformation devotional art popular in the seventeenth century, and it richly complements the University’s collection of Italian religious narratives,” said Cheryl Snay, Curator of European Art at the Snite Museum of Art. “Moreover, the artist’s emphatic naturalism and dramatic tension make it as compelling now as it was four centuries ago.”


MEDIA CONTACT: If you would like high-resolution images or in-depth information, please contact Gina Costa, Marketing and Public Relations Manager, (574) 631-4720,


About The Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame

Considered one of the finest university art museums in America, the Snite Museum's permanent collection contains over 25,000 works that represent many cultures and periods of world art history. Exceptional holdings include the Jack and Alfrieda Feddersen Collection of Rembrandt Etchings, the Noah L. and Muriel S. Butkin Collection of 19th-Century French Art, the John D. Reilly Collection of Old Master and 19th-Century Drawings, the Janos Scholz Collection of 19th-Century European Photographs, the Mr. and Mrs. Russell G. Ashbaugh Jr., Collection of Meštrović Sculpture and Drawings, the George Rickey Sculpture Archive, and the Virginia A. Marten Collection of 18th-Century Decorative Arts. Other collection strengths include Olmec and Mesoamerican art, 20th-century art, and Native American art.


Sculpture is displayed in the Mary Loretto and Terrence J. Dillon Courtyard and in The Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park.


Snite Museum of Art                         

The University of Notre Dame

100 Moose Krause Circle

Notre Dame, IN 46556

Phone: (574) 631-5466

Fax: (574) 631-8501




Tuesday–Friday, 10: a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Thursday evening until 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, noon–5:00 p.m.


Closed Sunday, Monday, and major holidays. Admission is free


Caption for image of painting:

Jusepe de Ribera (called “lo Spagnoletto”), Spanish, 1591-1652

St. Paul the Hermit, ca. 1614-1615

Oil on canvas

34 ¾ x 29 inches (87.5 x 73.5 cm)

Image courtesy of the Cummins Family Collection

St. Paul the Hermit by Jusepe Ribera


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New 18th and 19th century acquisitions

Author: Gina Costa


Small Laocoon

 Notre Dame, IN The Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame announces the acquisition of several important works which enrich the Museum’s eighteenth- and nineteenth-century permanent collections. “Our holdings in this period are among the many strengths of the permanent collection of the Museum,” said Joseph Antenucci Becherer, Director of the Snite Museum of Art. “Such carefully selected acquisitions will make a further and lasting contribution, individually and collectively.”

Chief among them is the life-size marble sculpture Laocoön and His Sons that depicts a scene from the Roman poet Virgil's Aeneid (29-19 BCE) in which Laocoön, the Trojan priest of Apollo, and his two sons are killed.


Dated to between 1650 and 1780, the Snite Museum’s version is modeled after the ancient sculpture on view at the Vatican Museums in Italy. The slightly smaller replica was most likely made for a wealthy collector's private home, signaling the owner's superior taste and classical education. 


University of Notre Dame benefactors Michael and Susie McLoughlin donated the sculpture after having lent it to the Snite Museum in 2016. “The Laocoön group is the centerpiece of our eighteenth-century gallery where it draws historical, philosophical, and stylistic connections among many of the other paintings and decorative arts on display there,” said Cheryl Snay, Curator of European Art at the Museum. “Visitors are riveted by the scale, technique, story, and the ideas about virtue, violence, and heroism that the sculpture embodies,” she continued.


The Museum is also pleased to announce a major addition to its celebrated collection of 19th-century photography. Portrait of Ella Monier-Williams was created by the artist and writer the Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, widely known as Lewis Carroll. “Dodgson was perhaps the most prolific amateur English portrait photographer of his day," observes David Acton, Curator of Photography. "Best remembered, however, as Lewis Carroll, author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. He grew up in a large family, which nurtured a penchant for storytelling, and an enduring sympathy for children. Both traits contributed to his skill behind the camera.” In the summer of 1866 he made this portrait of Ella Monier-Williams, an albumen print which suggests the sitter’s awakening love of literature.



Notable among other acquisitions to the Museum’s renowned collection of prints and drawings, Edmond de Goncourt by the artist Félix Bracquemond , is a remarkable example of the etcher’s art, incorporating different techniques, invention, and skillsets. Bracquemond’s subject is Edmond de Goncourt, a prominent writer and trendsetter in the second half of the nineteenth century.


Finally, new to the Museum’s important collection of decorative arts is an exquisite, black-ground coffee pot from the late eighteenth century. Dated to around 1795, it is from a service demonstrating a departure from the more common neoclassical style with reserves depicting regional costumes of the Kingdom of Naples and Sicily. The coffee pot is from the Real Fabbrica Ferdinandea, a porcelain manufactory in Naples, best known for its table settings decorated with neoclassical motifs.


“Félix Bracquemond’s 1882 print, Portrait of Edmond de Goncourt—and the black-ground coffee pot, the first of its kind in the Virginia A. Marten Collection—each represents a technical tour-de-force in their respective areas,” states Cheryl Snay, Curator of European Art at the Museum. “Both works add considerably to our understanding of the tastes, intellectual interests, and entrepreneurial motivations that inspired artists and their clients during the nineteenth century.”


These four important acquisitions will enrich the Museum’s eighteenth- and nineteenth-century permanent collections, among the many strengths of the permanent collection of the Museum. They will play a major role in the new Raclin Murphy Museum of Art scheduled to open late in 2022.



MEDIA CONTACT: If you would like high-resolution images or in-depth information, please contact Gina Costa, Marketing and Public Relations Program  Manager, (574) 631-4720,


The Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame 

Considered one of the finest university art museums in America, the Snite Museum's permanent collection contains over 25,000 works that represent many cultures and periods. Notable are the Museum's holdings in Mesoamerican and Olmec art, African art, European art from 1400 to 1900, Decorative Arts, Prints, Drawings, Photography, the George Rickey Sculpture Archive, and Ivan Meštrović Collection. Sculpture is displayed in the Mary Loretto and Terrence J. Dillon Courtyard, and in The Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park.



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“Looking at the Stars”: Irish Art at the University of Notre Dame

Author: Gina Costa

Irish Show

“Looking at the Stars”: Irish Art at the University of Notre Dame

August 17 – December 14, 2019

Snite Museum of Art



Notre Dame, IN- The Snite Museum of Art presents “Looking at the Stars”: Irish Art at the University of Notre Dame on view beginning August 17. With the recent gift of modern paintings by artists such as Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957), Rodreric O’Conor (1860-1940), and Mary Swanzy (1882-1978), among others, from the Donald and Marilyn Keough Family, the University of Notre Dame has laid a solid foundation on which to build a rich collection of Irish art that will inspire audiences the world over. This is the premier examination of many works from the Keough gift as well as several other significant collections of Irish Art.   Taken together, the collections combine to create a landmark exhibition at the Snite Museum of Art.


The exhibition will also include selected gifts to the Museum of photographs by Alen MacWeeney.  Born in Dublin in 1939, the photographer established a worldwide reputation when he chronicled the native itinerants of Ireland known as the Travellers. The artist’s genre studies in the chapels and pubs of Dublin, and his country landscapes, possess a mood of poetic evocation. Also included in the exhibition are MacWeeney’s photographs of O’Neill House in Southwestern County Kerry.  Approximately fifty-five photographs, ranging in date from 1965 to 2015, will be shown.


Additionally, important collections from the Museum, including a celebrated group of James Barry (1741–1806) prints, and substantial holdings in the Hesburgh Library’s Special Collections, will be featured. These gems and others currently held by the university are cause for celebration and pride with the addition of the Keough and the MacWeeney gifts.


Finally, the Museum is honored to announce the loan of several Modern and Contemporary masterpieces from the renowned collections of Pat and John O’Brien of Chicago.  Such works continue a deeply appreciated relationship with the O’Briens who have made their collections available to the Notre Dame Community and the world.


The history of Irish visual art may be less familiar to visitors than the performing or literary arts, but it is no less compelling. The Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies at Notre Dame is renowned for promoting new lines of inquiry and research; it is a partner with the Snite Museum in this important exhibition endeavor. As partners, the Museum and Institute offer audiences the intractable wit, tenacity, and infinite invention of the Irish spirit through this exhibition. As such, Oscar Wilde’s words in Lady Windermere’s Fan (1892), may apply to Irish artists within the broader art community: “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”    


 "In celebrating the visual arts in Irish culture, the Museum is proud to honor our donors, lenders, and partners in a meaningful and meaning-filled way."  Joseph A. Becherer, Director, the Snite Museum of Art.


“The gift of paintings that is at the centerpiece of this important exhibition is all the more meaningful because it comes from the Keough family, one of the most generous benefactors to the University and to our Institute for Irish Studies.  The paintings are more than an aesthetic contribution to Notre Dame. They are part of an exhibit that helps to build a bridge between Ireland and America—an endeavor that is at the very heart of our Institute.”  Patrick Griffin, Madden-Hennebry Professor of History and Director, Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies


Public Reception: Friday, September 6, 5-7 p.m. This reception is free and open to all.  Details about speakers and events TBALooking At The Stars Pr


Image credit: Mary Swanzy (1882–1978), Young Claudius, 1942, oil on canvas, 20 x 24 inches. Gift of the Donald and Marilyn Keough Foundation, 2019.001.002



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Snite Museum of Art announces gift of photographs from the Brett Weston Archive

Author: Gina Costa



Weston Pr


THE SNITE MUSEUM OF ART, University of Notre Dame, announces the gift of photographs from the Brett Weston Archive.



NOTRE DAME, Ind., May 1, 2019 –The Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame announces the gift of 50 photographs by Brett Weston (American, 1911-1993). This generous donation comes from the Oklahoma City philanthropist Christian Keesee, who founded the Brett Weston Archive after acquiring works from the artist’s estate in 1996. Aside from organizing the photographer’s work, and publishing a catalogue raisonne, the Brett Weston Archive makes this gift to the University to broaden appreciation of Weston, to preserve his work, and to contribute to study of the history of photography.


The Museum and University are honored to receive this important gift,” shares Museum Director Joseph Antenucci Becherer, “It furthers greatly one of the important university collections of photography.”


Brett Weston was the second of four sons of the photographer Edward Weston and Flora Chandler. He left school at age thirteen, move to Mexico with his father, who was already a distinguished photographer.  He observed his father’s dedication to craft when the elder Weston shifted from a Pictorialist style to a sharp, incisive manner that emphasized bold forms and delicate textures.  He displayed a natural talent in his first photographs. “He is doing better at fourteen than I did at thirty,” the father wrote in his journal.  “To have someone close to me, working so excellently, with an assured future, is a happiness hardly expected.” Edward Weston chose a group of his son’s photographs for the landmark Film und Foto exhibition at Stuttgart in 1929, and the seventeen-year-old had his images published in European magazines.  


In the early 1930s, when father and son were partners in studios in San Francisco and Carmel, both made some of their most remarkable photographs at Point Lobos, views of the windswept Pacific coastline, and natural objects collected along the beach.


In May 1930, Brett Weston set out on his own, opening a portrait studio in Glendale, California.  Two years later a solo exhibition of his photographs was mounted in San Francisco at the M. H. De Young Memorial Museum. During the Depression, he was a photographer for the Works Progress Administration, and a supervisor of the photographic section in the Federal Arts Project.  He moved to Santa Barbara, during World War II, to work as a photographer for the Douglas, and North American Aircraft corporations.  Drafted into the Army in 1941, he later photographed in New York, surveying the city from the rooftops, and exploring the New York Botanical Garden.  He was posted to El Paso, Texas in 1945, he explored the White Sands National Monument in a series of photographs that were continued during his Post-Service Guggenheim Fellowship. After the war, he returned to California to assist his father through the struggle with Parkinson’s disease in the final decade of his life.  In 1958, Weston traveled for the first time to Europe, where he made studies of space, form and texture rather than picturesque tourist views.



“Brett Weston was a darkroom virtuoso,” said David Acton, Snite Museum Curator of Photographs. “His deep understanding of the capabilities of film photography produced prints seldom equalled in digital media. So his great prints often provides a revelation to students.”



All of the works in this gift were made by Brett Weston himself, from his own original negatives which range in date from about 1940 to 1985. Many of the photographs in this gift are vintage prints, produced around time of the negative. Others were made later, and meant for exhibition or sale, but they remained in the artist’s possession at the time of his death. Building upon his father’s achievements, Weston made many studies of plant forms, and the reflective or coarse surfaces of water, soil or rock.


Weston observed abstraction in nature with his camera, and accentuated its beauty with the processes of photographic film. These were ideal subjects for the demonstration of the tonal capabilities of the gelatin silver print process. In this era of cellphone camera and digital photography, students are surprised and delighted by the beauty of traditional gelatin silver photographic prints.

Image: Rock Wall, 1975. Vintage gelatin silver print

Brett Weston 2019



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Revisions:Contemporary Native Art

Author: Gina Costa

Revisions: Contemporary Native Art features over twenty regionally and nationally celebrated artist. The exhibition highlights strategies of revision, reuse, and appropriation in Native art from the 1990s to today in media ranging from painting to sculpture to video. On view through May 18, 2019, the exhibition gathers national loans and works from the museum’s collection, and includes a major installation by artist Wendy Red Star (Apsáalooke/Crow). 

Revisions Contmporary Native Art


The participating artists—who hail from diverse tribes in the United States and Canada—share an interest in the circulation and reconfiguration of forms over time, across space, and between cultures. Some reflect on the appropriation of Native culture by settler society while others repurpose found objects, images, and texts from tribal history, family archives, and popular media. The resulting artworks address issues of inheritance, colonization, authenticity, and the politics of representation.


Works by artists from the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi, including beadwork by David Martin, a commissioned black ash basket by Christine Rapp-Morseau, and a collage by Jason Wesaw, demonstrate the tribe’s cultural richness and diversity. Rapp-Morseau’s basket is a new commission for the Snite Museum and marks the first contemporary object by a Pokagon Band artist to enter the collection.


Artists represented in the Snite Museum’s permanent collection include Rick Bartow (Mad River Band Wiyot), Edgar Heap of Birds (Cheyenne and Arapaho), Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (Salish and Kootenai), Kay Walkingstick (Cherokee), and Melanie Yazzie (Diné/Navajo).




0c6a0059 Copy

Image credit: Wendy Red Star, Peelatchiwaaxpáash/Medicine Crow (Raven), 2014. Pigment print on paper, from digitally reproduced and artist manipulated photograph by C.M. (Charles Milton) Bell, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution. ©️ Wendy Red Star; photo: courtesy of the artist.


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Snite Museum of Art Appoints New Director

Author: Gina Costa

Joseph Antenucci Becherer Feature


Joseph Antenucci Becherer, the founding director and curator of the sculpture program at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has been appointed the new director of the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame. HIs term as director will begin in January 2019.

Becherer joined Meijer Gardens in 1999, and became its chief curator and vice president of sculpture and horticulture, collections and exhibitions in 2009. He also is the Lena Meijer Professor in the History of Art at Aquinas College, where he teaches courses in Renaissance, Baroque and Contemporary art.

At Notre Dame, Becherer will lead a staff of 16 responsible for exhibition development and educational programs that serve Notre Dame students and faculty as well as thousands of primary and secondary school students who visit the Snite Museum of Art annually. He also will play a major role in helping design the University’s new Raclin Murphy Museum of Art at Notre Dame.

“We are thrilled to have someone of Joseph’s artistic vision, talents and operational experience joining our team at Notre Dame,” said Maura Ryan, vice president and associate provost for faculty affairs, who oversaw the national search that led to Becherer’s appointment. “We are confident he will continue and enhance the museum’s role in the University’s vibrant arts district that is taking shape on the southern edge of our campus and includes the Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park, which opened in 2017.”

“This directorship is a great honor and opportunity beyond measure as the museum and entire academic community fully embrace the essential role of the arts at the heart of Notre Dame,” Becherer said. “Following in the great tradition that is the Snite Museum of Art, I look forward to working with donors, staff, faculty, students and artists to create in the new Raclin Murphy Museum of Art one of the nation’s pre-eminent and most innovative university art museums.”




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There's No Place Like Time: A Novel You Walk Through

Author: Gina Costa

Theories Of Forgetting 900

There’s No Place Like Time:  A Novel You Walk Through

A Retrospective of Video Artist Alana Olsen


A Multimodal Installation by Lance and Andi Olsen


September 1 – December 1, 2018


Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN

An interplay of videos, texts, objects, and interventions, There's No Place Like Time is a multimodal installation translating the life of Alana Olsen—a fictional character plucked from Lance Olsen’s novel Theories of Forgetting—into three-dimensional reality that will be on view in the Snite Museum of Art from September 1 through December 1.


Andi and Lance Olsen's collaboration takes the form of a retrospective of Alana’s videos, created over a span of forty-some years, the later ones revealing her attempts to incorporate such innovative techniques as erasures, dubbed narrative, and words as images. Alana’s fictional daughter Aila, an art critic and conceptual artist, appears as the exhibition curator; through Aila, we receive biographical information describing Alana’s evolving aesthetics, a context for her development as a video artist, and an exhibition catalogue.

There’s No Place Like Time:  A Novel You Walk Through

A Retrospective of Video Artist Alana Olsen


There Is No Place Like Time



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Solidary & Solitary

Author: Gina Costa


New Norman Lewis Image 1

Solidary and Solitary: The Pamela J Joyner and Alfred J Giuffrida Collection

Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame


August 18, 2018 – December 15, 2018

Notre Dame, IN –The Snite Museum of Art will exhibit a major nationwide touring exhibition beginning Saturday, August 18, 2018 Solidary and Solitary: The Pamela J Joyner and Alfred J Giuffrida Collection. This exhibition offers a new perspective on the critical contribution black artists have made to the evolution of visual art from 1940s through to the present moment. Curated by noted art historians Christopher Bedford and Katy Siegel, this will be the first large-scale public exhibition to bring together a vital lineage of visionary black artists. Commencing in the mid-twentieth century with Abstract Expressionist Norman Lewis, the show will trace a line through some of the most celebrated artists working.

Drawing on the Joyner/Giuffrida collection’s unparalleled holdings, a central theme will be the power of abstract art as a profound political choice, rather than a stylistic preference, for generations of black artists. The exhibition will demonstrate how abstraction has declared individual freedom; a resistance to the imagery of racist mainstream culture on the one hand, and pressures to create positive representations of black Americans on the other.

Ranging across 70 years, Solidary and Solitary will reveal a rich and complex history woven from the threads of artistic debates about how to embody blackness; social struggle and change; migrations and the international African diaspora. Placing a spotlight on individuals’ pursuit of creative freedom in different eras and geographical contexts, highlights will include works by an array of artists that fuse the social and the abstract in visceral ways, including Sam Gilliam, Norman Lewis, and Kevin Beasley, among many others. Placing a spotlight on individuals’ pursuit of creative freedom in different eras and geographical contexts.


Solidary & Solitary: The Joyner / Giuffrida Collection is presented by The Helis Foundation and organized by the Ogden Museum of Southern Art and The Baltimore Museum of Art. 



Solidary And Solitary Release X

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Keough Family Gift of Irish art to Snite Museum of Art

Author: Gina Costa


The Snite Museum of Art announces a gift of 19 modern and contemporary paintings by Irish artists from the Donald and Marilyn Keough family. Combined with earlier acquisitions of 18th-century prints by James Barry and Thomas Frye and photographs by Alen MacWeeney, the gift lays the foundation for a significant collection of Irish art spanning three centuries at the University of Notre Dame.


“This gift of paintings does not only represent an aesthetic contribution to Notre Dame,” said Patrick Griffin director of the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies. “It also helps build a bridge between Ireland and the University. For these reasons, we are thrilled to have these paintings here. It is especially gratifying for me that the gift comes from one of our most generous benefactors, the Keough family.”

Keough Collection Press Release Cskeough Family Giftdocx

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Money Worries January 21-March 25, 2018

Author: Gina Costa

Thinking about money, and money itself, has the power to evoke despair,” wrote Michael Phillips in his 1974 book The Seven Laws of Money. That observation was the starting point for a new exhibition, Money Worries, on view at the Snite Museum of Art January 21 through March 25.


Co-organized by an anthropologist, a professor of French, a curator, a local numismatist, and an emerging technologies librarian, the exhibition includes old master and contemporary paintings, sculptures, prints, photographs, antique and modern currencies from Europe, America, and Africa in addition to interactive games that encourage visitors to reimagine money and their relationship to it.


Money Worries


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Modern Women's Prints, January 14-March 15, 2018

Author: Gina Costa

Modern Women’s Prints includes over thirty works by American female artists drawn from the Snite Museum’s permanent collection. Among the artists represented are Jennifer Bartlett, Deborah Muirhead Dancy, Grace Hartigan, Lee Krasner, Emmi Whitehorse, and Koo Kyung Sook, their work reflecting an array of printmaking techniques and cultural traditions.


Modern Women's Print 2018



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Dimensions of Power

Author: Gina Costa

Dimensions of Power: African Art at the Snite Museum of Art

Fritz and Milly Kaeser Mestrovic Studio Gallery

NOTRE DAME, IN—August 22, 2017


The Snite Museum of Art African art collection will reopen this fall within a larger, more prestigious space on the main floor of the Museum.  The reinstallation will explore themes of power.


In the past, African art was often tied into the way African leaders promoted their agendas. Royalty and rulers used art to project their authority; religious groups promoted their faiths; while the wealthy desired to display their riches. Ordinary Africans also used art to enable them to wield their own forms of power. Since supernatural forces were thought to play a large role in determining events, it was important to own objects that could withstand or shape events that lay beyond ordinary control. Fifty-nine outstanding works from the Snite Museum collection will illustrate these ideas through themes of economic, political, social, and spiritual power in Africa.


Most of these works have never been on public view before. Nearly a third belong to the Owen D. Mort Jr. Collection, with art primarily from Democratic Republic of Congo, where Mort worked for many years. As he said, “My hope is to educate people on Africa. It’s been a great love of mine… Ideally Notre Dame would use the collection for education, to get interest going in Africa.”


The African gallery will feature online interpretive tools to encourage further learning. A highlight will be a digital touch screen with an interactive map of Africa.


The reinstallation is curated by Visiting Curator of African Art Elizabeth Morton.  An exhibition catalogue by Dr. Morton will be available after December 2017.


This exhibition is generously supported by the Lake Family Endowment for the Arts of the Americas, Africa, and Oceania.


Dimensions Of Powerfinal

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Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park

Author: Gina Costa

The Snite Museum of Art will reopen the Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park in fall 2017.


Designed by noted American landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh, this eight-acre site will feature twelve sculptures by important national and international artists.


The title of the inaugural sculpture exhibition is Reclaiming Our Nature

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Rembrandt's Religious Prints

Author: Gina Costa

Rembrandt Redux at the Snite Museum

 Rembrandt’s Religious Prints: The Feddersen Collection at the Snite Museum of Art

On view September 3–November 26, 2017

The Jack and Alfrieda Feddersen Collection of Rembrandt prints will make an encore appearance at the Snite Museum of Art September 3 through November 25. The exhibition of the renowned artist’s prints marks the publication of the first comprehensive catalog of the entire collection and the celebration of the University of Notre Dame’s 175th anniversary.

 All 70 of Rembrandt’s etchings that comprise the Feddersen Collection will be displayed together, examining the sweep of historical, theological, and artistic impulses that informed the creation of the master’s religious and biblical prints.    

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Making Everything Out of Anything Prints, Drawings, and Sculptures by Willie Cole

Author: Gina Costa

Making Everything Out of Anything

Prints, Drawings, and Sculptures by Willie Cole


August 20 to November 26, 2017


This exhibition focuses on American artist Willie Cole and his extraordinarily creative repurposing of everyday objects such as steam irons, ironing boards, hair dryers, bicycle parts, and women’s shoes to create artworks that comment on diverse subjects such as African art, African-American history, cultural identify, consumerism, gender, and sexuality.…

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Three from the Thirties Classic Cars from the Heartland

Author: Gina Costa

Three from the Thirties

Classic Cars from the Heartland

On view through November 20, 2016

The Snite Museum of Art will place on view three luxury automobiles manufactured in the Midwest during the Great Depression.

The three automobiles in this exhibition are Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) approved classics and two have won awards at juried, classic-car competitions.  The 1938 Packard convertible coupe received a frame-off restoration by LaVine Restorations, Inc., Nappanee, Indiana, and took first place in its class in the prestigious August 2016, Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

The three automobiles featured in the exhibition are:


1) 1934 Auburn 1250 V12 Salon Cabriolet

Known as the “James Cagney car,” this automobile was featured in the Warner Brothers movie entitled The Mayor from Hell, starring Cagney.  The Salon was Auburn Automobile Company’s top-of-the-line model and it competed against other luxury brands of its day, including Packard.

2) 1934 Packard 1107 Twelve Convertible Victoria, with custom interior by Raymond Dietrich

This automobile has won awards at America’s three most prestigious classic automobile competitions: Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, St. Johns Concours d’Elegance of America, and Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.

3) 1938 Packard 1607–1139 Twelve Convertible Coupe


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Images of Social Justice from the Segura Arts Studio

Author: Gina Costa

Images of Social Justice from the Segura Arts Studio

Through December 4, 2016

This exhibition of fifty-two prints illustrates the history of Segura Arts Studio’s published works and describes its mission of working with underrepresented artists.  Joseph Segura founded the Segura Publishing Company in 1981, in Tempe, Arizona.  The studio played a role in contemporary printmaking with an initial focus on collaboration with artist-printmakers and on the print process. This was followed by an emphasis on artists whose work has a political message. Segura was drawn to marginalized artists: women, African Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans.


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Seizing Beauty-Photographs by Paulette Tavormina

Author: Gina Costa


through November 27, 2016

Seizing Beauty is the first museum exhibition of works by Paulette Tavormina, a New York creative photographer celebrated for her reinterpretation still life paintings of the Old Masters.  The representation of commonplace objects had its origins in ancient Greek and Roman painting.  But it was in the Low Countries, at the end of the sixteenth century, that still life emerged as a genre and professional specialization. 

To explore aesthetic goals to match her technical skills, Tavormina made an extended visit to Sicily, seeking out her ancestral roots and living relations.  She returned to New York City, and began working at Sotheby’s, the international fine arts auction house.  She photographed works of art for auction catalogues, advertising, and scholarly study. Her work provided an extraordinary opportunity to observe and study European still life painting first hand.  She learned its subtlety, complexity, and life enhancing power.  Soon, in her own apartment studio, Tavormina experimented with photographic images inspired by the Old Masters.  She recreated still-life arrangements inspired by artists such as Garzoni, and Merian, as well as Francesco de Zurbarán, Willem Claesz. Heda, and many others.  Tavormina gathers her subjects, and arranges her compositions, exactly as her forebears.  Her photographs reveal a practical knowledge of composition, color, form and illumination, comparable to their own.  Aside from her fine art work, Tavormina has continued to produce lush images for cookbooks, and historicizing photographs to illustrate such magazines as National Geographic, and The New York Times



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The Portage Path: Returning to Our History

Author: Gina Costa

The Snite Museum of Art commissioned artist Kay Westhues to document some aspect of the local area as part of South Bend’s 150th anniversary.  She selected the St. Joseph River to Kankakee River portage.  This four-to five-mile-walking trail was the only overland segment of an ancient water route between the Great Lakes region and the Gulf of Mexico.  Native Americans first utilized the portage and then French explorers and fur traders used it to travel from Detroit to New Orleans.  While now largely forgotten, the portage was a primary reason why a city grew at the “south bend” of the St. Joseph River.

Artist Kay Westhues describes her project, “as there was no actual trail to photograph, I decided to suggest the idea of a pathway in each of the images.  They were taken in the approximate area of the original route, and I did not try to conceal the human-made changes that have taken place along it.  The St. Joseph River and some of its branches still reflect the pastoral beauty once acclaimed in descriptions of the area by eighteenth-century writers; other tributaries have been channeled underground.  The 500,000-acre Grand Kankakee Marsh was drained in the nineteenth century, turning the Kankakee River into a large drainage ditch; an ethanol plant now makes use of its headwaters”the_portage_path.pdf


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No Cross, No Crown: Prints by James Barry

Author: Gina Costa

The Snite Museum of Art presents an exhibition of 28 monumental prints by James Barry, the eighteenth-century Irish provocateur whose work challenged the British art establishment and questioned the government’s policies. The exhibition No Cross, No Crown: Prints by James Barry will be on view from January 24 through April 17, 2016.

James Barry (1741–1806) was born in Cork, made his artistic debut in Dublin, and was awarded membership in the Royal Academy in London in 1773, although he was later expelled for his belligerence and acrimony. The series of six murals he painted to decorate the Great Room of the Royal Society of Arts in Adelphi from 1777 through 1783 is his claim to fame. Included in the exhibition is a complete set of the prints he made after these grand paintings, once referred to as Britain’s answer to Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling.

Barry’s prints are significant in the history of printmaking and eighteenth-century trans-Atlantic studies for their scale, their technical innovations, and the role they played in the artist’s creative process. These are not mere reproductive prints, but rather charts illustrating Barry’s evolving positions on hot political and artistic issues of the day. Peppering his religious and historical works with portraits of his contemporaries, such as the philosopher Edmund Burke and the politician William Pitt, the ensemble reads like a Who’s Who of British society in the late 1700s.james_barry_prints.pdf


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African-American Voices

Author: Gina Costa

African-American artworks from the permanent collection of the Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame will be on view thorugh March 13

A featured sculpture is Richard Hunt’s Maquette for Wing Generator, 1982/2010, which developed one of Hunt’s major themes—hybridization of the Greco-Roman winged victory motif with mythological bird forms found on African iron staffs. The sculpture is a prototype for a gravesite monument commissioned through the will of Hunt’s deceased friend Hobart Taylor Jr. Taylor achieved victory through a successful private and public life as a civil rights lawyer, as an attorney for the City of Detroit, as a member of President Lyndon Johnson’s staff for the enactment of civil rights legislation, and as a successful corporate lawyer. The winged victory motif also symbolizes the Christian victory of life after death.

An avid collector of African art, Hunt owns iron staffs featuring abstract bird forms. His use of this symbol in Wing Generator acknowledges the traditional meaning associated with the staffs: birds are linked with the mind and with personal destiny. This metaphor is especially significant for Wing Generator because Taylor’s only requirement for the memorial sculpture (communicated through his will) was that it include the phrase “There are no barriers to the mind.”

The exhibition also includes work by Kara Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, and Renee Stout.african_american_voices.pdf

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New to the Collection: Twentieth-Century Photographs

Author: Gina Costa

This exhibition reveals the ongoing activity to build and refine the holdings of the Snite Museum’s permanent collection, meant for enjoyment and instruction of students now and in in the future.  For the art museum the chief objects of interest are creative photographs, made with aesthetic intent.  During the twentieth century, however, photography is so prevalent and central to visual culture, that such distinctions blur. 

This group of objects, acquired by the museum from 2013 to the present day, include portraits, photojournalism, fashion and advertising photography, as well as intention works of fine art.  The images reflect the evolution of artistic styles over the course of the century, and the influences of Pictorialism, Modernism and abstraction, Futurism and Cubism, Regionalism and the American Scene, even Conceptualism and Earth Art can be seen in the images.  Moreover, this group of photographs reveals an unintentional survey of the changing technology of photography, from platinum and silver developed out prints to photogravure.  A range of color photography processes are also represented, some of them now almost extinct, including carbro printing, dye imbibation, and silver dye bleach printings.  These make a fascinating comparison to the contemporary digital inkjet printing techniques. new_to_the_collection_photos.pdf

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In Dialogue: Henry Mosler, Forging the Cross

Author: Gina Costa

In the second of its occasional series of single-work exhibitions, the Snite Museum presents In Dialogue: Henry Mosler, Forging the Cross from January 10 through March 13, 2016. Curators invited scholars from various disciplines to give their insights on this hidden treasure from the Museum’s permanent collection in an effort to showcase the many interpretive possibilities a work of art can offer.

Visitors, too, will have an opportunity to add their voices to the mix by contributing their thoughts in a notebook in the gallery where others can read and share their ideas.“Museum staff are always looking for ways to engage their audiences and to empower visitors,” said Cheryl Snay, Curator of European Art at the Snite Museum. “There is no single, definitive response to a painting or sculpture. This exhibition demonstrates that different people can look at the same thing and arrive at different, but informed, conclusions,” she added.

Contributors include faculty and staff from the University of Notre Dame: Abigail Palko, Associate Director of the Gender Studies Program; Daniel Graff, Director of the Higgins Labor Program at the Center for Social Concerns; and William Purcell, Associate Director of Catholic Social Tradition and Practice.mosler_exh._press_release.pdf

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Rock, Paper...Lithographs From the Permanent Collection

Author: Gina Costa

Snite Museum of Art Features Modern and Contemporary Lithography Rock-Paper . . . Lithographs from the Permanent Collection, Part Ii 

On view through November 22.

This exhibition charts lithography’s continued evolution from 1900 through today. The course of the medium’s development reflects shifts in styles from expressionism, regionalism, abstract expressionism, pop art, and more recently a return to the figure. Lithography’s popularity waxed and waned throughout the twentieth century as new technologies, such as silkscreen and color photography, eclipsed it.


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Over One Hundred Years of Automobile Design

Author: Gina Costa

Visit the Snite Museum of Art to see the difference 100 years made in automobile design as revealed by three automobiles not likely to be found elsewhere. The 1905 Cadillac represents utilitarian, affordable, early automobile design.  The 1933 Packard is a powerful luxury automobile built for an ultra-wealthy customer.   The 2014 Ferrari is a state-of-the-art sports car designed solely for high performance. over_one_hundred_years.pdf

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Transitory Waterscapes

Author: Gina Costa

Landscape Paintings and an Evaporation Pool

By Danae Mattes

August 9 to December 6, 2015

These beautiful landscapes are the artist’s personal “maps” of time spent within nature, formal equivalents to the experience of moving through the landscape.   She combines “materials and methods that are, in themselves, directly extracted from the earth and which interact in ways that are inherent to their physical properties.”  That is, the paintings are created from natural materials (clay, fiber, and pigments), where shapes, patterns, and forms are revealed through natural processes––such as evaporation causing clay to dry and crack, and gravity moving water-based pigments across sloped canvases.


Mattes will also install an evaporation pool within the gallery.  Liquid clay will be poured into a clay basin on the gallery floor.  As the water evaporates from the clay over days and weeks, the various clays used will create distinct cracking and tonal patterns.


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Counter Archives to the Narco City

Author: Gina Costa

Counter-Archives to the Narco-City

August 16 to December 13, 2015


Counter-Archives to the Narco-City is a curatorial project on art and human rights, co-curated by Tatiana Reinoza and Luis Vargas-Santiago, that offers alternative views to the media spectacle of narco-violence in the Americas. Hosted at both the University of Notre Dame’s Snite Museum of Art and the Notre Dame Center for Art & Culture, the first edition of this ongoing project features the work of visual artists Adriana Corral and Alma Leiva and focuses on the counter-archives of two cities: Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, and San Pedro Sula, Honduras. These are two of the deadliest cities in the world, as well as industrial centers and migration points with thriving narco-economies that corrupt their political structures and terrorize everyday life. Rather than repeating spectacular images of violent public crimes, this exhibition aims to give voice to those who live intimately with violence in contemporary Latin America and document everyday forms of resistance against the societal structures that sustain the chaos.


The exhibition will include, Impunidad, Circlo Vicioso, 2015 and the installation, Within the Ashes, 2013, both by Adriana Corral, along with nine photographs by Alma Leiva from her series Celdas (2009–15).


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James Barry Prints arrive in Indiana

Author: Gina Costa

The William and Nancy Pressly Collection of James Barry Prints Arrives in Indiana

The Snite Museum of Art announces the acquisition of a significant portfolio of 28 prints by the quixotic Irish artist James Barry (1741–1806). Rich in symbolism and technically inventive, these new additions to the collection promise to enhance the University of Notre Dame’s position as a leading center for Irish, eighteenth-century, art historical, and trans-Atlantic studies. The artist’s dramatic compositions, grand scale, and heroic subjects offer visitors, connoisseurs, students, and scholars much to contemplate and enjoy.


“This is a first-rate acquisition of one of the most influential artists of the eighteenth-century British Atlantic world. It will be thrilling to see how our students in early American, Irish, and British history interpret such a rich and complex set of materials,” said Patrick Griffin, chair and Madden-Hennebry Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame.


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