Seven Hundred Years of Western Art

Nord and Willard-Newell
Through June 2, 2002

Benjamin West (American, 1738-1820) - Jacob Blessing Ephraim and Manasseh (detail)

The Allen Memorial Art Museum's reputation as one of the finest college and university art museums in the country is based largely on its renowned collection of Western art from the thirteenth through the nineteenth centuries. Over the past several decades, a succession of generous gifts and astute acquisitions have combined to form a collection that inspires the visitor with its discreet intelligence and endlessly varied beauty.

Reinstallation of works from our collection include familiar paintings such as Hendrick ter Brugghen's Saint Sebastian Tended by Irene, (1625) as well as paintings that have not been on view in recent years, like Benjamin West's Jacob Blessing Ephraim and Manasseh. Also in Willard Newell are two works by 19th century African American artists. Edmonia Lewis's (1845-?1911) striking sculpture, "Death of Cleopatra," is on loan from the Smithsonian American Art Museum through 2003. "River Landscape," a beautiful 1870 painting by Robert Scott Duncanson (1821-1872), has been loaned to the Allen Memorial Art Museum from a private collection, and will be on view until May.

Because the richness and depth of the Oberlin collection far surpasses available gallery space, it is not possible to display the entire collection at any one time. Works are rotated periodically to enable us to bring a wider variety of art to the public eye, and to explore different thematic or stylistic groupings and juxtapositions within the collection. We invite you to discover the collection anew!