Huntsville, Ala – Wrapping up its current fiscal year with a commemorative exhibition of World War I prints, watercolors, and drawings, the Huntsville Museum of Art (HMA) will proudly present Images of the Great War: The European Offensives, 1914-1916, beginning August 8. This will be the second and final stop of the exhibition comprised of 44 original artworks on paper from the Brown University Library in Providence, R.I., which is home to the renowned Anne S. K. Brown Military Collection. The works premiered last year at the Woodrow Wilson House in Washington, D.C. The exhibition will be on display through November 15, 2015.
“The significance of the prints and drawings on exhibit is that they offer an interesting contrast between those produced for the home front, often for commercial purposes, and the images created by the soldiers themselves,” said Curator Peter Harrington. “Viewers of the exhibit will have the opportunity to see examples of both.” Harrington is the curator of the collection at Brown’s John Hay Library.
Created by French, British, Italian, German, Dutch, Austrian, Turkish and Swiss artists, the works will present today’s viewer with multiple perspectives of the war. Scenes of high drama and action set alongside images of pathos and deep sadness capture the contradictions inherent in war: suffering and joy, violence and tenderness, brutalism and humanity. The exhibit will be presented chronologically in three galleries, and HMA’s curatorial staff has supplemented it with original photography, film footage, and poetry from the era.
“The images highlight the ending of one era and the beginning of the modern age,” said David Reyes, HMA’s Curator of Exhibition and Collections. “Gone are the sweeping scenes of Napoleonic splendor on the battlefield—replaced by the somber realism of warfare on a mechanized scale.”
Harrington will speak at the Museum’s Opening Lecture and Reception on Saturday, August 8, at 5:30 p.m. Following his presentation at 6:45 p.m., HMA’s Foundation Board will host a reception with a cash wine bar. The evening is FREE for Museum members and $40 for non-members. The public is encouraged to RSVP by August 6 to 256-535-4350 ext. 208, or they may purchase tickets at www.hsvmuseum.org. Additional programs are planned during the run of the exhibit.
The Anne S. K. Brown Military Collection is the foremost American collection of material devoted to the history and iconography of soldiers and soldiering. It is also one of the world’s largest collections devoted to the study of military and naval uniforms. It contains approximately 20,000 printed books, numerous albums, sketchbooks, scrapbooks and portfolios, and more than 15,000 individual prints, drawings, paintings and watercolors, as well as a collection of 5,000 miniature lead soldiers.
Major local support was provided by Cynthia and Rey Almodovar, Boeing, Yellowbook/hibu, Kathi and Norm Tew, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, Combined Federal Campaign, Fuqua & Partners Architects, Northrop Grumman, and The Keelan Family Foundation.
The Museum’s hours are: Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, 12 to 5 p.m. The Museum is closed to the public on Mondays and some major holidays. Admission is $10 for adult, non-members; $8 for active military, teachers, and seniors (60+); $5 for children age 6 and up and students; and $7 per person for groups of 10 or more. Admission after 5 p.m. on Thursdays is only $5. Museum members and children 5 and under are admitted FREE.