DC -- Freer Gallery of Art -- Exhibit: Sylvan Sounds: Freer, Dewing, and Japan:
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Description of Pictures: Sylvan Sounds: Freer, Dewing, and Japan
May 18, 2013 – January 4, 2015
Museum founder Charles Lang Freer’s taste for Japanese art grew out of his affection for American tonalist paintings. Illuminating this connection, landscapes by American artist Thomas Dewing (1851–1938) are juxtaposed with Japanese works that Freer acquired in the late 1890s, just after his first tour of Asia. On view are such Edo-period works as Moon over a Moor alongside Dewing’s paintings, including The Four Sylvan Sounds. Freer’s idealized notions of “old Japan” paralleled the nostalgic, pastoral aestheticism of Dewing’s atmospheric landscapes. Dewing often acted as Freer’s buying agent at the New York branch of Yamanaka and Company, helping his patron select Japanese prints, hanging scrolls, and screens that both reflected and affected his own artistic production.
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Copyrights: All pictures were taken by amateur photographer Bruce Guthrie (me!) who retains copyright on them. Free for non-commercial use with attribution. See the [Creative Commons] definition of what this means. "Photos (c) Bruce Guthrie" is fine for attribution. (Commercial use folks can of course contact me.) Feel free to use in publications and pages with attribution but you don't have permission to sell the photos themselves. A free copy of any printed publication using any photographs is requested. Descriptive text, if any, is from a mixture of sources, quite frequently from signs at the location or from official web sites; copyrights, if any, are retained by their original owners.
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Specific picture descriptions: Photos above with "i" icons next to the bracketed sequence numbers (e.g. " ") are described as follows:
SIFGSY_130615_001.JPG: Sylvan Sounds: Freer, Dewing, and Japan
“For those who have the power to see beauty, all works of art go together, whatever their period.”
-— Charles Lang Freer
Charles Lang Freer, the founder of this museum, believed fundamental aesthetic connections exist between the art of different cultures and historical epochs. His collection of Asian antiquities and American art of the Aesthetic movement reflects a cosmopolitan ideal based on cross-cultural interchange and formal affinities in color, texture, and mood. When Freer embarked on his first trip to Asia in 1894, he already owned a significant collection of Japanese ceramics and woodblock prints, many of which complemented the landscape paintings by Dwight Tryon and Thomas Dewing that decorated his home in Detroit.
Following his return from Japan the next year, Freer began to expand his collection of Japanese art to include painted screens and hanging scrolls that relate to his preference for the work of Whistler and Dewing. A leading artist of the day, Dewing was known for his subtly toned, enigmatic paintings of women in sparsely appointed interiors or in atmospheric landscapes. He enjoyed a close relationship with Freer, advising the collector on interior decoration, gardening, and acquisitions of Asian art.
Freer acquired many of these works from 1896 to 1900, when he connection with Dewing and Japan was strongest.
SIFGSY_130615_007.JPG: After Sunset, 1892
SIFGSY_130615_023.JPG: Before Sunrise, 1894-95
SIFGSY_130615_035.JPG: Lion Dance of the New Year
SIFGSY_130615_041.JPG: Beauties of the Seven Autumn Grasses
SIFGSY_130615_052.JPG: The Lute. 1904
SIFGSY_130615_061.JPG: Landscape: Three Young Women at the Matsuchiyama
Attributed to Torii Kiyonaga
SIFGSY_130615_072.JPG: Young Woman with a Cage of Fireflies Standing on a Verandah in a Moonlit Garden, ca 1770
SIFGSY_130615_081.JPG: The Four Sylvan Sound, 1896-97
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2013 photos: Equipment this year: I mostly used my Fuji XS-1 camera but, depending on the event, I also used a Nikon D7000 and Nikon D600.
Trips this year:
three Civil War Trust conferences (Memphis, TN, Jackson, MS [to which I added a week to to visit sites in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee], and Richmond, VA), and
my 8th consecutive San Diego Comic-Con trip (including sites in Nevada and California).
Ego Strokes: Aviva Kempner used my photo of her as her author photo in Larry Ruttman's "American Jews & America's Game: Voices of a Growing Legacy in Baseball" book.
Number of photos taken this year: just over 570,000.