January 10, 2015 |
In 1898, the then-relatively unknown black artist Henry Ossawa Tanner exhibited a monumental painting, The Annunciation , in the annual Paris Salon, where it was viewed with enthusiasm by French critics and visiting Philadelphians. The Philadelphia Museum of Art bought the painting in 1899 - its first purchase of work by an African American, and Tanner's first inclusion in the collection of an American museum. More than a century later, The Annunciation has entered the canon of American visual art, and the museum continues to acquire works by African American artists at an ever-increasing pace.
January 18, 2013 |
The Philadelphia Museum of Art and three other U.S. institutions have joined to offer a sweeping survey of historical American art for exhibition in South Korea. Museum officials describe the show, which includes more than 100 works drawn from three centuries of American art making, as the first such major survey in Korea. "Many Koreans are aware of American artists such as Jackson Pollock and Andy Warhol, and familiar with post-1960s American art, but not with the work of artists of earlier periods, such as John Singleton Copley, Thomas Cole, Winslow Homer, and Thomas Eakins," Seung-ik Kim, the National Museum of Korea's lead curator for the exhibition and a specialist in Korean modern art and visual culture, said on Wednesday.
February 12, 2012 |
Henry Ossawa Tanner deserves a kinder fate than to have a major retrospective of his work sandwiched between Zoe-mania and Vincent van Gogh. But how could it be otherwise? Local photographer Zoe Strauss is emphatically "now" and populist, and van Gogh is a modern master and a perpetual crowd-pleaser. Tanner, by contrast, is a less demonstrative artist whose work reflects the conservative values of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Consequently, his art attracts less attention and requires a more measured response.
February 9, 2012 |
Attendance for the opening weekend of "Henry Ossawa Tanner: Modern Spirit" at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts was the highest recorded since the academy started tracking such figures a few years ago, according to a spokeswoman. Officials said 3,239 people visited the Tanner show, the first retrospective here in two decades to cover the painter's career, from the Jan. 27 opening preview through Sunday Jan. 29. Opening-weekend attendance has been tracked only since 2008's Cecilia Beaux exhibition, which drew 2,094 visitors.
January 22, 2012 |
Henry Ossawa Tanner isn't a giant of American art on the order of Thomas Eakins or Winslow Homer, yet he's a significant figure in this country's art history. That might sound contradictory until one considers that more than a century ago Tanner proved to white America that a black painter could measure up to the highest standards of his profession - even if he had to move to France to do so. Tanner was honored in racially tolerant France as he was not, and never could have been, in his native country.
July 1, 2004 |
The Philadelphia School District plans to investigate reports that 24 paintings have been missing from Wilson Middle School for more than three decades, a spokesman said. District officials also will look to talk to representatives of other schools that have a record of missing paintings, including Frankford High School, said district spokesman Fernando Gallard. "If people have information on pieces missing from schools, we would basically request their assistance in finding out about those pieces," Gallard said this week.
June 25, 2004 |
The catalog of art collected in Philadelphia schools equals about four stacked Manhattan phone books. There are oil portraits by Thomas Eakins, a Central High graduate who went on to become a major American artist. One 1905 portrait depicts a Central High principal. There are works by a strong core of African American artists, including Henry Ossawa Tanner and Dox Thrash, and a group of late-19th- and early-20th-century impressionists, including Walter Baum, Walter Elmer Schofield and Edward Redfield.
October 19, 2003 |
Branford Marsalis put it best. When asked to comment on the significance of his late friend Romare Bearden's being the first African American artist to receive a major retrospective at the National Gallery of Art, the jazz saxophonist replied: "I don't need the National Gallery for acceptance [of Bearden], and I'm pretty sure Romare would feel the same way. His work stands alone. This show is more of an affirmation than anything else. " You don't have to be a connoisseur to know that Bearden, who died of cancer in 1988 at age 76, was one of America's preeminent artists long before the National Gallery made him just the eighth modern artist to receive a full-scale show since it opened in 1941.
October 14, 2000 |
Of all African American artists, Henry Ossawa Tanner is probably the best known. His work hangs in the White House as well as the Philadelphia Museum of Art. But paintings by Tanner (1859-1937), who grew up here, studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts under Thomas Eakins, and then emigrated to Paris, do not often come on the market - not major ones, anyway. That is why widespread attention is being paid to Bill Bunch's auction of more than 200 paintings, which begins at 1 p.m. Tuesday at the Concordville Inn. Midway in that sale, Bunch will offer a previously unknown painting by Tanner.