EVANSTON, IL.- Drawings by Michelangelo and other 16th century masters not previously seen in the United States are coming to the Chicago area this winter in two major exhibitions at Northwestern Universitys Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art.
From Michelangelo to Annibale Carracci: A Century of Italian Drawings from the Prado, in the Main Gallery Jan. 23 to April 5, focuses on the period from roughly 1520 to 1620, when artists achieved exceptional technical proficiency in figure composition and drawing was used extensively in preparation for multiple types of art, including frescos, prints, tapestries and stained glass. The exhibition features seventy drawings, including two works recently revealed to be figure studies for the Sistine Chapels Last Judgment by Michelangelo. From Michelangelo to Annibale Carracci marks the first time that many of these works have traveled outside the walls of Spains prestigious Prado Museum since they were acquired by the institution in 1931. The exhibition is organized and circulated by Art Services International, Alexandria, Virginia, in association with The Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. To see examples of works from the exhibition, visit http://www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu/exhibitions/current/prado.html.
The Block Museum is organizing and co-presenting a number of programs to complement its winter exhibitions. Unless noted, the following programs take place at the Block Museum and are offered free of charge.
The Block and Northwestern Universitys ARTica Studios present Principles of Drawing, a class taught by artist Lauren Redding, Wednesdays from 6 to 8 p.m. from Jan. 28 to March 4. The course will meet at ARTica Studios in the Norris University Center, 1999 Campus Drive and will include visits to the Block Museum to view From Michelangelo to Annibale Carracci: A Century of Italian Drawings from the Prado. The cost is $107 for the general public, or $97 for Block Museum members, and Northwestern faculty, staff, and students; all materials included. Reservations required; call 847.467.7112 or visit
At 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 5, Suzanne McCullagh, Anne Vogt Fuller and Marion Titus Searl Curator of Earlier Prints and Drawings at the Art Institute of Chicago, presents Connoisseurship and Scholarship in Italian Drawings: Two Cogent Collections Compared, a discussion of the exhibitions From Michelangelo to Annibale Carracci: A Century of Italian Drawings from the Prado and Drawn to Drawings: The Goldman Collection (at the Art Institute through January 18, 2009). McCullagh will speak about the extraordinary collections these exhibitions come from and the scholarship of independent curator Nicholas Turner in cataloguing the holdings and selecting works from them for exhibition.
From 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 22, families are invited to Drawing Triptychs. Recommended for children ages 8 to 12 and their parents, grandparents, or caretakers, the program includes a close look at selected drawings from the exhibition From Michelangelo to Annibale Carracci: A Century of Italian Drawings from the Prado followed by a studio workshop focusing on three different drawing techniques. Cost is $5 per family of four (free for Block Museum members). Reservations required; email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Block Museum senior curator Debora Wood leads a gallery talk of the exhibition Polaroids: Mapplethorpe at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 26.
The panel discussion Robert Mapplethorpe: Artist and Activist from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 7, explores the artists influence on contemporary photography, activism, and discourse on issues of the body and sexuality. Participants include Sylvia Wolf, director of the Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington, and curator of the exhibition Polaroids: Mapplethorpe; Marisa Cardinale, former collections consultant for the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation; Jeffrey McCune Jr., assistant professor of American studies and womens studies, University of Maryland; and photographer Catherine Opie. Lane Relyea, assistant professor of art theory and practice, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, Northwestern, will moderate. A reception will follow the panel discussion. This event is supported by the Gender Studies Program, Northwestern, and is part of Three American Photographers: In Depth, a series of educational programs at the Block generously sponsored by the Terra Foundation for American Art and the Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities, Northwestern University.
On Thursday, March 12, at 5 p.m., David Rosand, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History, Columbia University, presents Things Never Seen: Graphic Fantasy and the Dreaming Draftsman. This program is part of the Elizabeth and Todd Warnock Lecture series organized by the Department of Art History, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, Northwestern University. Rosand also takes part with other scholars in a panel discussion on Renaissance drawing from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, March 13. Free guided tours of the Blocks winter exhibitions take place Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. from January 24 to April 5, 2009. To organize group and school tours, contact email@example.com.
The Block Museum is located on the southern end of Northwestern Universitys Evanston campus, at 40 Arts Circle Drive, 60208. Admission to the exhibitions is free. The museum is open Tuesdays 10 am to 5 pm; Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays 10 am to 8 pm; and Saturdays and Sundays noon to 5 p.m. (Please note that the Museums galleries are closed through January 12, 2009). Free parking is available in designated lots on the Northwestern University campus weekdays (Mondays through Fridays) after 4 p.m. and all day on weekends (Saturdays and Sundays). Parking passes are required at all other times and can be purchased for $7 at the Block Museum or at the University Parking Office at 1819 Hinman Avenue. Permits should be obtained before parking your vehicle. For more information and directions, phone 847.491.4000 or visit the Block Museum website at www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu.
Additional support for the Block Museums winter exhibitions and programs is provided by the Alsdorf Endowment; Alumnae of Northwestern University; Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation; Embassy of Spain in Washington, D.C.; Illinois Arts Council, a state agency; Istituto Italiano di Cultura; and Myers Foundations.