2013-01-23 / Front Page

Queens College Students Curate Exhibition Of Dutch Art

Queens College students curated the exhibition, “Re-Forming the Image in the Dutch Golden Age” at the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, which reveals the beginnings of modern democracy. Queens College students curated the exhibition, “Re-Forming the Image in the Dutch Golden Age” at the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, which reveals the beginnings of modern democracy. As an outgrowth of a seminar on Dutch art, a group of Queens College students have helped their professor curate the new Godwin-Ternbach Museum (GTM) exhibition, “Re-Forming the Image in the Dutch Golden Age”, on view from February 4 through March 23. The works on display include paintings, prints, sculpture and historical artifacts from 16th through 18th century Netherlands, Germany, England, France and colonial New York. They show how art represented new attitudes about man and the natural world and reflected a rise in democracy and the middle classes. Among a host of public programs are two very special free events: a private tour of the Metropolitan Museum’s Dutch art collection and a lecture on Dutch Art collectors in New York City. A tour of Dutch historic homes in Queens, including Flushing’s Bowne House, built circa 1661, will also be offered for a fee.
“Students devised and staged the exhibition, determined its scope, organization and layout, wrote interpretive labels for visitors, and created an online catalogue. This is truly experiential learning,” said Godwin-Ternbach Museum Curator and Director Amy Winter. She added, “Our goal was dual: teaching students about the artistic and social achievements of the northern Renaissance and northern Baroque periods and allowing them to handle and research original works of art.”
“This course and the resulting exhibition expand the educational opportunities we can offer our students. Not only are we relocating the learning environment out of the classroom and into the real world, but the emphasis on museum issues also constitutes practical job training. This will better prepare our students to enter the job market and be immediately competitive,” said Queens College Art History Professor Christopher Atkins, who taught the course and organized the exhibition with the students.
An opening reception is being held on Tuesday, February 5, from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. The public and media are invited to attend. The Godwin-Ternbach Museum is located at Queens College, 65-30 Kissena Blvd., 405 Klapper Hall, Flushing.
In areas impacted by the Protestant Reformation, religious, social and scientific revolutions led to a burgeoning of secular subject matter and naturalistic aesthetics that gave birth to modern art genres. The exhibition examines how artwork provides a glimpse of history and evidence of the values and structure of societies, focusing on Dutch art and culture, well represented in the GTM. The exhibition includes selections from the GTM collection and loans and collaborations with local and city institutions.
Exhibition sections include: Beginnings; Modernity; Impact and Diffusion; Colonial New York (Queens). Themes addressed cover the emergence of capitalism, the market, the individual and the development of taste, looking at newly embraced subjects such as landscape, portraiture, still-life and genre scenes, contrasting these with the religious and dynastic subjects of the pre-modern era. The section on Colonial New York will display 16th through 18th century art, maps and documents from the Queens Historical Society, Historical Architecture Buildings Society, Greater Astoria Historical Society, New York Historical Society, and the Library of Congress, to offer a look at art and life in New Amsterdam, particularly Queens.  
In addition to the private tours, a full series of free, open-to-the-public programs will accompany the exhibition, including lectures, films and a children’s workshop. For further information about the exhibition and a full program listing,   visit http://bit.ly/aLcPmI or call 718-997-4747. Reservations for the Metropolitan Museum and historic houses of Queens tours and the lecture on Dutch Art collectors in New York City may be made by calling 718-997-4724.
Major sponsorship of the exhibition has been generously provided by Flushing Bank. Additional funding was provided by the New York Department of Cultural Affairs, New York Council for the Humanities, The Netherland-America Foundation, Queens College’s Offices of the Provost, Dean of Arts and Humanities, Art Department, and the Friends of the Godwin-Ternbach Museum.


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