An exhibition titled “Passion and Power: German Prints in the Age of Dürer” is on display in the Davison Art Center through March 3. The show opened Feb. 4.
Curated by 13 Wesleyan students as part of their museum studies seminar, the exhibition includes more than 80 prints and rare books from the permanent collection of the Davison Art Center and Wesleyan’s Special Collections and Archives. Pictured, Amanda Larsen ’18 discusses a pamphlet from 1521 written by Martin Luther.
Wesleyan students Flora Donovan ‘16, Rachel Earnhardt ‘17, Julia Goetze, Parker Green ‘16, Lara Hetzel ‘17, Melissa Joskow ‘18, Amanda Larsen ‘18, Daniel Lee ‘16, Sharifa Lookman ‘17, Anna Model ‘16, Page Nelson ‘17, Penny Snyder ‘16, and Madeline Woods ‘16 curated the exhibition as members of ARHA 360-Museum Studies, taught by Clare Rogan, curator of the Davison Art Center and adjunct professor of art history (pictured at far right). Eight of the student curators are pictured.
The exhibit includes 33 prints by Albrecht Dürer (German, 1471-1528), as well as prints by his contemporaries Lucas Cranach the Elder (German, 1472-1553) and the “Little Masters”—Hans Sebald Beham (German, 1500-1550) and Georg Pencz (German, ca. 1500-1550).
During the exhibition opening, student curators led a gallery talk that explored topics such as the fascination with the Apocalypse, printmaking and the rise of the Reformation, the use of prints as propaganda for Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I, and the new interest in scientific observation and the natural world. Pictured, Melissa Joskow ’18 talks about “The Head of Christ Crowned with Thorns.”
Hans Sebald Beham (German, 1500-1550) created this woodcut of “The Head of Christ Crowned with Thorns” in 1520. Beham made about 270 engravings and more than 1,000 woodcuts during his career.
Daniel Lee ’16 spoke about the prints commissioned by Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519).
Penny Snyder ’16 spoke about Albrecht Dürer’s “St. Jerome in his Study,” 1514, one of the “Meisterstiche” or “master engravings.”
One of the themes of “Passion and Power” is the representation of women and allegories of female power depicted in engravings by Ludwig Krug (German, 1490-1532) and Master M.Z. (German, 1477-1525).
Albrecht Dürer’s woodcut “The Four Horsemen,” is a gift from George W. Davison, 1939.
For more information see the gallery’s website. (Photos by Rebecca Goldfarb Terry ’19)