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MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

Immersive Stillness

  • Mark Rothko: Reflection

    Slide Notes

    Mark Rothko, Untitled, 1955. Oil on canvas. National Gallery of Art, Washington, Collection of Mrs. Paul Mellon, in Honor of the 50th Anniversary of the National Gallery of Art. © 1998 Kate Rothko Prizel & Christopher Rothko/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

    "An immersive display of 11 masterpieces by Mark Rothko (1903–1970), on loan from the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, invites visitors to contemplate the power of art to shape human experience. The installation opens with Rothko’s early painting Thru the Window (1938), on public view in the US for the first time, and Artist in his Studio (about 1628) by Rembrandt—portraits of artists reflecting on the act of painting. Contrary to notions that Rothko’s work represented a dramatic break from past traditions, the side-by-side comparison positions him within the broader history of Western art. The exhibition’s other Rothko paintings showcase the full sweep of his career—from early surrealist work to multiform compositions to classic color field paintings—and trace his exploration of the expressive potential of color. Enveloped by the large-scale paintings in an intimate setting, viewers can experience Rothko’s work as the artist had originally intended." - mfa.org

    https://www.mfa.org/exhibitions/mark-rothko-reflection

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  • Seeking Stillness

    Slide Notes

     

    Edward Weston, Dunes, Oceano, 1936. Photograph, gelatin silver print. The Lane Collection.

     

    "A series of installations in the Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art leads visitors on a journey of introspection, focusing on themes such as spaces of contemplation; the artistic process as a form of meditation; and nature as a site for clearing the mind. Spanning three galleries, “Seeking Stillness” places together works by a broad range of modern and contemporary artists—including Edward Weston, Agnes Martin, Park Seo Bo, Martin Puryear, G. R. Santosh, Shellburne Thurber, and Zhan Wang. Highlights from the Museum’s historic holdings, including the Italian Mannerist masterpiece The Dead Christ with Angels (about 1524–27) by Rosso Fiorentino and Chinese paintings and scholar’s rocks, are dramatically displayed alongside the modern and contemporary works, offering surprise encounters." -mfa.org

    https://www.mfa.org/exhibitions/seeking-stillness

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  • Buddhist Temple

    Slide Notes

    "Designed in 1909, the Buddhist Temple Room evokes the dignified simplicity of Japanese temples. Japanese and American craftsmen consulted plans of the main hall at the eighth-century monastic complex of Hōryū-ji, one of the oldest extant in Japan, and collaborated on the adaptation of some of its architectural elements for the Temple Room and nearby galleries. Massive wooden pillars with Japanese-style brackets now frame the walls in the Temple Room, where the décor and subdued lighting encourage contemplative viewing of the seven Japanese statues housed there.

    The focal point is the monumental Dainichi, Buddha of Infinite Illumination (1149), the supreme deity of the Esoteric Buddhist pantheon. His hand is in the “wisdom-fist” gesture symbolizing divine knowledge. To his left is another Dainichi Buddha from the 12th century, and to his right is Amida, Buddha of Infinite Light (12th century). Also on view in the Temple Room are two of Four Guardian Kings (9th century), Fudō the Immovable One (12th century) and Bishamonten, Guardian of the North (11th–12th century). All are made of wood, either cypress or camphor, and some are painted or have gilt accents." - mfa.org

    https://www.mfa.org/collections/featured-galleries/japanese-buddhist-temple-room

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