European & American Art

Claude Monet

French, 1840-1926

Le Bassin des Nympheas

1904

Oil paint on canvas

Funds from Helen Dill bequest, 1935.14

Claude Monet

French, 1840-1926

Waterloo Bridge

1903

Oil paint on canvas

Funds from Helen Dill bequest, 1935.15

Camille Pissarro

French, 1830-1903

Autumn, Peupliers, Éragny (Autumn, Poplars, Éragny)

1894

Oil paint on canvas

Funds from Helen Dill bequest, 1935.16

Camille Pissarro

French, 1830-1903

Bords de l’Oise a Pontoise (Banks of the Oise at Pontoise)

1867

Oil paint on canvas

Gift of the Barnett and Annalee Newman Foundation in honor of Annalee G. Newman, 2001.310

Edgar Hilaire Degas

French, 1834-1917

Examen de Danse (Dance Examination)

1880

Pastel on paper

Anonymous Gift, 1941.6

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione

Italian, 1609-1664

Deucalion and Pyrrha

1655

Oil paint on canvas

Funds from T. Edward and Tullah Hanley and Mr. and Mrs. Carl M. Williams by exchange, 1998.39

Attributed to Girolamo da Cremona

Italian, active 1451-1483

The Triumphs of Love, Chastity and Death

About 1460

Oil paint on panel

Gift of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, 1961.169.1

These panels probably belonged on a cassone (marriage chest). The imagery comes from a popular poem by Petrarch (1304–74), in which Love, Chastity, Death, Fame, Time, and Divinity appear in succession, and each one vanquishes the one before. (Divinity, of course, trumps all.) The figures on top of the chariots, the animals that pull them, and even the surrounding landscapes provide clues to each panel’s theme. This particular chest celebrated the marriage between a bride of the Gonzaga family, Mantua’s ruling dynasty (whose crest is on the building in the background of the Chastity panel) and a groom of the powerful Sforza family, Dukes of Milan (whose crest is on the building in the background of Fame).

Attributed to Girolamo da Cremona

Italian, active 1451-1483

The Triumphs of Fame, Time, and Divinity

About 1460

Oil paint on panel

Gift of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, 1961.169.2

These panels probably belonged on a cassone (marriage chest). The imagery comes from a popular poem by Petrarch (1304–74), in which Love, Chastity, Death, Fame, Time, and Divinity appear in succession, and each one vanquishes the one before. (Divinity, of course, trumps all.) The figures on top of the chariots, the animals that pull them, and even the surrounding landscapes provide clues to each panel’s theme. This particular chest celebrated the marriage between a bride of the Gonzaga family, Mantua’s ruling dynasty (whose crest is on the building in the background of the Chastity panel) and a groom of the powerful Sforza family, Dukes of Milan (whose crest is on the building in the background of Fame).

Maria van Oosterwyck

Dutch, 1630-1693

Bouquet of Flowers in a Vase

About 1670s

Oil paint on canvas

Funds by exchange from T. Edward and Tullah Hanley in honor of longtime director, Otto Bach and his wife Cile Bach, 1997.219

Bartolomé Esteban Murillo

Spanish, 1619-1682

Portrait of Don Diego Félix de Esquivel y Aldama

About 1665-60

Oil paint on canvas

Gift of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, 1961.67

Don Diego Félix de Esquivel y Aldama did not live past his thirty-first year of age—he died in 1659, shortly after becoming mayor of Vitoria, his native town. Like his father and brother, he joined the Order of Santiago, whose symbol, an elegant red cross with the lower section in the shape of a sword, appears prominently on his chest, cape, and behind the crest in the upper right corner of the painting. In the Denver full-length portrait, Don Diego is depicted against a neutral background with only a chair to define the interior space. His full-length, frontal standing pose and his attire reveal the formal intent of this portrait, which may have been commissioned upon his acceptance in December 1652 into the Order of Santiago, given the prominence of the emblem, or his election to mayor of Vitoria around 1658–59.

Bartolomé Esteban Murillo was baptized in Seville on January 1, 1618, and spent his entire life in his native city except for a brief sojourn in Madrid in 1658. Although he was only in Madrid for about eight months, from April to December, his stay proved fruitful for his artistic development. His acquaintance with Velázquez and the exposure to the art in royal and private collections, with artworks by master colorists such as Rubens, Titian, and Van Dyck, greatly influenced Murillo and his style.

Giuseppe Arcimboldo

Italian, 1527-1593

Summer

1572

Oil paint on canvas

Funds from Helen Dill bequest, 1961.56

Bartel Beham

German, 1502-1540

Portrait of a Woman

1529

Oil paint on panel

Gift of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, 1961.180

Vittore Carpaccio

Italian, about 1465 - 1525/1526

Portrait of a Lady with a Book

About 1495

Oil paint on panel

Gift of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, 1961.168

The lady holding a book is believed to be the poet Girolama Corsi Ramos. This painting by Vittore Carpaccio inspired her to write a sonnet praising the artist, “who from a piece of wood would make a living thing.”

Girolama Corsi was of Tuscan origin but married a member of the Spanish Ramos family and moved to Venice and Padua. The Denver panel is accepted as one of the few certain portraits by Vittore Carpaccio and is counted among his later production. Active primarily in Venice, the artist left memorable examples of his talent for anecdotal narrative and poetical interpretation in that city, such as the cycle painted for the Scuola di Sant’Orsola, a series of canvases depicting the legend of Saint Ursula, which is now in the Accademia in Venice.

In 2009 the Portrait of a Lady with a Book underwent a surface cleaning, which removed the old varnish that had been responsible for the overall yellowish and subdued tonalities and brought back to life Carpaccio’s color subtleties, a tribute to his Venetian artistic citizenship.

Thomas Cole

American, 1801-1848

Dream of Arcadia

About 1838

Oil paint on canvas

Gift of Mrs. Lindsey Gentry, 1954.71

Winslow Homer

American, 1836-1910

Two Figures by the Sea

1882

Oil paint on canvas

Funds from Helen Dill bequest, 1935.8

Willard Leroy Metcalf

American, 1858-1925

The Ten Cent Breakfast

1887

Oil paint on canvas

Gift of T. Edward and Tullah Hanley Collection, 1974.418

English Artist

The Crucifixion

About 1395

Oil on panel

Promised Gift of the Berger Collection Educational Trust, TL-18011

The Crucifixion was painted about 1395 by an unknown artist believed to have been working in England. Likely made as an altarpiece for a Roman Catholic Church, it is a rare survivor of Henry VIII’s dissolution of monasteries and abbeys that resulted in the loss of nearly all of the more than 30,000 altarpieces that once hung in late-medieval English churches. Jesus is shown nailed to the cross, wearing a crown of thorns. In the foreground at left is the Virgin Mary, her swooning body supported by one of the Holy Women. Behind the Virgin the beardless figure of St. John the Evangelist gazes up at Jesus while reaching out to support Mary. In the foreground at right stands a Roman centurion, depicted as a fashionable fourteenth-century gentleman. The picture was painted in the International Style, so named because of its wide popularity throughout Europe and England in the late Middle Ages. The elegant, refined style was characterized by slender, graceful figures and attention to luxurious materials – fabrics, jewels, and gold.

George Stubbs

English, 1724-1806

A Saddled Bay Hunter

1786

Oil paint on panel

Promised Gift of the Berger Collection Educational Trust, TL-18021

England’s greatest horse painter, George Stubbs first became interested in horses while apprenticing to his father, a leather and hide merchant. Although he began his career as a portraitist in his native Liverpool, Stubbs developed a strong interest in anatomy, both human and equine. He prepared illustrations for a midwifery textbook and, anticipating the major work of his career, dissected and drew dead horses. Settled in London during the 1760s, he published The Anatomy of the Horse. With his knowledge of the horse’s physique he produced startlingly realistic images that soon established him as an animal painter of the first rank. Bay hunters such as the majestic animal portrayed here—with his thick neck, strong body, and short legs—were ideal for traversing rough terrain.

John Singer Sargent

American, 1856-1925

Rosina Ferrara, Head of a Capri Girl

About 1878

Oil paint on cardboard

Gift of the Berger Collection Educational Trust, 2018.21

Known at the height of his career for large-scale portraits of the most fashionable people of the day, John Singer Sargent painted this intimate study of a young woman named Rosina Ferrara, whom he met on the island of Capri, off the coast of Naples, during the summer of 1878, when he was only twenty-two. Rosina was his most frequent model and muse. He was introduced to her by a fellow artist, Frank Hyde, to whom Sargent inscribed a dedication at the lower right of the picture. More a sketch than a finished painting, it combines careful brushwork in the depiction of Rosina’s delicate features with freely drawn outlines describing her back and upper body.

Overview

The department of painting and sculpture oversees the European art collection before 1900 and the American art collection before 1945. Together they include more than 3,000 artworks and are composed of painting, sculpture, and prints.

The department also curates the internationally renowned Berger Collection of mostly British paintings, drawings, and medieval works of art, as well as a significant collection of predominantly French eighteenth- and nineteenth-century drawings on long-term loan to the museum by a private collector.

During the North Building renovation project the European & American Art galleries are closed. Please view select pieces from the Denver Art Museum’s European and American art collection in the cross-departmental exhibition Stampede: Animals in Art.

EXPLORE THE COLLECTION ONLINE:

Browse artworks from the department of painting and sculpture anytime. Check back often for additions and updates.

Highlights

Throughout the years, gifts, bequests, purchases and acquisitions have shaped the European and American collections, from the early donation of Gustave Courbet’s Valley of the Black Pool in 1930 to the recent 2008 purchase of Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer’s The Dolomites.

The collection features significant French nineteenth-century works and important Renaissance and Old Master paintings, including the Samuel H. Kress collection of 37 paintings and sculptures, gifted to the Denver Art Museum in 1961. The collection also benefited from the bequest of Helen Dill, a Denver schoolteacher whose legacy allowed the purchase of several masterpieces, including Claude Monet’s Waterlilies, Camille Pissarro’s Autumn, Poplars, Éragny and Winslow Homer’s Two Figures by the Sea.

Exhibitions at the DAM

  • Treasures of British Art
    Exhibition

    Treasures of British Art

    The Berger Collection
    Opens March 2, 2019

    Treasures of British Art: The Berger Collection showcases more than 60 paintings gifted to the museum by the Berger Collection Educational Trust (BCET) in 2018. The BCET’s gift is the largest gift of European old masters to the DAM since the museum received the Kress Collection in the 1950s. The exhibition will present a chronological selection of works ranging from the 1400s through the late 1800s, telling the story of Britain’s rich cultural history. More

  • Black and white print of Rembrandt van Rijn leaning against a stone half wall, only his torso is in view and he turns slightly towards the viewer. He has a goatee and long curly hair, and wears a puffy shirt and slouchy beret-like hat.
    Exhibition

    Rembrandt

    Painter as Printmaker
    On View through January 6, 2019

    The Denver Art Museum is the sole venue for Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker, showcasing more than 100 prints plus several drawings and paintings from Rembrandt van Rijn’s career spanning from 1625 to 1665. More

Related Events

  • Rembrandt Harmens Van Rijn, The Three Trees, 1643 (detail). Etching, engraving and drypoint; image height: 8.38 x image width:10.98 in. Bibliothèque Nationale de France. Image courtesy of BnF.
    Event: Tours

    Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker Public Tours

    Occurs every day through January 6, 2019. Next Occurs on Saturday, November 17, 2018 - 2:00pm2:45pm.

    Join a 45-minute public tour of Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker, offered daily at 2 pm, September 16–January 6. Included with general admission, reservations not required. More

  • Rembrandt van Rijn, Christ Crucified Between the Two Thieves: 'The Three Crosses
    Event: Lectures & Programs

    Mindful Looking

    Rembrandt's Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves: "The Three Crosses"
    Tuesday, November 20, 2018 - 1:00pm1:45pm.

    Slow down and spend time with one work of art each month. In November, explore two of Rembrandt's masterful prints with a museum educator. More

  • Talk at 12 (Wednesday & Friday)
    Event: Tours

    Talk at 12 (Wednesday & Friday)

    Occurs every Wednesday and Friday. Next Occurs on Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - 12:00pm12:30pm.

    Join a docent for a 30-minute, in-depth look at an aspect of the museum’s collections or something special happening in the galleries. More

  • Drop-In Writing at the Denver Art Museum
    Event: Lectures & Programs

    Drop-In Writing

    Monthly program on the fourth Tuesday of the month
    Occurs on the fourth Tuesday of every month, except December 25, 2018. Next Occurs on Tuesday, November 27, 2018 - 1:00pm3:00pm.

    Explore your creativity through the written word in our informal writing sessions led by Michael Henry, executive director of Lighthouse Writers Workshop. More

  • Two young women seen from the waist up, holding a magnifying sheet up to view prints by Rembrandt van Rijn.
    Event: Access

    Low-Sensory Evening 

    Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker
    Friday, November 30, 2018 - 5:00pm7:00pm.

    For neuro-diverse adults and children who prefer a quiet, sensory-inclusive environment, we offer regular Low-Sensory Events that enable you to visit the museum at your own pace.

    On Friday, November 30, from 5-7 pm, come explore Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker without the crowd, try your hand at printmaking with artist Virginia Diaz in our welcoming Print Studio, and take a break in our sensory break room.

    Visual schedule and sensory tools provided on-site. More

  • Drop-In Drawing
    Event: Lectures & Programs

    Drop-In Drawing

    Monthly program on the second Tuesday of the month
    Occurs on the second Tuesday of every month. Next Occurs on Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - 1:00pm3:00pm.

    Join artist Anna Kaye in our fun and informal creative art sessions. Bring a drawing or sketching project of your own or get started on something new. More

  • Rembrandt van Rijn, Rembrandt with Eyes Wide Open, about 1630. Etching and drypoint; image height: 2.09 x image width: 1.81 in. Bibliothèque nationale de France. Image courtesy of BnF.
    Event: Lectures & Programs

    Rembrandt: An Artist & His World

    Fall/Winter Course 2018
    Saturday, December 15, 2018 - 2:30pm4:00pm.

    This four-session course will explore the life and career of Rembrandt within the context of the 17th-century Dutch Golden Age. More

  • Black and white print of Rembrandt van Rijn leaning against a stone half wall, only his torso is in view and he turns slightly towards the viewer. He has a goatee and long curly hair, and wears a puffy shirt and slouchy beret-like hat.
    Exhibition

    Rembrandt

    Painter as Printmaker
    On View through January 6, 2019

    The Denver Art Museum is the sole venue for Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker, showcasing more than 100 prints plus several drawings and paintings from Rembrandt van Rijn’s career spanning from 1625 to 1665. More

  • A photo of the print studio showing seating area and places to get hands on with printmaking
    Event: Artists & Studios

    Print Studio and Weekend Artist Demonstrations

    Monday, October 1, 2018Sunday, May 5, 2019.

    Channel Rembrandt’s eye for detail to design your own printing plate, or experiment with color and layering in the Print Studio. On weekends, watch artist demonstrations. Fun for all ages! More

  • Treasures of British Art
    Exhibition

    Treasures of British Art

    The Berger Collection
    Opens March 2, 2019

    Treasures of British Art: The Berger Collection showcases more than 60 paintings gifted to the museum by the Berger Collection Educational Trust (BCET) in 2018. The BCET’s gift is the largest gift of European old masters to the DAM since the museum received the Kress Collection in the 1950s. The exhibition will present a chronological selection of works ranging from the 1400s through the late 1800s, telling the story of Britain’s rich cultural history. More

News & Stories

  • Adam and Eve print by Rembrandt
    Blog: Behind the Scenes

    Videos Give Closer Look at Rembrandt Prints

    Watch interviews with curator Timothy Standring and printmaker Virginia Diaz inside the exhibition Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker.

    This exhibition is on view through January 6 and is included with general admission. More

  • Javier Flores printmaking
    Blog: Artist Interview

    Print Studio Demo Artist Javier Flores

    Javier Flores will be in the Print Studio at the Denver Art Museum demonstrating multi-layer, reductive woodcut printmaking November 3-4 and February 2-3. More

  • 3 visitors holding paper horses they made in the Stampede art exhibition
    Blog: Kids & Families

    8 Fun Things for Families to Do at the DAM

    What to See & Do in November

    November is packed with fun things to do at the Denver Art Museum!

    Make a masterpiece (Now-January 6)

    Step into the world of master printmaker Rembrandt van Rijn in the exhibition Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker. Pick up an LCD drawing board and try recreating one of Rembrandt’s famous works, or get creative put a new spin on one of his prints.

    More

  • man's hand carving groove in wood
    Blog: Behind the Scenes

    How We Incorporated Touch & Smell into Rembrandt Exhibition

    Q&A with Designer Matt Gesualdi

    In keeping with the Denver Art Museum's goals of being more intellectually and physically accessible to a wider range of visitors, we worked with local designer Matt Gesualdi to develop a multisensory installed experience in Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker to help explain Rembrandt’s printmaking processes. More

Publications

Recent publications on European and American art that the department has contributed expertise to include:

Department

Current Staff

  • Timothy J. Standring, Gates Family Foundation Curator
  • Angelica Daneo, Curator of Painting & Sculpture
  • Kathleen Stuart, Curator of the Berger Collection
  • Emily Willkom, Curatorial Assistant for Painting & Sculpture
  • Melora McDermott-Lewis, Chief Learning and Engagement Officer
  • Lauren Thompson, Interpretive Specialist
  • Alexander Penn, Research Assistant