press release

The exhibition features 59 celebrated European paintings from the 17th through the mid-20th centuries.

Duncan Phillips (1886–1966) opened The Phillips Collection in his family’s Georgian revival home near Dupont Circle, Washington, D.C., in 1921. Phillips was an early champion of modern art a decade before the founding of the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1929. Phillips’s collecting was motivated by a deeply felt personal experience with art and was informed by a lifetime of committed research and study. He opened his museum to the public with the sole mission of providing, in his words, “a joy-giving, life-enhancing influence, assisting people to see beautifully."

The centerpiece of this exhibition features one of the world's most famous and reproduced French Impressionist paintings, Luncheon of the Boating Party (1880-81) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir (French, 1841-1919). This painting reflects and celebrates modern life and the new social realities of the late 19th century, featuring Renoir's young, attractive friends dallying over lunch at the Restaurant Fournaise on an island at Chatou, outside Paris. They are seen enjoying a beautiful day on the river with food and wine and the company of friends. This masterpiece has traveled outside The Phillips Collection only once in the past 15 years, and it is much larger than most Impressionist paintings, measuring at 4-1/2 x 6 feet.

Masterworks from The Phillips Collection affords the Cleveland Museum of Art an unprecedented opportunity to make a number of compelling comparisons with its own permanent collection. Similar works by Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, 1853-1890), Edgar Degas (French, 1834-1917), Odilon Redon (French, 1840-1916), Georges Braque (French, 1882-1963), and others will hang adjacent to canvases by the same artists from The Phillips Collection. These comparisons offer a unique chance to compare how two institutions collected many of the same artists during the 1920s through the 1950s.


Masterworks from The Phillips Collection

Werke von Georges Braque, Paul Cézanne, Camille Corot, Honoré Daumier, Edgar Degas, Vincent van Gogh, Odilon Redon, Auguste Renoir, u.a.