“The miniature is the highest and final expression of art and beauty. It is the jewel in the crown of art; a crystallization of all delicacy, rarity and perfection of color and draftsmanship.” Baldwin
Imagine our excitement and amazement as we pulled up to the beautiful and prestigious R.W. Norton Art Gallery last Friday and viewed for the first time the museum in its entirety with a very large banner on the front displaying two of our miniatures and our names!! Wow, is all we could say for several minutes after seeing this and then walking into the gorgeous museum and being greeted by several friendly docents and a police officer that all recognized us straight away. It was definitely a magical moment for us both as we walked in and saw “our” room displaying four lovely brass and glass tables in which our 50 miniature paintings were being elegantly displayed.
The magic seemed to continue as we enjoyed walking through and seeing as much of the remaining collections that the museum had on display at that time. Unfortunately we didn’t get to see everything entirely but greatly enjoyed what the limited time permitted us to see. We felt we were certainly in good company with the adjacent room being devoted to the sculpture of Auguste Rodin, two of which were “The Thinker” and “The Kiss”! There were also several beautiful paintings by Frederic Remington, Albert Bierstadt and Charles Russell, to name a few. Each new room afforded more breathtaking pieces of art as we ventured through the museum.
Wes’ presentation was well attended and everyone seemed to enjoy very much what they were learning about the history of miniatures. The lecture room was lovely with the stunning backdrop being several tapestries dating from the 16th century which once graced the palace of King Francois I of France. After the presentation, we continued to our room with a gallery walk and time of answering many questions and signing books. The time passed all too quickly and before we knew it, it was all over. Before leaving we were graciously given a behind the scenes tour by Jennifer. She showed us the beautiful new library that is still a work in progress, and the working areas of the museum. The highlight was a chance to be able to view really close a “Book of Hours” in their wonderful collection. The grounds of the museum were as stunning as the inside, as it features 40 acres of the most beautiful, well maintained rolling gardens imaginable! I’ll share some photos from it next week.
Sunday morning we headed to Port Allen, LA to the beautiful West Baton Rouge Museum for our “World of Nature in Miniature” exhibition. We arrived early enough for Wes and Dave to set up for their presentations during which time I was able to view some of the interesting things on display and read about the history of the area, while also photographing a plantation and a couple of great, historic barns on the grounds. The presentation was well attended and afterward we were treated to some delicious treats to eat before continuing on with the gallery walk and question session. The crowd was very interested and the questions actually had to be cut short by the director as we ran out of time. The venue was lovely, and with a center table displaying a variety of magnifying glasses, it inspired everyone to get a closer look. The West Baton Rouge Museum has had, and will be having, several more wonderful childrens’ art and nature programs pertaining to our miniatures in the next couple of months, so if you’re in the area please check them out.
Well, amazingly it’s already been one week today since our début at the R.W. Norton . . . time goes by so very quickly. We can hardly believe that it has already come and gone, but alas it was a most amazing time and experience, as we made history with our concurrent solo exhibitions containing a total of 100 of our miniature paintings. We feel so very blessed to have been given this opportunity through our curator and tour director, Dr. David J. Wagner, and the two wonderful museums! So we’re sending a GREAT BIG thank you to all those who worked with these shows, including all of our wonderful collectors that graciously allowed us to borrow pieces to share with the public!
Next week I’ll be sharing some highlights from the rest of our trip and several personal photos.
Until next time ~ Rachelle 🙂