Time and Transformation

Written by Susan Kuretsky, professor of art on the Sarah Gibson Blanding Chair at Vassar College, with contributions by Walter S. Gibson, Catherine Levesque, Erik P. Löffler, Lynn Federle Orr, and Arthur K. Wheelock Jr.; Time and Transformation brings together over ninety Dutch seventeenth-century paintings and works on paper from American collections in a major examination of themes dealing with the transformative effects of time and circumstance. The Dutch were fascinated with this idea and the variety of motifs used to convey it. Included in the exhibition will be images of local landscapes with medieval structures left in ruins in the wake of the Spanish wars, depictions of rustic cottages and farmhouses, Dutch Italianate landscapes with Roman ruins and representations of accidental ruins caused by flood or fire. A smaller selection of non-architectural imagery, such as vanitas still lifes and depictions of ruined trees, will encourage broader thinking on the meanings and associations of images of the fragmentary.

An international team of scholars and curators has been assembled to advise on the exhibition and to contribute to this extensive and scholarly catalogue. Loans to the exhibition will come from such institutions as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Art Institute of Chicago, Detroit Institute of Art, the Pierpont Morgan Library, the Harvard University Art Museums, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Among the artists included are Rembrandt, Jacob van Ruisdael, Jan van Goyen, Abraham Bloemaert, Willem Kalf, Gerard Dou, and Bartholomaus Breenberg.

Time and Transformation is generously supported by grants from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, the Agnes Rindge Ladling Fund, and the Smart Family Foundation, Inc.

299 pages with 256 images (90 color)

Exhibition: April 8–June 19, 2005


  • Hardcover $75.00
  • Softcover $65.00

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