Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh





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Top Scene of Presepio



Holiday Celebrations

December 6 (Tree preview party, December 5)


With an 18th-century Italian village and Yul Brynner dancing with his Anna, holidays at the museum should please everybody.  The theme for the five Christmas trees that fill the Hall of Architecture this year is musicals, and includes The King and I, Peter Pan, and a few surprises.  The ornaments are handmade by the Women’s Committee of Carnegie Museum of Art, a project that generally takes about six months.  “Grown-ups and kids will love these, because we’re all familiar with them,” says Myrna Hackney, co-chair along with Vange Beldecos of the tree decorations.


Also in the Hall of Architecture, the Neapolitan Presepio has been an annual  holiday treat since 1957.  Handcrafted between 1700 and 1830, superbly modeled figures recreate the Nativity in an Italian village setting.



Boar’s head tureen with lid, ca. 1760


What’s in Your Tureen:  Soup, Stew or Ragoût?

August 18 through August 11, 2002


Tureens make a grand entrance upon the dinner table, lending importance not only to their contents but also to the guests deemed worthy of an extravagant setting.  Dating to the 17th century, tureens may have derived from large covered dishes used in France, but they quickly became an indispensable part of the formal dinner table setting.  By the end of the 19th  century, fancy tureens began to disappear as dining fashions changed.


This exhibition includes a number of tureens from the 18th to the 20th centuries, and each case contains an appropriate historical recipe, from Russian nettle soup to oyster ragoût.  The tureen shown here dates from about 1700, and was a convenient stand-in for the severed boar’s head traditionally paraded around the banquet hall after a victorious hunt.  Inspired by reality, this tureen, when filled with hot stew, produced billows of steam from the beast’s jowl.  In this way, guests received the full benefit and drama of the hunt, even when the trophy was only rabbit.


La Pereaux En Ragoût (Ragoût of Rabbit)


You can Fricasée rabbits in the same way as chickens or sauté them in a frying pan with a little flour mixed with butter, put them to cook gently with good stock and season them with capers, orange or lemon juice, and a bouquet garni or scallions, then serve.


Le Cuisinier françois

Francois Pierre De La Varenne

French, active ca. 1615 – 1678



Treasure Hunt: Recent Acquisitions of Works on Paper

December 15, 2001-June 2, 2002

Works on Paper Gallery


“We have a large collection of prints, drawings and photographs,” says Linda Batis, associate curator of fine arts, “And only a fraction is on view at any one time.”  This exhibition of works on paper contains treasures such as Old Master prints, 20th-century American drawings and watercolors, works by  Russian avant-garde artists, and prints by such masters of modern printmaking as Pissarro, Gauguin, and Bonnard. “Works in the collection date back to 1450,” Batis says.  “In our collecting, we strive both to complement works the museum already owns and to add works by artists who are as yet unrepresented.”  This exhibition will survey the museum’s acquisitions of graphic arts over the last decade.


New Curator of Contemporary Art Joins the Museum


Laura J. Hoptman joins Carnegie Museum of Art as curator of contemporary art in November, and will begin organizing the 2004 Carnegie International.  Hoptman was most recently assistant curator of the Department of Drawings at The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City, and has served as guest curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago as well as curator of the Bronx Museum of the Arts, New York. Richard Armstrong, The Henry J. Heinz II director of Carnegie Museum of Art, says Hoptman is “among the most capable and globally informed curators of her generation.”


“The opportunity to organize a Carnegie International is one of the great challenges of the curatorial profession,” says Hoptman, “and I am honored and exhilarated to have the chance to do it."





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