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Frist Center One of Three Venues, Worldwide, for
The Birth of Impressionism: Masterpieces
from the Musée d’Orsay

2010 Schedule also Features Dale Chihuly, Golden Age of Couture, Masterpieces of European Painting

NASHVILLE, TENN – (Aug. 4, 2009) – The Frist Center for the Visual Arts has planned its most ambitious exhibition schedule yet for 2010, with an entire year filled with magnificent art from acclaimed institutions from the U.S. and abroad, expected to draw crowds from around the region and beyond.

In a year of spectacular exhibitions, The Birth of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, from the home of the world’s finest collection of Impressionist paintings, is expected to be the highlight. The Frist Center will be one of only three venues worldwide to host this singular exhibition. The exhibition will open at San Francisco’s de Young Museum in the summer of 2010 before opening at the Frist Center on October 15, 2010. The show will be seen in Madrid in the spring of 2010 prior to traveling to the U.S.

In addition to Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay, the Frist Center will welcome The Golden Age of Couture: Paris and London, 1947–1957 from the Victoria and Albert Museum in London; a site-specific installation designed for the Frist Center’s Upper-Level Galleries by acclaimed glass artist Dale Chihuly; Masterpieces of European Painting from Museo de Arte de Ponce, a significant collection of Old Master paintings in Puerto Rico; and Heroes: Mortals and Myths in Ancient Greece from the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore.

“Undoubtedly, 2010 will be a benchmark year for the Frist Center and for Middle Tennessee,” says Frist Center Executive Director Susan H. Edwards, Ph.D. “It really is a magnificent lineup of exhibitions. Our visitors will have the chance to see here in Middle Tennessee some of the most important art of western civilization. From works that date from the very cradle of our culture, to a show on fashion that broke all records at the Victoria and Albert Museum, to many of the very works that gave birth to the Impressionist movement. 2010 will be a spectacular year for art lovers throughout the region.

“The works coming to Nashville from the Musée d’Orsay are among the most important produced by early masters of modern art, such as Manet, Monet, Degas, and so many others. This art is, literally, being taken from the walls of one of the world’s greatest museums.

“This entire year presents Middle Tennesseans and visitors from beyond the region with many exciting opportunities to see some of the greatest art in the history of the world— art in an array of mediums from all time periods and from some of the world’s greatest institutions.”

The Frist Center’s schedule of major exhibitions for 2010 in order of opening date:

January 29 – April 25, 2010
Heroes: Mortals and Myths in Ancient Greece

Organized by the Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, with loans from museums in the United States and Europe, this exhibition of approximately 100 objects defines various types of ancient Greek heroes between the sixth and first centuries BCE. This exhibition explores aspects of both mythological heroes, among them Herakles, Achilles, and Odysseus, and mortal heroes, including warriors, athletes, and rulers.

February 19 – May 16, 2010
Masterpieces of European Painting from Museo de Arte de Ponce

This exhibition is composed of 60 paintings from a great but largely unsung collection in Ponce, Puerto Rico, begun in 1950 by the philanthropist and governor Luis Ferré. The museum is a premier institution for Baroque and Victorian painting. Ranging in date from the 14th to the early 20th century, iconic works by Francisco de Zurbarán, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck, Bernardo Strozzi, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and Edward Coley Burne-Jones are included in this dazzling assemblage. Organized by Museo de Arte de Ponce, Puerto Rico.

May 9, 2010 – January 2, 2011
Chihuly at the Frist

The most acclaimed glass artist of our time, Seattle-based artist Dale Chihuly is beloved for his abstract evocations of sea life, flowers, and other graceful subjects. This site-specific exhibition will present selections from a variety of renowned series, among them Seaforms, Millefiori, Macchia, Ikebana, and Persians. The Frist Center exhibition will be presented in conjunction with a major outdoor installation of Chihuly’s work at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art and a theater design for the Nashville Symphony’s Bluebeard.

June 18 – September 12, 2010
The Golden Age of Couture: Paris and London, 1947-1957

The launch of Christian Dior’s “New Look” in 1947 marked the beginning of a momentous decade in fashion history, which Dior himself called a “golden age.” The couture houses of Paris and London, which had traditionally served wealthy private clients, opened boutiques and licensed their designs, thereby becoming global brands and household names. Through clothing (primarily evening dresses and suits), shoes, and photographs, this exhibition demonstrates how designers such as Dior, Balenciaga, and Chanel brought glamour back to Europe after World War II. Exhibition organized by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

October 15, 2010 – January 23, 2011
The Birth of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay

The exhibition includes approximately 100 masterpieces of mid-to-late 19th-century French painting from the Musée d’Orsay, a museum in Paris dedicated to the art of the early modern period (1840s through the early 20th century). The exhibition provides a broad context for understanding the roots of Modernism by combining seminal works by innovators such as Courbet, Manet, Cézanne, Monet, and Renoir; Salon painters such as Bouguereau; and artists who moved easily between convention and innovation such as Degas, Fantin-Latour, and Whistler.

While the Musée d’Orsay continues to add works to the exhibition and the checklist has yet to be finalized, among the magnificent paintings already confirmed is James Whistler’s Arrangement in Grey and Black, Number 1, popularly known as Whistler’s Mother. The exhibition will also include works by Eduard Manet, including Le fifre and his portraits of Émile Zola, Georges Clemenceau, and Berthe Morisot. There are 11 works by Renoir, including his portrait of Claude Monet, and seven works by Degas, including Repetition d’un ballet.

About the Frist Center
Accredited by the American Association of Museums, the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, located at 919 Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tenn., is an art exhibition center dedicated to presenting the finest visual art from local, regional, U.S. and international sources in a program of changing exhibitions. The Frist Center’s Martin ArtQuest Gallery features more than 30 interactive stations relating to Frist Center exhibitions. Gallery admission to the Frist Center is free for visitors 18 and younger and to Frist Center members. Starting Jan. 2, 2010, Frist Center admission is $10.00 for adults and $7.00 for seniors, military and college students with ID. College students are admitted free Thursday and Friday evenings, 5–9 p.m. Discounts are offered for groups of 10 or more with advance reservation by calling (615) 744-3247.The Frist Center is open seven days a week: Mondays through Wednesdays, and Saturdays, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Thursdays and Fridays, 10 a.m.–9 p.m. and Sundays, 1–5:30 p.m., with the Frist Center Café opening at noon. Additional information is available by calling (615) 244-3340 or by visiting our Web site at

Please consider supporting the Frist Art Museum with a donation. Your gift is essential to our mission of serving the community through the arts and art access in particular. We truly appreciate your generosity.