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Yale British Museum of Art


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8 replies to this topic

#1
hollowneck

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I just noticed ( and was somewhat stunned) to note that there was no mention on this forum about the superb "Spreading Canvas" exhibition at the Yale British Museum of Art. Unfortunately, this exhibit closes December 4, just a few days away from this posting.

 

I live nearby to New Haven, CT and it was easy for me to visit the FREE exhibition - twice! Although the exhibit was focused on painters of maritime subjects (in the U.K. or about U.K. subjects), there are three (3) superb models on display - more than I saw a couple years ago at the London Science Museum! The painters are iconic - all, including Van DeVeldes, elder and younger, Serres, Pocock, Scott, Constable, even an early J.W.W. Turner - to mention just a handful.

 

The first item that greets you at the exhibit space is a model of the HMS Coronation, a 1/4"-scale monster, fully-rigged 2nd Rate from the Kriegstein Collection. Another Kriegstein model on loan for the exhi bit is the HMS Lion, a true (and very early) "Dockyard Model." Lastly, the HMS Centurian is from the NMM in Greenwich, U.K. This fully-rigged model is especially amazing; all are stunning, but this one is on par with the HMS Burford at the Mystic collection.

 

I attempted to take some photos (both visits) but the policy is no photography and they aggressively enforce it. I guess the curators don't want you to steal the soul of the exhibition. :huh:

 

More likely reason for the photo embargo is the following (commercial) tip:

 

There is an excellent full-color and large hardcover book available for the exhibition: "Spreading Canvas." This is a wonderful reference and it is now in my personal reference library (alongside Seawatch's Kriegstein Collection). The book is well-written and edited, copiously graphic with all artwork/painting/engraving items shown in decent size (with other artworks not shown at Yale). Good printing and binding quality, Better be! $70 at the shop, $75 on line.

 

Sorry this wasn't posted earlier, understanding that only a handful of MSW members would be able to go to the Yale campus in New Haven, Connecticut. There are some details at the museum's web site:

 

http://britishart.ya...marine-painting

 

Ron

 

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#2
druxey

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I'm sorry that this exhibition was not better (or more widely) advertised. I note that it has been open since mid September!! Well, thanks for making us aware of what we've missed, Ron. The book looks interesting.


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#3
hollowneck

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Druxey,

 

Indeed. It was open for most of the fall. I only learned about it about a month ago and I apologize to all MSWers that I neglected to post on here sooner. The museum was significantly "upgraded" a couple years ago and they also kept that fact under wraps.

 

At the end of the day, museum management would be wise to consider having a communications/pr firm - or a staffer - to get this vital job done. Unfortunately, Yale British is like many other small museums (especially those affiliated with University's and Colleges) and has little interest in promoting its existence to the public. A shame, eh?

 

I do recommend the book. A little pricey, but well done and a thorough overview. In fact, I think I'm going to pitch the NRG to do a review. Being mostly "art" it's somewhat tangential to our crafting interests, but there is significant historical maritime history as well as extensive illustrations and pictorials that members might appreciate.

 

Ron


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#4
Beef Wellington

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Ron, looks like it closes Sunday 4th December, hopefully I can get a chance to head down this weekend. Thanks for posting!
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Cheers,
 
Jason


"But if you ask the reason of this, many will be found who never thought about it"
 
In the shipyard:

HMS Snake (c1797: Cruizer Class, ship rigged sloop)

HMS Jason (c1794: Artois Class 38 gun frigate)


#5
hollowneck

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Jason,

 

I hope you made it! I am doing a book review for "Spreading Canvas" for NRG Journal/MSW later this month.

 

Ron


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#6
jhearl

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At the end of the day, museum management would be wise to consider having a communications/pr firm - or a staffer - to get this vital job done. Unfortunately, Yale British is like many other small museums (especially those affiliated with University's and Colleges) and has little interest in promoting its existence to the public. A shame, eh?

 

I worked for a small museum for about 12 years and while we had some marketing in the early years of my tenure, there was never a budget for it and it was never a priority for senior staff. Over the years, I came to realize why. Visitors don't contribute much, if anything, to the ongoing cost of keeping a museum open. They may be the stated reason for a museum's existence, but visitation fees don't come close to paying all the bills. Many if not most museums rely predominantly on major donors for support. Exhibitions keep curators busy and show the donors that the museum is performing its "function" as a museum open to the public. But you can hardly expect a free exhibit to support the institution. So, really, there's little point in marketing to potential visitors because there's almost no return on the investment. Most of the "marketing" is done to potential and existing donors who will ultimately pay to keep the lights on.

 

Cheers -

John


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#7
Altduck

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John

 

Thanks for the reality check.  It's easy to forget about the business side of things.

 

Richard


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     Richard

 

 


#8
druxey

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I appreciate your perspective, John, but it would not really have cost anything for the Museum to have posted a notice on-line with this forum, for instance.


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#9
Beef Wellington

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Ron - sadly, I didn't make it due to kid commitments, but I have the book on my Xmas list...assuming its getting a good review? :) 

 

John - similar comments, its maybe less a comment on the business side of the museum to what a museum should be in an ideal world.  Just a shame that these days the 'public' is not really a target for museum activities, and seems a bit of an 'executive toy' to be the big donors.


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Cheers,
 
Jason


"But if you ask the reason of this, many will be found who never thought about it"
 
In the shipyard:

HMS Snake (c1797: Cruizer Class, ship rigged sloop)

HMS Jason (c1794: Artois Class 38 gun frigate)





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