In Celebration of the 80th Anniversary of the Gallery Council of the Memorial Art Gallery

July 31–October 11, 2020

This exhibition 1940/2020 celebrates the 80th anniversary of the Gallery Council. From its origins in 1940 as the Women’s Council, the organization has served as the primary auxiliary arm of MAG by raising funds for exhibitions and collections and providing volunteers for outreach programs.

Beginning in 1956 with the purchase of a group of Japanese katagami, or fabric stencils, the Council has also raised funds to enrich MAG’s permanent collection through dozens of acquisitions. A significant number of these works, including Rachel Ruysch’s Floral Still Life (detail above), Kiki Smith’s woodcut portfolio Mortal, and Lesley Dill’s mixed media Homage to F.K. #2, are by women artists.

This exhibition presents only a small percentage of the Council’s gifts of art. Over the years, the organization has also helped MAG acquire several major paintings, including Hyacinthe Rigaud’s Charles Gaspard Guillaume de Vintimille du Luc, Archbishop of Paris (1656-1746), Angelica Kauffmann’s John Monck, Helen Frankenthaler’s Seer, and Lilly Martin Spencer’s Peeling Onions. These works, displayed in the first- and second-floor galleries, will be identified by special labels.

read the press release

Rachel Ruysch, Floral Still Life, detail, 1686