Walter Gay Exhibit Opens at The Frick on Saturday

The Frick Art & Historical Center has scheduled a number of events around this new exhibit that runs through Jan. 6.

The Frick Art & Historical Center, 7227 Reynolds St. in Point Breeze, will present a major exhibition, "Impressions of Interiors: Gilded Age Paintings by Walter Gay," starting today, Oct. 6.

This exhibition, which has been in development for four years, examines the life and work of the American artist who specialized in painting the sumptuous interiors of wealthy collectors and society figures in late-19th and early 20th-century America and Europe. Comprising 69 paintings and works on paper by Gay, as well as a selection of ancillary historical material from 40 public and private collections, the exhibit will be on display at the Frick Art Museum through Jan. 6, 2013 before traveling to the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum in Palm Beach, FL.

A number of programs are scheduled in conjunction with this exhibit. (See attached PDF.)

"The three paintings by Walter Gay in our permanent collection provided the inspiration for us to organize this exhibition, which examines the work and life of an important Gilded Age artist, as well as his place in the history of American collecting, design, and taste," said Bill Bodine, director of the Frick Art & Historical Center. "This exhibition provides a rare opportunity for museum-goers to view nearly 70 superb paintings by Walter Gay—many of which are from private collections and have not been publicly exhibited since the artist's lifetime."

The exhibition provides an in-depth exploration of Walter Gay’s famous views of domestic spaces, and will be accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue, with topical essays exploring facets of Gay’s life and work, including: His life in Paris; the influence of his wife, Matilda Travers; the role of collecting and collectors in his “portraits of rooms;” the Rococo revival of the early 20th century; and Gay’s place among other artists of the period.

Guest Curator Isabel Taube has been working on this exhibition, in consultation with Frick Director of Curatorial Affairs Sarah Hall. The two traveled to Paris together to visit sites that Walter Gay had painted, and to see paintings in both private and public collections. Taube canvassed the United States looking at paintings also, as well as carefully studying prior research, publications, and exhibitions of Gay’s work to inform her selections. Many of the works in this exhibition are from private collections and have not been publicly exhibited since Gay’s lifetime.

"Impressions of Interiors: Gilded Age Paintings by Walter Gay" was made possible by a generous grant from The Richard C. von Hess Foundation.


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