Blessed Art Thou: Images of the Virgin Mary in the Ahmanson Collection
Mary Cassatt, Sir Jacob Epstein, Dame Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Ale Groen, Master Paul of Leutschau, Patty Wickman, William Kurelek, Jean-Paul Lemieux, Jose Juan Aguilar, Linda Syddick Napaltjarri, Edward Burra, Marie Romero Cash, Patrociño Barela, Adrian Allinson, Sun Xun, and Georges Rouault
“Blessed Art Thou” presents paintings, drawings, and sculptures by nineteen artists that have been inspired by the image of the Virgin Mary spanning five centuries. Starting with the oldest piece, a polychromed carving by an unknown 15th century Flemish painter, to the modern assemblage work by Chinese multi-media artist Sun Xun, each artwork captures the spirit of its time, as well as the cultural significance of the religious context. Historically the most frequent image of the Mary is the subject of Madonna and Child, which simultaneously represents a universal image of motherly love and embodies the core doctrines of the Christian faith—the Virgin birth and the Incarnation. The diversity of these beautiful works in the Ahmanson Collection portray the ways that this reality has captured the hearts and minds of artists over the centuries to create powerful images of transcendence.