Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Take a slow look at hunting art exhibition at Stark Museum of Art

An art museum might be the only place that it's acceptable to stop and stare. The Stark Museum of Art invites the community to do just that now through July 8 to take a longer look at "A Noble Pastime: Hunting Pictures from the Collection of the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation."

Since October, guests to the Museum have been able to view a different perspective on a common theme in Southeast Texas - hunting - in "A Noble Pastime." Now the museum wants visitors to take a different look at that exhibit before it closes, and try the method of Slow Art Viewing.

Slow Art Viewing encourages the viewer to look carefully at works of art. On average, museum visitors spend less than eight seconds viewing any given works of art. The Slow Art Method counteracts that tendency by encouraging the viewer to look at a few works of art for 10 minutes each.

"Slow Art Viewing empowers the viewer to take control over the viewing experience and to make discoveries," said Stark Museum of Art Curator Sarah Boehme. "You do not need special knowledge or training to enjoy and appreciate art. You bring your own perceptions and experiences to bear."

The Museum has a brochure available to guide guests through the process of Slow Art Viewing. It provides recommendations for looking closely and carefully at works of art to enhance their experience.

"A Noble Pastime" includes 16th- to 19th-century representations of various aspects of the chase, such as hunting expeditions, game pieces, and portraits of hunters, as well as animals. This exhibition seeks to illuminate various hunting methods, to underscore the role of the hunt as an exclusive pursuit in early-modern European culture and to emphasize the use of hunting imagery as a conscious tool for fashioning one's self-identity.

The exhibition has 56 works of art including paintings, prints, illustrated rare books and a decorative arts object. Artists include Jacques Callot, Willem van Aelst, George Stubbs and many other French, Dutch, British, German and Flemish artists. Portraits of hunting dogs and a hunter's horse show the importance of animals to the enjoyment of the hunting adventure and to the success of the hunt. Works in the exhibition feature falconry, the use of trained hawks to hunt prey. Educational additions to the exhibition include an audio tour, a scavenger hunt and a reading area. The exhibition is a loan from the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation, Houston, Texas.

The Stark Museum of Art is located at 712 Green Avenue in Orange, Texas and is open to the public Wednesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free. For more information visit starkmuseum.org or call (409) 886-2787.


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