In previous posts I have written about the fantastic art museums I've visited throughout America's Midwest. Earlier this year, we were greatly disappointed that we didn't visit Canada, but our visit to the Toledo Art Museum certainly didn't disappoint.  

We visited the museum on a Wednesday morning, arriving exactly when it opened.  What a special treat to be practically the only visitor in the whole museum!  It was like I had the whole museum to myself.  And what a museum!  The Toledo Art Museum has one of the best permanent collections I've seen.

Just a bit of history about the Toledo Art Museum:  The museum was founded in 1901 by Edward Drummond Libbey (yes, of the Libbey Glass Company).  Throughout their lives both Edward Libbey and his wife, Florence Scott Libbey, donated both land to build the current building and funds for its upkeep.  Many times Edward Libbey pledged money for the museum on the condition that the citizens of Toledo would donate the same amount; each time the public fundraising was successful.  Edward Libbey died in 1925, but bequeathed $1,000,000 to the museum in his will. Several years later Florence Libbey sold most of her husband's assets in order to fund building additions to the museum. This monetary gift allowed 2,500 men to be employed during the middle of the Great Depression. Thanks to the benevolence of the Libbey's (many of the paintings in the museum were purchased through the Libbey Endowment) and the continued support of the museum members, the Toledo Art is FREE to the public.

Nearly all of the works that I'm posting were purchased with funds from the Libbey Endowment  Now, this way to view some masterpieces! 

As usual I'll start with the Impressionists:

Two exquisite works by Claude Monet:

Water Lilies (1922-1925) by Claude Monet
Between 1914 and 1925 Claude Monet completed more than 60 paintings of his water garden, capturing the light conditions at different times of day and in different weather conditions.

Antibes Seen from La Salis (1888) by Claude Monet

Just as Vincent van Gogh and Pierre Bonnard loved the light of the south of France, so did Claude Monet as shown in this view of the coastal town of Antibes.

Avenue at Chantilly (1888) by Paul CĂ©zanne 

The Glade (1890) by Paul CĂ©zanne

Often called the "Father of Modern Art" Paul CĂ©zanne had a direct influence on two of the 20th century's most prolific artists: his color theories influenced Henri Matisse and his geometric structure of space helped Pablo Picasso develop Cubism.

The Green Jardinière (1882) by Pierre Auguste Renoir

Road at Wargemont (1879) by Pierre Auguste Renoir

Both of these painting by Renoir feature jewel-like colors and wonderful brushwork.  The young woman in the top painting is Aline Charigot, a seamstress who frequently modeled for Renoir.  She would eventually become his wife. The landscape painting below was painted while Renoir was a guest at an estate in northern France.

In the Garden at Maurecourt (1884) by Berthe Morisot

If you have been following this blog, you know that Berthe Morisot is one of my favorite painters.  I was thrilled when I saw this painting in the museum's collection.  The painting is set in the garden of the country home of Morisot's sister, Edma.  The young girl in the foreground is probably Morisot's daughter, Julie.

Peasants Resting (1881) by Camille Pissarro
The Roofs of Old Rouen, Gray Weather (1896) by Camille Pissarro
Still Life (1867) by Camille Pissarro
An innovator in his techniques, Pissarro was a central figure of the Impressionist painters. He was an influence to many Post-Impressionists painters especially CĂ©zanne and Gauguin.

Antonin Proust (1880) by Édouard Manet
Édouard Manet was a groundbreaking Realist painter whose style was much admired by a group of young painters eventually known as the Impressionists.

Flowers and Fruit (1866) by Henri Fantin-Latour
Henri Fantin-Latour was famous for his still-life paintings.  He became renown for his precise rendering of nature.  For example, look at the exquisite detailing in the orange segments in the close-up in the bottom photo.

La Salle Clarac (1922) by Édouard Vuillard
This painting is one of four paintings of interior scenes set in some of Édouard Vuillard's favorite galleries of the Louvre, painted on commission for a private home in Switzerland.

The Camp Santo, Venice (1842) by J. M. W. Turner
This is the first painting I've posted by the British master J. M. W. Turner. Turner is perhaps the most famous English Romantic landscape artist and his work is regarded as a Romantic preface to Impressionism.

View of the Riva degli Schiavoni, Venice (1730s) by Canaletto
Christ and the Centurian (1575-1580) by Veronese
Both Canaletto and Veronese were one of the leading painters living in Venice during their respective lifetimes.

The Toledo Art Museum has such a superb permanent collection that I want to divide my posts.  In the next post I'm going to show you my favorite Dutch paintings.

For more information visit: http://www.toledomuseum.org/.

Toledo Art Museum
2445 Monroe Street
Toledo, OH   43620
Phone: 419.255.6000

For directions: click here.
  • Admission is FREE every day for all visitors.
  • There may be a charge for special exhibitions.
  • Closed Mondays.
  • Closed January 1, July 4, Thanksgiving, Christmas Day.
  • Open 10:00-4:00 on Tuesday-Thursday.
  • Open 10:00-10:00 on Friday.
  • Open 10:00-6:00 on Saturday.
  • Open 12:00-6:00 on Sunday.
NOTE: All photos of the paintings in this blog post were taken by me on my visit to the Toledo Art Museum in May, 2012.

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