Artists’ Relationships To Each Other Explored in New Exhibitions

The relationship of British artists to their counterparts across the English Channel will be explored in the exhibition “Varieties of Romantic Experience: Drawings from the Collection of Charles Ryskamp,” which opens on Thursday, Feb. 4, at the Yale Center for British Art. It will be on view through April 25.

The show includes over 200 works on paper — about half by British artists and the rest from French, German, Danish and Dutch artists — acquired over the course of 50 years by Charles Ryskamp (M.A. ‘51, Ph.D. ‘56), professor emeritus at Princeton University and director emeritus of the Pierpont Morgan Library and the Frick Collection in New York.

“Despite the very different circumstances in which artists across Europe were working and the diverse modes of representation they employed, they shared common concerns and frequently explored similar themes,” note the exhibition organizers, Ryskamp and Matthew Hargraves, assistant curator for collections research at the museum.

The exhibition (and accompanying book) will focus on Romanticism’s exploration of two themes in particular: nature and the imagination. The featured artists will include J.M.W. Turner, Cornelius Varley, William Blake, Henry Fuseli, Caspar David Friedrich, Camille Corot, Eugène Delacroix and Edgar Degas.

Student Guide Exhibition

Also opening on Feb. 4 is “John Flaxman Modeling the Bust of William Hayley,” the first of two displays created by student tour guides at the museum as part of “Art in Focus,” a program that introduces the undergraduates into every aspect of organizing an exhibit.

The portrait at the center of the exhibition, which continues through May 20, was created by George Romney in 1795. It depicts John Flaxman sculpting a bust of the poet William Hayley with assistance from Thomas Alphonso Hayley, Flaxman’s apprentice and Haley’s son. The exhibition uses the painting as a jumping-off point to explore the four artists’ relationships to their media and to each other.

The Yale Center for British Art, at 1080 Chapel St., is open to the public free of charge 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and noon-5 p.m. Sunday. For further information, call (203) 432-2800 or visit

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