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Art Talk at the Bruce: L.A. Ring, Denmark, and the Threshold of Modernity

Patricia G. Berman, the Theodora L. and Stanley H. Feldberg Professor of Art at Wellesley College.

Last month, the Bruce Museum opened a major new exhibition in its newly renovated main gallery: On the Edge of the World: Masterworks by Laurits Andersen Ring from SMK—the National Gallery of Denmark. Initiated by the American Friends of Statens Museum for Kunst, the national gallery of Denmark, the exhibition showcases 25 of the most important pieces from the SMK’s collection that represent the key themes, sheer variety, and complexity of his oeuvre. The exhibition travels to only two U.S. venues. The Bruce Museum is the only one on the East Coast.

Laurits Andersen Ring’s work recorded transformations in the cultural world of Denmark in the late nineteenth century. It forms a fascinating dialogue with the community of artists throughout Europe who registered the rapidity with which industry changed the social and material landscape. In her presentation, “L.A. Ring, Denmark, and the Threshold of Modernity,” Patricia G. Berman, an authority on Danish art, examines Ring’s prescience as both an eyewitness to and a participant in late nineteenth-century culture, and Copenhagen as part of a robust exchange among European art circles.

Berman is the Theodora L. and Stanley H. Feldberg Professor of Art at Wellesley College, where she teaches modern and contemporary art, the history of photography, and propaganda studies. She has published widely and curated exhibitions in the U.S. and Europe. Her books include “In Another Light; Danish Art in the Nineteenth Century,” and studies of the Norwegian artist Edvard Munch and of the Belgian James Ensor. Her most recent project is an exhibition of Edvard Munch’s photography entitled The Experimental Self, currently on view at Stockholm’s Thielska Galleriet.

Museum members and students with ID, free; non-members $15.

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