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Home » News » Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home, 1492-1898 Media Preview

Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home, 1492-1898 Media Preview

Published October 21, 2014

Media Preview: Wednesday October 22, 2014 @ 10:00 a.m.
Exhibition: October 24, 2014 – January 11, 2015

Doña Mariana Belsunse y Salasar, circa 1780, Oil on Canvas,Brookyln Museum, Gift of Mrs. L.H. ShearmanThe Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida is back at it again this week with the opening of the next major exhibition Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home, 1492–1898. The media preview for this exhibition is at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, October 22. Take a peek into the homes and lives of New Spain’s wealthy and powerful during a first-of-its-kind exhibition at The Ringling.

Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home, 1492–1898 is the first major exhibition in the United States to explore the private lives and interiors of Spain’s colonial elite from Christopher Columbus landing in the New World until the Spanish American War. The exhibition will be on display from October 24, 2014 to January 11, 2015 in the galleries of the Arthur F. and Ulla R. Searing Wing of the Ringling Museum.

This is a significant exhibition for The Ringling. The scale and complexity of the installation has really stretched our preparatory staff. We are particularly pleased to present this exhibition as it celebrates the Spanish cultural legacy that helped to form Florida’s early history.

Steven High, Executive Director of The Ringling

The galleries will be transformed to represent the interiors of homes owned by elite members of Spanish Colonial society. The exhibition explores themes including colonialism, indigenous influences and Creole culture, while looking at both the glamorous reception rooms and the intimate areas such as bedrooms or family chapels. The sala de estrado (women’s sitting room), will also be featured to display the influence of females inside the home and to examine their social identity through the materials they displayed.  The exhibition will feature approximately 160 paintings, sculptures, prints, textiles and decorative art objects.

Painting of ladyI had the pleasure of seeing Behind Closed Doors in Brooklyn last fall and am excited that we will be bringing such a unique experience to the Ringling. Based on exhaustive scholarly research, the exhibition offers a range of objects grouped as they would have been in the home, allowing us to understand how social spaces were defined and what sorts of messages they communicated.

Chris Jones, Curator at The Ringling

Behind Closed Doors consists of works from the Brooklyn Museum’s collections and loans from distinguished institutions and private collectors. The exhibition is organized by Richard Aste, Curator of European Art at the Brooklyn Museum.

For more information, visit Behind Closed Doors at The Ringling. To view events related to this exhibition, visit Related Events.