I remember the first time I went to the Evergreen Museum, a Johns Hopkins-owned house/art museum in North Baltimore. As I wandered around the rooms, admiring the furniture, I noticed a striking, small painting in the corner. “That?” the tour guide said. “It’s a Picasso.”
Baltimore has such grandly impressive art museums that it’s easy to forget about the Evergreen, but that’s a mistake: the house/museum’s period rooms also include some of the most exciting post-Impressionist art on view in Baltimore, including paintings by Modigliani, Degas, and, yes, Picasso. And the art hasn’t stopped coming in, either — in recent years, the museum has acquired or been gifted paintings, sculptures, and design objects, many of which haven’t been on display before.
The museum’s director and curator, James Archer Abbott, is charged with making sure all new work that enters the museum matches the aesthetic of the Garret family, the house’s original owners. “We want people to see that there are treasures always coming into the museum,” Abbott told the JHU Gazette. “We don’t have an accessions fund, and we really don’t often seek to buy major works. For the most part, these are gifts that are offered.” The new exhibit at the Evergreen showcases these new and recent acquisitions, which include 19th century African body adornments, a still life by Zelda Fitzgerald, and a painting by Louis Comfort Tiffany (you know, the lamp guy). Lasting Legacies is on view until February 23; more info here.