Shortly after the inception of the Museum of Art and Archaeology at the University of Missouri-Columbia, fourteen Old Master paintings were donated by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation in 1961. This group of paintings—all Italian in origin except for one, a copy of Rembrandt's Sacrifice of Isaac—forms the core of the museum's Western art collection. Representing the Renaissance and Baroque periods, Missouri's Kress Collection demonstrates not only the chronological progression of styles but also the geographic range of Italian art. The paintings include altarpieces, portraits, sacred and mythological images, and genre pieces. This catalog presents relevant facets of each work with lively essays by notable scholars Norman E. Land, Burton Dunbar, Judith Mann, Marjorie Och, and William E. Wallace.
Serving as a valuable record of the University of Missouri's Kress Collection, the catalog also recognizes the cultural impact and historical significance of one of America's great collectors. The introductory essay by Marilyn Perry, the current Kress Foundation president, recounts the history of the Kress Collection, the unparalleled philanthropy of traveling exhibits arranged by self- made millionaire Samuel H. Kress and his family, as well as the widespread donations of pieces from the collection. More than three thousand works of art from the Kress Collection, considered "one of the most distinguished ever assembled" by a private collector, have been donated to museums and institutions across the country.
The Samuel H. Kress Study Collection at the University of Missouri provides a scholarly consideration of this portion of the Kress Collection. An important addition to any art book collection, this catalog will be accessible to both the art historian and the general reader.
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