A new exhibition program, Close Up, features a single work in Isabella Stewart Gardner’s collection. Removed from the historic palace and displayed in Hostetter Gallery for a short time, it is the subject of lectures, in-gallery presentations and this publication. To inaugurate the exhibition series, we chose a painting close to Isabella’s heart, an altarpiece of The Annunciation by Italian Renaissance painter Piermatteo d’Amelia. Traditionally found in our Raphael Room, we have moved it temporarily to Hostetter Gallery where we invite you to experience it close up and to enjoy every facet of the painting, from the graceful harmony of its composition to the meticulous execution of its finest details. While Gardner fell in love with this Annunciation, its history was only revealed after her death. This book recounts three fascinating stories behind this work of art: the riveting tales of its acquisition, its attribution, and its painter. Together they take us back through half a millennium of history, from the false compartment of a smuggler’s trunk on a train bound for Paris to the high altar of a tiny hermitage in rural Italy – with a brief detour to the Sistine Chapel. Like the exhibition, this book offers fresh perspectives on The Annunciation, shedding new light on a familiar masterpiece.
Softcover 60 Pages