A! Magazine for the Arts

King University Unveils Online Museum of Fine Arts

April 22, 2013

BRISTOL, Tenn. – King University has announced the launch of the King University Museum of Fine Arts. The Museum of Fine Arts is a web-based art gallery at museum.king.edu comprised of the Neal and Alice Caldwell Art Collection.

"We are delighted to share the Neal and Alice Caldwell Art Collection at King University in a format where all may enjoy the extraordinary array of art," said Dr. Greg Jordan, president of King University. "For many years, the Neal and Alice Caldwell Art Collection at King University has added to the aesthetic and cultural vibrancy of our campus by providing our students and the regional community access to original artistic works of this significance. The addition of our online museum now offers the global community the opportunity to enjoy the original artistic works of skilled masters. We hope you will take a moment to visit museum.king.edu and browse through our collection."

In December 2003, King University Trustee Neal Caldwell and wife Alice (Morrow) Caldwell (1951 King alumna) presented King with a group of works from their personal art collection. Since that time, the University has continued to receive gifts from the Caldwell family, forming an impressive gathering that features some of the world's finest artists.

The King University Museum of Fine Arts now features more than 360 original pieces of art and 65 artifacts spanning centuries, genres and media. These original works include such masters as Rembrandt, Corot, Turner, Picasso, Dalí, Toulouse-Lautrec, Whistler, Marsh, Chagall and Matisse, among others. The collection represents early works such as an early illuminated choral manuscript penned on vellum to some of the most iconic and recognizable images of modern art.

Artists from throughout the world are represented, including those from Russia, Ireland, the United Kingdom, France, Poland, Austria and Australia. The collection offers insight into many movements and artist groups such as proto-impressionism, surrealism, Cubism, Romanticism and dadaism. It also illustrates the friendships and associations between artists such as Pissarro, who was a student of Corot, a contemporary of Degas, and whose talent and works influenced Cézanne, Gauguin, Monet, Seurat, and Cassatt.

Prominent artists represented in the collection include Rembrandt van Rijn (Dutch, 1606-1669), a prolific and influential master who remains an iconic symbol of artistic excellence. Other touchstone artists are J.M.W. Turner (English, 1775-1851), a dominant British landscape painter who displayed tremendous presence throughout the Royal Academy, and Jean- Baptiste-Camille Corot (French, 1796-1875), who is recognized as one of the foremost painters of nature and the human form.

Some of the modern artists represented in the Neal and Alice Caldwell Art Collection include Wassily Kandinsky (Russian, 1866-1944), Marc Chagall (French, 1887-1985), Toulouse-Lautrec (French, 1864-1901), Pablo Ruiz Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973) and Salvador Dalí (Spanish, 1904-1989).

Among those influencing American schools are James Whistler (American, 1834-1903) who is often related to the Impressionist movement; Maurice Brazil Prendergast (American, 1859-1924) who is considered America's first Modernist painter; and Reginald Marsh (American, 1898-1954), whose paintings focused mostly on New York City street life.

The collection is a resource for King students, allowing them the opportunity to study works at close range without leaving the campus. The collection is also a community resource. A portion of the collection is on display in the E.W. King Library and available for viewing at no cost to visitors.

Regional artists draw on the collection for inspiration, creating such events as the Artistic Reflections II event that premiered musical compositions based on the visual aspects of the works. The University hosts events that offer members of the community the opportunity to view concentrations of some of the prominent works.

To view the Neal and Alice Caldwell Art Collection at the King University Museum of Fine Arts, visit http://museum.king.edu.