Greenwich, Connecticut’s Bruce Museum’s current exhibit, “Masterpieces of European Painting from Museo de Arte de Ponce,” offers viewers the opportunity to see the highlights of the collection of one of the largest museums in the Caribbean. Established in 1959 by industrialist and philanthropist Luis A. Ferré (former governor of Puerto Rico and father of writer Rosario Ferré), the museum holds more than 4,000 works of art by European old masters, as well as modern and contemporary American, Latin American, African and Caribbean artists. [My first ever job—when I was still in high school in Ponce—was at the Museum, so I am particularly fond of the collection.]
The exhibit at the Bruce Museum is made possible by the temporary closing of the Museo de Ponce for renovations and expansion. It offers a rare opportunity to see a selection of works by Francisco Goya, Lucas Cranach the Elder, Oeter Paul Rubens, Francisco Zurbarán, Anthony van Dyck, Charles Le Brun and Jean-Léon Gérôme.
The Museum holds quite a spectacular collection of Pre-Raphaelite paintings, none of which are mentioned in the review. A glimpse of those alone would be worth the trip to Greenwich in you are in the region. The review does not mention either whether the museum’s best-known painting, Frederic Lord Leighton’s Flaming June (1895, above) is part of the exhibit. The painting had been on loan to the Prado Museum in Madrid until June 21, 2009.
“Masterpieces of European Painting From Museo de Arte de Ponce,” Bruce Museum, 1 Museum Drive, Greenwich, through Sept. 6. Information: (203) 869-0376 or brucemuseum.org.
For the complete review go to http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/02/nyregion/02artct.html