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Date: Dec 03, 2010
Hofstra University Professor Donna R. Barnes Curates Dutch Art ExhibitionHofstra University, Hempstead, NY … Donna R. Barnes, professor of Teaching, Literacy, and Leadership at Hofstra University’s School of Education, Health, and Human Services, is the guest curator for Smakelijk Eten at the Westfries Museum in Hoorn, the Netherlands. This exhibition of 17th-century Dutch art works focused on food and drink opens on December 9, 2010, and will be on view until March 13, 2011. The exhibition traces food from its sources in the sea and land, garnered via fishing, farming, and hunting, to the markets, kitchens, and tables. Using still life paintings, marine paintings, landscapes, market, kitchen, and tavern scenes, the exhibition draws upon 13 collections in the Netherlands. A special section will be devoted to works on paper featuring prints and drawings by Jan Luyken, 1649-1712, on loan from the Amsterdam Historical Museum.
Smakelijk Eten is the seventh exhibition of 17th-century Dutch art curated by Dr. Barnes. She has previously organized four 17th-century Dutch art exhibitions at the Hofstra University Museum, including People at Work (1988), Street Scenes: Leonard Bramer’s Drawings of Dutch Daily Life (1991), The Butcher, The Baker, The Candle-stick Maker: Jan Luyken’s Mirrors of Dutch Daily Life (1995), and Playing, Learning, Working in Amsterdam’s Golden Age: Jan Luyken’s Mirrors of Daily Life (2004). She was the guest curator for an exhibition of Jan Luyken’s prints and drawings at the Amsterdam Historical Museum in Autumn 1997; and was co-curator for Matters of Taste: Food and Drink in Seventeenth Century Dutch Art and Life at the Albany Institute of History and Art in 2002.
“For more than 25 years, 17th-century Dutch art has been my passion,” Dr. Barnes observed. “It has been both intellectually rewarding and aesthetically pleasurable to study the rich repository of Dutch art works in museums in the Netherlands, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Spain, Germany, and Italy.”
Dr. Barnes worked closely with Ad Geerdink, director of the Westfries Museum in Hoorn, and Cees Bakker, the museum’s chief curator, in organizing the exhibition and in preparing an illustrated book to accompany it. She is the principal author of the book’s text. The Dutch-language version of the book is titled Smakelijk Eten which is what Dutch people say when they wish people to have a good meal and enjoy their food. The English-language version of the book is titled, Food for Thought. Both versions of the illustrated book are published by Peter Sasburg in Midwoud, North Holland.
Two other museums in Hoorn are joining forces with the Westfries Museum in celebrating Dutch foodways. The Museum of the Twentieth Century (Museum van de Twintigste Eeuw) will display kitchen appliances and utensils from the turn of the 20th century through the 1970s in an exhibition Aan Tafel. The Dutch Poster Museum (Affiche Museum) will display classical 20th-century Dutch advertizing posters related to food and beverages, in its A la Carte exhibition.
All three museums are preparing for a celebratory opening afternoon on December 9 with ceremonies beginning at the historic late Gothic Oosterkerk in Hoorn to be followed by visitations to each of the three museum sites. Dr. Barnes will be honored at the opening.
For more than thirty years, Dr. Barnes has been conducting research on the ways American, Canadian, and European museums fulfill diverse educational roles. She has also taught a graduate level Foundations of Education course, “The Museum as Educator,” for more than 25 years, which draws not only upon her research but also her curatorial experiences. This fall 2010 semester she has taught the class, drawing particularly upon her curatorial work for the Westfries Museum’s exhibition and the spring 2010 semester exhibition, “Children’s Pleasures: American Celebrations of Childhood” at the Hofstra University Museum.