orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

November 3, 2012

Stark Museum of Art opens Medieval ‘Books of Hours’ exhibit

Special to The Leader
The Orange Leader

ORANGE — On Tuesday, Nov. 6, Stark Museum of Art in Orange, Texas, will open the special mini-exhibit “On the Wing: Birds in Books of Hours,” which features illustrated manuscripts from the Middle Ages. The exhibit, on view through Jan. 12, 2013, will feature four medieval Books of Hours, each open to a page containing a hand-painted illustration of a bird.

The “Books of Hours” in this mini-exhibit are from the permanent collection of the Museum. The exhibition includes Christmas imagery, such as the Bedford Trend “Annunciation.” The theme of this year’s exhibit is the use of birds in medieval prayer books. Birds appear as both symbols and decorations in medieval manuscripts.

In “Books of Hours,” the illustrations of religious scenes included birds such as doves and eagles that served as symbols. In the border illustrations, artists included birds as colorful and active decorative imagery. Dating from the fifteenth to the early sixteenth century, each “Book of Hours” was painted by hand with rich decorative details by French, Dutch and Flemish artists.

“Each year the Stark Museum of Art exhibits its medieval manuscripts using a different theme. We open the pages to never before exhibited images, and this year, we chose to highlight some of the natural history imagery that appears in Books of Hours from the Museum’s collection. This exhibit is also part of the Museum’s holiday offering since the prayer books contain Christmas imagery, such as the beautiful illumination of the Annunciation in this year’s exhibit,” said Sarah Boehme, Managing Director.

The Museum will offer gallery spotlights of “On the Wing” during its annual Holiday Exhibit Celebration, taking place from 5 p.m. - 8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 15 and Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2012. During these two nights, visitors can also enjoy live music by local performers and light refreshments. Attendees will receive free admission to the Holiday Exhibit Celebration by bringing a non-perishable food item, which will be donated to area charitable organizations.

In addition to “On the Wing,” visitors have the opportunity to view “National Geographic Greatest Photographs of the American West,” a collection of remarkable and iconic photographs of the American West from a span of 125 years at National Geographic, which is currently on view and will be displayed through Jan. 26, 2013.

Located at 712 Green Ave. in Orange, Texas, the Stark Museum of Art is open to the public from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. The Museum is closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve Day, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Group tours are available by appointment. For more information call 409-886-2787 or visit www.starkmuseum.org.