The longstanding commitment of Princeton’s Department of Art and Archaeology to the study of art of the Middle Ages is supported in the Museum by examples of architectural sculpture; stained glass windows, among them an example from Chartres Cathedral; ivories; Limoges enamels; metalwork; and distinguished examples of German, Flemish, and Spanish polychrome wooden sculptures. 

The collection of old master paintings ranges from Italian gold ground panels by Guido da Siena, Francesco Traini, and Fra Angelico to 19th-century art, with particular strength in the Mannerist era. The important group of Dutch Mannerist paintings includes works by Hendrik Goltzius and Abraham Bloemaert. The Baroque is represented by Pietro da Cortona and Giovanni Battista Gaulli, while rococo masters include François Boucher and Jean-Siméon Chardin. The age of Enlightenment can be studied in paintings by Angelika Kauffmann, the studio of Jacques-Louis David, and Francisco de Goya. 

Among the 19th-century holdings are works by Jean-Léon Gérôme, Gustave Courbet, Édouard Manet, and Claude Monet. The art of the early 20th century includes paintings by Odilon Redon and the Russian master Ilya Repin, whose works are rare outside his homeland. 

The Henry and Rose Pearlman Foundation, Inc., has placed on loan a magnificent collection of Post-Impressionist art, including masterpieces by Vincent van Gogh, Paul Cézanne, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Amedeo Modigliani, and Chaim Soutine. 

Cézanne and the Modern

This fall, visitors to the Princeton University Art Museum have the opportunity to view remarkable works from the Pearlman Collection by Vincent van Gogh, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Édouard Manet, Amedeo Modigliani, Chaïm Soutine, and—especially—Paul Cézanne. The works return to Princeton, where they have been on loan since 1976, fresh from an international tour with record-breaking attendance. Without question, the twenty-four drawings, watercolors, and oil paintings by Cézanne form the centerpiece of the Pearlman Collection—particularly the sixteen watercolors that are among the finest and best-preserved compilations of the artist’s work in that medium. In the exhibition at Princeton, the oil paintings and watercolors are interspersed, which follows the artist’s working practice. 

Henry Pearlman | The Collector

The story of Henry Pearlman’s collection is a distinctly American one: a rags-to-riches tale of a self-made businessman who pursued his passion for modern art alongside other lifelong passions, including baseball and chess.

Guercino Caricatures

Guercino’s drawings, rendered with spare expressive lines, reveal the artist’s extraordinary ability to observe and capture on paper both the physical deformities and the psychological states of mind of many of his contemporaries.

Recent Acquisition: Crucifixion by Jacopo del Casentino

The Museum recently acquired a Crucifixion by the fourteenth-century Florentine painter Jacopo del Casentino and a Virgin and Child, dated around 1500, by the Northern painter known as the Master of the Magdalen Legend. The paintings once belonged to Allan Marquand, the Museum’s founding director, and came to us through the generosity of two of his descendants.

Betsy J. Rosasco

Research Curator of European Painting and Sculpture

Betsy Rosasco is an alumna of Smith College (B.A.) and New York University's Institute of Fine Arts, (M.A.; Ph.D.). After teaching for a year at Bryn Mawr College, she joined the Princeton University Art Museum in 1981. The Department of European Painting and Sculpture covers European art from the later Middle Ages to the modern period. Recent exhibitions in this area have included The Legacy of Homer: Four Centuries of Art from the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts, Paris(2005); Mir Isskustva: Russia's Age of Elegance (2006); and A Painting in Context: Pietro da Cortona's Saint Martina Refuses to Adore the Idols (2007). Betsy’s publications include The Sculptures of the Château of Marly during the Reign of Louis XIV (New York and London, 1986), and with Norman Muller and James Marrow, Herri met de Bles: Studies and Explorations of the World Landscape Tradition (Tournhout, 1998). Recent articles include “The Mystical Crucifixion: A Dominican Picture” and “Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg’s Ulysses Fleeing the Cave of Polyphemus: A Painting by a Danish Student of Jacques-Louis David in 1812,” both in the Record of the Princeton University Art Museum(2003 and 2006 respectively), and “Two French Royal Sculpture Gardens: The Orangerie of Versailles and Jardin Haut of Marly,” inStudies in the History of Art (forthcoming).