Especially renowned for its representation of Italian baroque painting and Dutch painting from the Golden Age, our European painting collection comprises works ranging from the twelfth to the early twentieth century and surveying all major styles, from medieval Gothic to impressionism. Among the many masterpieces are Georges de La Tour’s Magdalen with the Smoking Flame (c.1638–40), Rembrandt van Rijn’s Raising of Lazarus (c.1630), Edgar Degas’s The Bellelli Sisters (1862–64), and Paul Cézanne’s Sous-Bois (1894).
Georges de la Tour
The Magnificent Eleven
Does the focus on blockbuster temporary exhibitions cause us to miss treasures found in our own permanent collections? The Los Angeles Times posed this very question to a dozen curators and art specialists who then composed a list of the best museum pieces throughout the region. Eleven artworks were chosen from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Profoundly varied, pieces range from the ancient to the contemporary. We call them the Magnificent Eleven.
On view now in our European galleries are two life-size allegorical figure statues, Wealth and Prudence, by the late Florentine Baroque master, Giovanni Baratta (1640–1747)—just acquired through the largess of The Ahmanson Foundation. The rediscovery of these sculptures has been recognized as a major contribution to the study of early eighteenth-century Florentine art...
The viewing of art is, in most cases, a deeply private adventure, and so it was for me upon my first time really seeing Baron Antoine-Jean Gros’ Portrait of Second Lieutenant Charles Legrand. I first viewed the painting not in its majestic place on the third level of the Ahmanson Building but in a small book about Romanticism by Norbert Wolf that I picked up after leaving a wonderful exhibition featuring English Romantic-era painters at the Tate Britain. Not only was Romanticism the most elusive and diffuse of all the art movements, but the word itself fell into a vast no-man’s land. Magically, this is where my adventure began—with the Romantic movement and Baron Gros’ masterpiece...