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A lively and vibrantly colored painting dense with figures that take up the entire canvas. These include a wizard-like man with a long white beard in a black top hat, spectacles, and a bright-blue robe adorned with celestial imagery. Robed revelers pass behind him on white horses, and he is flanked by two figures: to the left, a medium-skinned woman in a yellow dress holds a cone-shaped telescope aloft and peers into it with one eye, while at left, a light-skinned child wearing a cone-shaped party hat holds a horn-shaped noisemaker to their mouth. A lively and vibrantly colored painting dense with figures that take up the entire canvas. These include a wizard-like man with a long white beard in a black top hat, spectacles, and a bright-blue robe adorned with celestial imagery. Robed revelers pass behind him on white horses, and he is flanked by two figures: to the left, a medium-skinned woman in a yellow dress holds a cone-shaped telescope aloft and peers into it with one eye, while at left, a light-skinned child wearing a cone-shaped party hat holds a horn-shaped noisemaker to their mouth.


Year in Review: 2023 Additions to the Collection


Hundreds of artworks entered the museum’s collection last year, each one broadening and deepening the stories we can share. Get to know some of our most notable new works below.

Contemporary American Sculpture (1940) by Ben Shahn

Ben Shahn

Our first acquisition of 2023, this painting by Social Realist Ben Shahn blends fact and fiction. It depicts an art gallery; in the middle of the space are eight sculptures, all of which were actually displayed at a 1940 exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. On the walls are three large paintings based on Shahn’s own photographs of working-class Americans, which, in their lack of framing, read more as portals to the world outside. The juxtaposition delivers a compelling message about the art world and issues of inclusion—and exclusion—that remains highly relevant today.

Find Contemporary American Sculpture in conversation with other works of its time in Gallery 262.

Chair (1908) by Lars Kinsarvik

Lars Kinsarvik

Signed and dated just three years after Norway gained independence from Sweden, this chair by Lars Kinsarvik is an emblem of Norwegian cultural pride, recalling medieval carvings and Norse mythology, with dragons, kings, trolls, and wolves set among interlacing scrolls and tendrils. Kinsarvik promoted this Norwegian nationalist style, called Viking Revival, at his woodcarving school on the Sunnmøre fjord, where he trained an entire generation of young carvers. His carvings, prominently displayed at world’s fairs and at hotels serving the nation’s burgeoning tourism industry, helped establish Norway on the international scene. 

See this prime example of his work on view now in Gallery 246.

Dutch Mannerist Prints (1530s–about 1650)

Hendrick Goltzius

This incomparable collection of nearly 1,500 works from the Hearn Family Foundation and the collection of Charles Hack charts the history of Dutch printmaking at the period of its greatest technical and artistic sophistication. At the core of the collection is the work of Hendrick Goltzius, the most significant 16th-century Dutch artist, recognized as one of the premier draftsmen/printmakers of his age. It also contains works by a generation of artists who either trained with Goltzius or tried to measure up to his formidable example, including his pupils Jacob Matham, Jacques de Gheyn, Jan Saenredam, and Jan Muller. Together, the newly acquired works reveal the complexity and sophistication of Mannerist art, including a virtuosic command of printmaking, unusual perspectives and proportions, and eroticism coupled with a delight in allegory and humanism. 

Selections from the collection can be found in galleries 212 and 213. A large exhibition and publication celebrating these works are tentatively scheduled for 2027.

Lakota Honor—Sees the Horses Woman—SuWakan Ayutan Win (2011–23) by Rhonda Holy Bear

Rhonda Holy Bear

Lakota artist Rhonda Holy Bear sculpts characters whose narratives can be symbolically read through the many miniature objects she creates for them. This intricate work, inspired by the artist’s grandmother, Josephine Sees the Horses Woman, reimagines her as the proud wife of a courageous warrior killed in battle. To memorialize her husband, she wears his male-gendered regalia, including an extraordinary wapaha, or war bonnet, of eagle feathers, and carries his possessions—a stone war club, quilted bag, and red catlinite pipe. Sees the Horses Woman’s own accomplishments as a woman, wife, and mother are also shown through her belt of honors containing a knife sheath, awl case, hide scraper, and strike-a-light case. The sculpture displays some 32 different forms of Lakota art making, including beading, quillwork, hide tanning, feather work, wood carving, and metalwork.

See Lakota Honor on view now in Gallery 136.

Park City (1978–79) by Lewis Baltz

A black-and-white photograph shows a pile of windblown building materials on an open land lot, a smattering of homes behind it. Father back still are snow-capped mountains and a wide expanse of sky. There is little vegetation.

Lewis Baltz

Lewis Baltz decided to photograph Park City, Utah, in 1978, just as the sleepy town was being transformed into a resort of national and international importance. As he observed from the scale and pace of this transformation, the purpose seemed less to house bodies than to grab land and sell buildings. A series of 102 images, Park City has elements of a documentary film but also can be understood as the work of a rebel land surveyor. Built constructions recur modestly in its first images before coming increasingly to prominence as Baltz shifts for most of the final 40 images to details of houses in process. At the end of the series, instead of finished or inhabited dwellings we are shown a map stuck full of pins in four colors indicating each home’s status: for sale; under construction; under contract; and closed. Park City marks the first of Baltz’s multipart works to enter the collection, rounding out the museum’s wide-ranging holdings of his work.

Woman’s Necklace (20th century), Maasai; Kenya


The Maasai peoples of Kenya and Tanzania are known for their brightly colored and richly symbolic beadwork that indicates an individual’s age, status, or family position. Rare for its materials and particular style, this necklace, with its two circles signifying breasts and fertility, would have been made by a woman and worn by a woman during her childbearing years as a mark of pride and honor. Its use of leather symbolizes the significance of cattle and goats herds in the lives of the Maasai, and its Conus shells, rarely used in such necklaces today, represent a relationship to the Indian Ocean and regional trade routes. An example of high-quality Maasai beadwork from its time, the necklace makes a welcome addition to our holdings of art from East Africa. 

Look for it in Gallery 137 beginning in August.

Metaphysical Body II (2023) by Tanya Aguiñiga

Tanya Aguiñiga

Image courtesy of the artist and Volume Gallery. © 2023 Tanya Aguiñiga

Artist and activist Tanya Aguiñiga was born in the US and grew up in Tijuana, Mexico, commuting several hours a day to go to school in San Diego. She has explored the relative porosity of the Mexico/US border by experimenting with transporting materials in different states of being: unfired, raw clay is not allowed to cross the border, but when a raw material is labeled “art,” it can cross.

In Metaphysical Body II, Aguiñiga used terracotta clay to dye absorbent cotton, capturing not only the color of the earth but the actual soil of her ancestral home in Mexico. She also employed traditional textile-making techniques based on off-loom typologies including narrow plain weave, braiding, and knitting. The work is flexible, and the final installation is not dictated by the artist. This mutability fulfills the titular designation as metaphysical. It is fluid—perhaps a reflection of Aguiñiga’s hopes for less confrontation and more openness along the border between Mexico and the United States.

Posters (1963–94) by Edgardo Giménez

Edgardo Giménez

This selection of 31 posters and 28 duplicates by artist and designer Edgardo Giménez, a central figure of the Pop Art movement in Argentina in the 1960s, spans the course of the artist’s career and demonstrates his pioneering role in appropriating and elevating street advertisements.

Three posters from 1965 included in this collection, Dalila Puzzovio—La matabrujas de más calidad, Edgardo Giménez—En la duda: un enano, and Carlos Squirru—Produzca más, modifique su esqueleto, were designed as promotional material for the large-scale public installation ¿Por Qué Son Tan Geniales? (1968), which took the form of a billboard on the corner of a busy intersection in Buenos Aires. The billboard and its accompanying posters served the dual purpose of satirizing advertising culture while promoting the artists who created the installation. These works and others in the group evidence Giménez’s multidisciplinary approach to making—one encompassing art, design, and branding.

A selection of these posters will be on view when the redesigned galleries of Architecture and Design (283–285) open in late August.

Madonna and Child with Saints Elizabeth and John the Baptist (1530–35) by Jacopino del Conte

Jacopino del Conte

This extraordinary large-scale painting of the Madonna and Child with Elizabeth and John the Baptist is a newly discovered work by Jacopino del Conte, one of the most successful and long-lived artists working in the Mannerist style. Throughout his career in Florence and Rome, Jacopino used a vibrant, colorful palette in energetic compositions featuring monumental figures. Here, the artist placed biblical figures in a contemporary setting with recognizable elements of a domestic Florentine interior. Given the scarcity of 16th-century Italian artworks of this quality available on the market, this painting presented a unique opportunity to further broaden our world-class collection of European paintings. 

You can find it on view now in Gallery 205.

Statuette of Hercules Capturing the Ceryneian Hind (1st–2nd century), Roman

This statuette of Hercules depicts the hero completing the third of his 12 Labors, tasks he was assigned in order to atone for killing his family. Here, he is shown in the moment when he has finally, after an entire year of chasing, caught a mythical female deer known as the Ceryneian hind. While the statuette is missing its head, neck, and arms, as well as the captured deer, Hercules and his activity are easily identifiable from the hero’s unusual posture, in which he is commonly depicted: kneeling with his left knee (on the back of the deer) while his right leg is extended out to the side. This acquisition adds to the Art Institute’s holdings of small-scale Roman sculpture and allows the museum to share the extraordinary story of one of antiquity’s greatest heroes.

See the new marble sculpture in Gallery 154.

Sculptures (1957–81) by H. C. Westermann

H. C. Westermann

Impossible to corner into any one category, school, or movement, H. C. Westermann occupies a unique position in the history of postwar American art. This gift of 17 significant sculptures by the artist, who worked across mediums, displays a cross section of his varied styles and themes, many of which draw from his personal experiences in World War II and the Korean War. The works, which include Control (1968), The Big Change (1963), and Death Ship, Out of San Pedro, Adrift (1980), combine rigorous craftsmanship with a highly personal, deadpan surrealism that earned him the admiration of fellow artists, curators, and critics alike. Each of these 17 works offers a key example of the artist’s technical and thematic prowess, making this one of the most important bodies of Westermann’s works ever assembled.

Works from this gift are on view in the galleries on a rotating basis. Up now is The Big Change, in Gallery 289.

Mount Fuji and the Miho Pine Forest (1761 or 1762) by Soga Shōhaku

A composite image of two Japanese screens, each in black ink on neutral-colored paper. The first screen depicts Mount Fuji, recognizable by its conic shape, prominently at left. Clouds, mountains, and brush surround it. The second screen shows a rising plume of waters or vapors, or possibly wind, among a similar landscape, small trees visible among the craggy rocks and wetter lands.

Soga Shōhaku. Through prior gift of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel M. Nickerson

This pair of folding screens, titled Mount Fuji and the Miho Pine Forest, is by renowned Japanese painter Soga Shōhaku, revered for his unusual subjects and eccentric painting style. Here, Shōhaku uses almost entirely black ink to evocatively depict the landscape’s rocks, mountains, and trees—as well as the ephemeral, intangible wind, rain, and clouds. The screens are a rare, well-preserved example of the artist’s work and among the most important Japanese works of art to enter a US collection from Japan in decades.

The screens will be on view this summer in Gallery 109.

El Mago/Pim Pam Pum (The Magician/Pim Pam Pum) (1926) by Maruja Mallo

Maruja Mallo

Maruja Mallo (born Ana Maria Gómez González) was a pioneering painter who contributed to the development of Surrealism and Magic Realism in Spain. Raised in a remote town in Galicia, she moved to Madrid at the age of 18 and developed friendships with Salvador Dalí, Luis Buñuel, and Federico García Lorca, as well as others who became known as the “Generation of ’27.” 

A pivotal early painting, El Mago/Pim Pam Pum was inspired by the street culture of Madrid and established the tone and visual vocabulary of her “Verbenas” (1927–28), paintings of public celebrations that teem with energy and blend playful spectacle with social critique. It is the first work by the artist to enter a public collection in the United States and introduces an important female voice into the museum’s holdings of the interwar avant-garde in Europe, joining the work of Giorgio de Chirico, Salvador Dalí, Suzanne Duchamp, and Angel Planells.

Look for El Mago/Pim Pam Pum (The Magician/Pim Pam Pum) on view now in Gallery 396.



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