The Phillips Collection in Washington, D. C. is one of the world's most outstanding art collections. It was the first museum of modern art in the United States and today stands as a legacy to the uniquely enlightened connoisseurship of its founder and creator, Duncan Phillips. Phillips collected primarily work by French and American artists, and the collection's holdings include work by leading impressionist, post-impressionist, abstract and abstract expressionist artists, as well as works by earlier artists Phillips considered critical to the development of modern art. Art Beyond Isms accompanies a major travelling exhibition opening at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston this autumn and features just over 60 of the most important European works from the Phillips. These are mainly nineteenth- and twentieth-century French paintings - including Renoir's The Luncheon of the Boating Party - as well as five important paintings by Cezanne. Among the non-French artists van Gogh, Kokoscha, Klee and Modigliani are represented. Important proto-modern works by such artists as Constable, El Greco and Goya are also included.
Works are presented either individually, or in groups accompanied by succinct narrative entries giving key art historical and biographical information. An introduction by Jay Gates, Director of The Phillips Collection, and an essay on Duncan Phillips as a collector by Eliza Rathbone, Chief Curator, and a Chronology are also included.
Johanna Halford-Macleod is Director of Programming and Publications at The Phillips Collection Eliza Rathbone is Chief Curator of The Phillips Collection