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Reinvention: The Art and Life Of HM Rosenberg Opens

Reinvention: The Art and Life of HM Rosenberg opens at the AGNS

January 26, 2012 – HALIFAX, NS – A fascinating exhibition of beautiful and luminous paintings gives remarkable insights into the Art and Life of American artist and perpetual immigrant, Henry Mortikar Rosenberg.

Reinvention: The Art and Life of HM Rosenberg opens at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia on January 28 and runs to June 10, 2012. It brings together over 120 exquisite works including paintings, prints, and drawings drawn from the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia’s Permanent Collection, a variety of private collections, the Mobile Museum of Art in Mobile, Alabama, the National Gallery of Canada and locally from the Collections of the Dartmouth Heritage Museum, the Nova Scotia Museum and the New Brunswick Museum.

Internationally acclaimed in his day, HM Rosenberg (1858-1947) was seen as a radical artist who defied the rules of categorization and always followed his own personal muse. During his career, HM Rosenberg found much of his inspiration with Duveneck in Munich, with Whistler and Sargent in Venice, and with Gauguin in Pont-Aven, France. He came to Nova Scotia in 1896 and, in 1898, became Principal of the Victoria School of Art and Design (now known as NSCAD University), where he remained Principal for 12 years. Reinvention: The Art and Life of HM Rosenberg reflects the artist’s remarkable breadth of approach by including examples from every period of his practice including many hidden treasures full of light, beauty and power. This exhibition shines a light on Rosenberg’s place in art history, re-introducing to today’s audiences - an artist who was a household name to Nova Scotians of his day.

Ray Cronin, Director and CEO of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia says:

“We’ve chosen the 125th anniversary year of NSCAD University’s founding to mount an exhibition of one of its earliest pioneers. We are thrilled that he is one whose art has played such a prominent role in our Permanent Collection over the years. With this exhibition, the AGNS is also making the case that his is a modernism that deserves recognition regionally, nationally and internationally.”

Reinvention: The Art and Life of HM Rosenberg is curated by Mora Dianne O’Neill, Associate Curator of Historical Prints and Drawings at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. The exhibition is also accompanied by a fully illustrated 120-page catalogue on the life and work of HM Rosenberg.


For information contact: Donna Wellard | Marketing and Communications | Art Gallery of Nova Scotia | Phone 902-424-2903 | Cell 902-483-2019 | gov.ns.ca
Images from HM Rosenberg are available upon request.

Notes for Editors

About HM Rosenberg

HM Rosenberg was born on February 28, 1858 in New Brunswick, New Jersey the second of six children born to immigrant parents of Polish descent. His family moved to Chicago in 1872 where he began his art studies. Accepted into the Royal Academy in Munich, Germany, in 1877, Rosenberg continued his studies with Frank Duveneck in Munich, Florence and Venice. In Italy, the “Duveneck boys” were closely associated with James MacNeill Whistler and John Singer Sargent. He was staying at the Pension Gloanec in Pont-Aven in 1886 when Paul Gauguin arrived on the first of his transforming visits. Rosenberg returned to America in late 1886 spending time in Chicago and New York. With prospects dim in New York during the great depression of the 1890s, Rosenberg moved to Halifax in 1896 and in 1898 he became Principal of the Victoria School of Art and Design, now known as NSCAD University. He remained Principal for 12 years and had a significant impact on the evolution of fine art in the city, the province and indeed the entire region during that time and after. He married Emily Scarfe, the heiress daughter of a former Dartmouth mayor in 1909. Because she did not want her husband to work for a salary, Rosenberg resigned his position at the School. Following a round the world cruise the couple settled into Edgemere, a house above Sullivan’s Pond in Dartmouth, where Rosenberg continued to paint and travel. Rosenberg lived in Halifax for four decades; however, from 1915 on, he also became a winter resident of Citronelle, Alabama. He moved to Citronelle permanently for the last decade of his life and died there on December 23, 1947. He bequeathed the contents of his studio in trust for a Museum or Art Institute to be built in Mobile, Alabama. In 1964, the 342 works in the Rosenberg Collection became the first acquisitions of the newly established Mobile Museum of Art.

Open to Public: Reinvention: The Art and Life of HM Rosenberg will be on view in the Manning Gallery and the Oyler Gallery from Saturday January 28 to Sunday June 10th. Hours to the end of April are - 10am to 5pm Tuesday to Sunday and Thursdays until 9pm. May onwards - 10am to 5pm Monday to Sunday and Thursdays until 9pm. Admission is $12 full price; $10 senior; $7 student; Youth $5; AGNS Members and children under 5 free. Admission is by donation every Thursday 5-9pm.

About the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia is the largest art museum in Atlantic Canada. With locations in downtown Halifax and downtown Yarmouth, the Gallery houses the Province’s art collection and offers a range of exhibitions and programming. For information: www.artgalleryofnovascotia.ca



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