Kimbell Art Museum — European Collection

Matisse L'Asie at the Kimbell Art Museum

Matisse L’Asie at the Kimbell Art Museum

Now is a wonderful time to visit the Kimbell Art Museum. There are no traveling exhibits to distract you from the Kimbell’s permanent collection.

European who’s who

My family and I spent a rainy afternoon touring Europe, or at least its art history. What the Kimbell lacks in quantity, it makes up for in the breadth of its European collection. From the birth of the Italian Renaissance with Fra Angelico’s painting of Saint James to the modernistic L’Asie of Henri Matisse, the Kimbell collection samples four hundred years of European art. Having recently completed an art history class, I have a new found appreciation of the museum. Name a key European artist, and you’re likely to find their work represented. There are Renaissance works by Donatello, Bellini, a young Michelangelo, and Titian. There is even a painting by the prolific Rembrandt (Bust of a Young Jew).

Rembrandt's Bust of a Young Jew at the Kimbell Art Museum

Rembrandt’s Bust of a Young Jew at the Kimbell Art Museum

It’s great fun to roam the three galleries in the Louis Kahn building and see such a wide range of works. There are portraits by Reynolds and Raeburn; Baroque paintings from Rubens; an amazing Turner (Glaucus and Scylla); and an entire range of pre- and post-Impressionists.

The gallery arrangement allows you to view the evolution of European artistic styles.

Guided tours

Guided tours of the museum’s permanent collection are offered Wednesdays at 2 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. Like many museums, you can download an app for your smart phone for your own audio guide of the museum’s works. Look at the placard for each piece of art for its ‘tour stop’ on the app.

Kimbell audio tours for adults and families

Kimbell audio tours for adults and families

You’ll find a three-digit number for the adult guide, and a two-digit number for the family description. Even if you are an adult, try the family tour – it gives you a more dynamic description of the artwork.

It’s all free.

Aside from visiting exhibitions, admission to the Kimbell is free. The museum provides programs for families such as its Pictures and Pages (storybooks with simple art projects for children ages 4 – 6); Kids Drop-in Studio (art project for children under 12); and Studio Five 90 (art for teens and adults). The programs are offered throughout the year – check the Kimbell Art Museum calendar for specific times and dates.

Dining at the Kimbell

My family always combines a trip to the Kimbell with a stop at the Buffet Restaurant. It is a wonderful place for lunch, uniquely offering a selection of soups, sandwiches, salads, quiche and dessert. You don’t have to pick just one item. Lunch is priced by plate size — small plates are $10 and large are $12. You can have soup, sandwich, quiche, and salad – all of it – the quantity is determined by your selected plate size.

When you go. The Kimbell is at 3333 Camp Bowie Blouvard, Fort Worth. The museum is closed Mondays. Onsite parking is free.

Tip. Download the Kimbell app before you go and don’t forget to bring your earphones.


Botticelli to Braque at the Kimbell Museum

You have just ten more days to see the spectacular exhibit, Botticelli to Braque, at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth.Botticelli to Braque

The exhibit is a mere 55 paintings – a traveling exhibit from the three National Galleries of Scotland. Doesn’t seem like much, until you go. From the Italian Renaissance to the Dutch masters and from English drawing rooms to art studios in Montmartre, these 55 paintings represent 400 years of European artists.

Sandro Botticelli’s “Virgin Adoring the Sleeping Christ Child” starts you on your journey through Europe. Further into the room you’ll find one of the largest surviving paintings by JohannesVermeer, “Christ in the House of Martha and Mary.” Next to the Vermeer is Rembrandt Van Rijin’s “Woman in Bed.”

If English pastoral scenes are more your cup of tea, there is the stunning “Vale of Debham” by John Constable. Scottish artists are included in the mix. My favorite is the poster child for the exhibit, Sir Henry Raeburn’s “Skating on Duddingston Loch.”

Claude Monet, Georges Seurat, and Edgar Degas represent the French Impressionists. I enjoyed the Degas. It wasn’t a ballet dancer, instead it was his portrait of art critic Diego Martelli. The exhibit also contains paintings from Paul Gauguin, Henri Matisse, and modern artists like Pablo Picasso.

Granted, the paintings within the Botticelli to Braque exhibit may not be the artists’ best-known work. Still, I’ve visited many a museum, and have never encountered such a magnificent sampling of so many fine artists.

When you go.

Botticelli to Braque closes on September 20. Tickets to the exhibit are $18 (free to Kimbell Museum members). Tickets to the exhibit are half-price on Tuesday and Friday after 5 p.m. Audio guides are $3. Entrance to the main Kimbell Museum is always free.

The Kimbell Art Museum is open Tuesday to Thursday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday, noon to 8 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.; and closed on Mondays. The museum is located at 3333 Camp Bowie Boulevard in Fort Worth. Parking is free in a lot across the street and in the new underground parking garage off Van Cliburn Way.

The museum’s Buffet Restaurant is a great place for lunch. It uniquely offers a selection of soups, salads, quiche, and dessert — the unique part — the cost is based on your plate size, not what you order.

The Kimbell and Dallas Museum of Art

Beat the summer heat with an outing to one of the area’s free art museums — the Kimbell in Fort Worth and Dallas Museum of Art in Dallas.

Kimbell Art Museum

The Kimbell is now better than ever. The Renzo Piano Pavilion, added in November 2013, allows the museum to organize and more fully display its permanent collection. If European art is your thing, then you’ll enjoy wandering the Louis Kahn building (the main building). The museum’s eclectic collection contains a smattering of works from European artists from Bernini (terra cotta angels) to Rembrandt (Bust of a Young Jew). And its European collection includes Impressionist masters like Sisley, Monet, and Manet.

North Texas Ramblings Kimbell Art Museum in Fort WorthThe Kimbell gives guided tours of its permanent collection Wednesdays at 2 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. Visiting families can obtain an audio guide tailored to children ages 7 – 12.

The museums Buffet Restaurant is a great place for lunch. It uniquely offers a selection of soups, salads, quiche and dessert — the unique part — the cost is based on the plate size. Small plates are $9.50 and large are $12.

Details: The Kimbell is at 3333 Camp Bowie Blouvard, Fort Worth. The museum is closed Mondays. Onsite parking is free.

Dallas Museum of Art (DMA)

The DMA houses an extensive collection of over 24,000 pieces of art. In the heart of the Dallas Arts District, the innovative museum offers visitors an eclectic art experience far beyond just gazing at masterpieces. The innovative Center for Creative Connections (C3) lets you experience art from different perspectives. And it’s in the C3 gallery that you can make and take home your own piece of art. DMA supplies the materials; you the creativity.

Embracing technology, DMA has several self-guided tours accessible via your smart phone and the DMA mobi site. If you don’t have a smart phone, you can borrow an iPod Touch from guest services to take the web-enabled tour.

Details: DMA is located at 1717 North Harwood in Dallas. The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., except on Thursdays (open until 9 p.m.). On the third Friday of each month, the museum offers special programming until midnight. Onsite parking is available for $10.