Seven Must-See New Museum Exhibits to Marvel at This Winter

From fancy lights to Wes Anderson aesthetics, these new exhibits explore artists, history and fun

A view of the Spitzmaus exhibit. (Courtesy of the Kunsthistorisches Museum)
smithsonian.com

With a new season comes a new slate of museum exhibits designed to inspire, teach and delight visitors. Whether it’s a light display showing a museum campus in a new way, an anniversary celebrated through art and photographs or a collection devised by a legendary filmmaker, these seven exhibits are must-sees for this winter.

Winterlights; Newfields; Indianapolis, Indiana
Now through January 6, 2019

Winterlights brings a sparkling glow to Newfields and the grounds of the Indianapolis Art Museum. (Visit Indy)
Winterlights brings a sparkling glow to Newfields and the grounds of the Indianapolis Art Museum. (Visit Indy)
Winterlights brings a sparkling glow to Newfields and the grounds of the Indianapolis Art Museum. (Visit Indy)
Winterlights brings a sparkling glow to Newfields and the grounds of the Indianapolis Art Museum. (Visit Indy)
Winterlights brings a sparkling glow to Newfields and the grounds of the Indianapolis Art Museum. (Visit Indy)

Winterlights, the curated outdoor lighting spectacular, is back at Newfields in Indianapolis for a second year—but this time with a few additions. More than 1.5 million lights twinkle around guests this year, with a new Wintermarket and an updated and redesigned finale show. At last year’s inaugural edition, it's said that at least 46 people proposed to their significant others. Inside the Lilly Mansion on the Newfields property, guests will be treated to displays with hundreds of LED candles and origami butterflies. The new finale on the walk-through includes a digital snowstorm and an ice cave.

Museo del Prado 1819-2019. A Place of Recollection; Museo Nacional del Prado; Madrid, Spain
Now through March 10, 2019

María Isabel de Braganza, López Piquer. (Courtesy of the Prado)

In 2019, Spain’s famed Prado museum is celebrating 200 years since its founding. In total, the exhibit, titled A Place of Recollection, will feature 168 art pieces, plus a large number of additional documents, photos, maps and audiovisual installations. The show will not only look at the past two centuries of art and installations in the museum, but it will also explore the ways in which the museum has interacted with Spain and society at large. The layout will be broken into eight different periods of the museum’s history, spread throughout Halls A and B. Featured artists on display include Renoir, Manet, Chase, Sargent, Arikha, Pollock, Rosales, Saura and Picasso.

Spitzmaus Mummy in a Coffin and Other Treasures; Kunsthistorisches Museum; Vienna, Austria
Now through April 28, 2019

A view of the Spitzmaus exhibit. (Courtesy of the Kunsthistorisches Museum)
A view of the Spitzmaus exhibit. (Courtesy of the Kunsthistorisches Museum)
A view of the Spitzmaus exhibit. (Courtesy of the Kunsthistorisches Museum)
Wes Anderson and Juman Malouf at the exhibit. (Rafaela Proell)

Filmmaker Wes Anderson and his partner, writer and illustrator Juman Malouf, have teamed up again for something a bit less cinematic than their usual, but no less impressive. The two have curated the art installation Spitzmaus Mummy in a Coffin and Other Treasures at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. The exhibit includes 400 pieces that Anderson and Malouf selected from the overall collection at the museum, the majority of which they pulled out of storage just for the show. In fact, many of the items will be on display for the first time in the museum’s history. Among the treasured pieces in the exhibit are an ancient Egyptian ceramic bead necklace and an Indonesian carved wooden monkey.

Magritte & Dali; The Dali Museum; St. Petersburg, Florida
December 15, 2018, to May 19, 2019

Rene Magritte [1898-1967] La Magie noire [Black Magic]. 1945 Oil on canvas, 79 x 59 cm; Inv. 10706. Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels 2018. C. Herscovici I Artists Rights Society [ARSI]. New York (Banque d'lmages, ADAGP / Art Resource, NY)
Rene Magritte [1898-1967] L'ile au tresor (Treasure lsland). 1942 Oil on canvas, 60 x 80 cm; Inv. 10708 Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels 2018 C. Herscovic1 I Artists Rights Society IARSI. New York (Herscovici / Art Resource, NY)
Rene Magritte (1898-1967] Dieu n·est pas un samt (God Is No Saint]. ca. 1935-36 Oil on canvas, 67.2 x 43 cm. Inv. 11681 Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels 2018 C. Herscovic1 I Artists Rights Society (ARS]. New York (Banque d'lmages, ADAGP / Art Resource, NY)
Salvador Dali. Old Age, Adolescence, Infancy (The Three Ages), 1940, Oil on canvas. Collection of The Dali Museum, St. Petersburg, FL [USA 2018 ©Salvador Dali, Fundaci6 Gala­ Salvador Dali, [Artists Rights Society]. 2018. (Salvador Dali Museum)
Salvador Dali. Portrait of Gala, c.1932, Oil on panel. Collection of The Dali Museum, St. Petersburg, FL [USA! 2018 ©Salvador Dali, Fundaci6 Gala-Salvador Dali, (Artists Rights Society}. 2018. (Salvador Dali Museum)

It’s a festival of surrealism at the Magritte & Dali exhibit in Florida’s Dali Museum. The exhibit draws together the two great minds, showcasing their work from the 1920s to the 1940s—the decades during which the two spent a great deal of time together and often displayed their work at the same exhibitions. This is the first exhibit of its kind to highlight the works of the two Surrealists, and to examine the shared themes in their paintings. Some of the Magritte pieces on display include Le Baiser [The Kiss] (1938), La Magie noire [Black Magic] (1945) and Dieu n’est pas un saint [God Is No Saint] (ca. 1935-36).

Gods in My Home: Chinese New Year with Ancestor Portraits and Deity Prints; Royal Ontario Museum; Toronto, Canada
January 26, 2019, to September 15, 2019

Unidentified artist Ancestor Portrait of a Couple 祖先像(夫婦) Qing dynasty, 1644–1911 Hanging scroll, ink and colour on paper 138.4 × 77.5 cm ROM, 2018.46.1 (Royal Ontario Museum)
Portable Shrine for Housing Spirit Tablets 祠堂 Late 18th – early 19th century Shanxi 山西 Painted and gilded wood 115 × 95 × 60 cm ROM, 2009.72.1 (Royal Ontario Museum)
Unidentified artist Ancestor Portrait of an Elderly woman 祖先像 Qing dynasty, 1644–1911 Hanging scroll, ink and colour on silk 172.5 × 96.5 cm ROM, 921.1.139 (Royal Ontario Museum)
The Dragon King God 龍王之神 19th–mid 20th Century Woodblock print, ink and colour on paper 31 × 27.9 cm Beijing, 北京 ROM, 969.168.56 (Royal Ontario Museum)
Enjoy Music/Happiness Together 同樂會 Republic of China,1912–1949 Woodblock print, ink and colour on paper 53.0 × 29.6 cm, each Yangliuqing, Tianjin 天津楊柳青 ROM, a: 969.168.32, b: 969.168.33 (Royal Ontario Museum)
Unidentified artist Zhong Kui (Demon Queller) 鐘馗 19th–mid 20th Century Hanging scroll, ink and colour on paper 220 × 106.5 cm ROM, 921.32.23 (Royal Ontario Museum)
Military Door Gods with Battle-axes 立斧門神 19th–mid 20th Century Woodblock print and hand drawing 65.0 × 41.0 cm, each Yangwanfa 楊萬發, Liangping, Chongqing重慶梁平 ROM, a: 995.160.11.2, b: 995.160.12.1 (Royal Ontario Museum)
Lady Mouse’s Wedding 老鼠嫁女 19th–mid 20th Century Woodblock print, ink and colour on paper 52.5 × 34.2 cm Jiajiang, Sichuan 四川夾江 ROM, 969.168.22 (Royal Ontario Museum)

Celebrate the Chinese New Year in 2019 by exploring Gods in My Home, an exhibit of rare ancestral portraits and traditional prints honoring the occasion. The majority of the pieces in the exhibit have never been on display before; there are more than 100 items, dating back to the late Imperial period, that all speak to the customs and beliefs of Chinese culture. Nine large ancestral portraits that were commissioned by wealthy families are complemented by a selection of printed ancestral scrolls, something a not-so-well-off family could have afforded. For the traditional prints, these were often pasted onto walls and doors to ward off evil spirits and bless the home.

Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing; Bristol Museum and Art Gallery; Bristol, England
February 1, 2019, to May 6, 2019

The Bristol Museum and Art Gallery. (Creative Commons)
An image from the da Vinci exhibit. (Bristol Museum and Art Gallery)

Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing honors the artist for the 500th anniversary of his death at the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery. The showing is part of a larger exhibit across 12 venues throughout the United Kingdom, featuring a total of 144 da Vinci drawings. The Bristol Museum will have 12 of the drawings (as will each of the other venues), all specially picked to show the breadth of da Vinci’s career. The works have been selected to showcase da Vinci's wide-ranging interests and include painting and sculpture sketches, scientific drawings and engineering diagrams. The drawings on display all come from the Royal Collection Trust.

The Young Picasso – Blue and Rose Periods; Fondation Beyeler; Basel, Switzerland
February 3, 2019, to May 26, 2019

PABLO PICASSO, ACROBATE ET JEUNE ARLEQUIN, 1905 Gouache on cardboard, 105 x 76 cm Private collection (Succession Picasso / 2018, ProLitteris, Zurich)
PABLO PICASSO, FAMILLE DE SALTIMBANQUES AVEC UN SINGE, 1905 Gouache, watercolour and ink on cardboard, 104 x 75 cm Göteborg Konstmuseum, Purchase, 1922 Succession Picasso / 2018, ProLitteris, Zurich (Göteborg Konstmuseum)
PABLO PICASSO, AUTOPORTRAIT, 1901 Oil on canvas, 81 x 60 cm Musée national Picasso – Paris Succession Picasso / 2018, ProLitteris, Zurich (RMN-Grand Palais (Musée national Picasso-Paris) / Mathieu Rabeau)
PABLO PICASSO, LA VIE, 1903 Oil on canvas, 197 x 127.3 cm The Cleveland Museum of Art, Donation Hanna Fund Succession Picasso / ProLitteris, Zurich 2018 (The Cleveland Museum of Art)

For the first time in Europe, paintings and sculptures from Picasso’s formative years—1901 to 1906, known as the Blue and Rose periods—will be displayed together in one place in The Young Picasso. The exhibit will be laid out chronologically and will focus on his work with human figures. The first part will be the Blue period, when shades of blue dominated his work, which mostly explored deprivation and suffering in the people around him. From there, the exhibit pivots to the Rose period, during which time he moved to Paris; these works focus on circus performers. The exhibit has about 80 paintings and sculptures on view.

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