Appleton Presents Rembrandt Exhibitions

The Appleton Museum of Art, College of Central Florida, will present two exhibitions of prints by Dutch draughtsman, painter and printmaker Rembrandt van Rijn Jan. 20-March 18: “Rembrandt and the Jews,” organized by the Westmont Ridley-Tree Museum of Art, Westmont College, and “Rembrandt Revealed: Etchings from the collection of Dr. Robert and Mrs. Mariann McClary.”

Rembrandt’s legacy as an etcher is characterized by the new and innovative techniques he introduced to printmaking. He broke with traditional depictions of biblical narratives and added emotional and psychological depth to his subjects through expressive faces, dramatic body language, and his bold use of shadow and light.

“Rembrandt and the Jews” features 22 Rembrandt etchings from the Westmont Ridley-Tree Museum of Art, Westmont College. The Santa Barbara, California-based museum received a gift of the etchings and a drawing by Pieter Lastman, Rembrandt’s teacher, from Dr. Howard Berger and Fran Berger.

The relationship Rembrandt had with the Jews of Amsterdam is a remarkable story. Most were Sephardic Jews ― refugees from the Inquisition in Spain and Portugal. For many generations these Jews had been forced to deny their religious legacy, but in Amsterdam they were free to reclaim traditions and return to their Judaism. Rembrandt lived in Amsterdam’s prosperous Jewish neighborhood. In Rembrandt’s interpretation of Protestant Old Testament narratives, Rembrandt consulted Jewish theologians for a nuanced perspective of these familiar subjects. He also painted and etched portraits of prominent Jews. “Rembrandt and the Jews” is sponsored in part by Phil and Charlotte Rosenberg.

Running concurrently is “Rembrandt Revealed: Etchings from the Collection of Dr. Robert and Mrs. Mariann McClary.” Featuring 10 prints, the work on view from the McClarys depicts Rembrandt’s world — inhabited by golfers, physicians, print-sellers and beggars.

Dr. McClary acknowledges that he didn’t know much about the art form back in the early 1990s when he noticed his first Rembrandt etching, “The Golfer,” at a gallery in Pebble Beach. “I knew who Rembrandt was, of course, and I was impressed that anybody could buy anything from his hand,” McClary recalls. Purchasing “The Golfer” piqued McClary’s interest enough to read about Rembrandt and his etchings, and the McClarys — who are Marion County residents — have been collecting ever since.

Exhibition Events:

Director’s Circle and VIP Reception

Friday, Jan. 19, 5-6 p.m.

The Appleton’s Director’s Circle members are invited for a special opening reception. RSVP required to Colleen Harper, or 352-291-4455, ext. 1831.

Inspired Speakers Series Exhibition Talk, Dr. Lisa DeBoer

Friday, Jan. 19, 6-7 p.m.

Join us for a talk on Rembrandt’s legacy and the inspiration for “Rembrandt and the Jews” by scholar and Rembrandt catalog essay author Dr. Lisa DeBoer. This event is free for Appleton members and $10 at the door for nonmembers. Tickets may be purchased in advance by calling Visitor Services, 352-291-4455.

Exhibition Talk, “Scratching the Surface: Rembrandt the Master Etcher”

Sunday, Feb. 4, 2 p.m.

Associate Professor and artist Tyrus Clutter will analyze the process of the etching medium within the exhibition and why Rembrandt’s mastery of the process has never been surpassed and continues to inspire artists and viewers to this day. This event is free for Appleton members; included with regular admission fee for nonmembers.

In addition to temporary exhibitions, the Appleton Museum of Art presents a permanent collection of European, American and contemporary art, plus Asian, African and pre-Columbian artifacts and antiquities.

Through January 2018, the main portion of the museum will not be available to visitors due to a heating and cooling equipment replacement project. The Edith-Marie Appleton Gallery, ARTSpace, art classrooms and a mini Appleton Store are open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, and closed every Monday. During this time, our regular admission fees will be replaced with a pay-what-you-wish donation option.

Owned and operated by the College of Central Florida, the Appleton Museum of Art is located at 4333 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, east of downtown on SR 40 (exit 352 east off I-75 or exit 268 west off I-95). Parking is free. For more information, call 352-291-4455 or visit