Some of the biggest names in European painting — Rembrandt, Rubens and Dyck — will be the stars of the 2013-14 season at Orlando Museum of Art. The museum, which will celebrate its 90th anniversary in 2014, also plans to introduce a new annual prize to a Florida artist, continue its Art of the Picture Book series and give visitors a peek into the private collections of local residents.
The European art exhibit comes from the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Ky. Titled "Rembrandt, Rubens, Gainsborough and the Golden Age of Painting in Europe," it will open at the end of January.
The exhibition will feature 71 paintings from 1600-1800 by Rembrandt van Rijn, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony Van Dyck, Jan Steen, Jacob van Ruisdael, William Hogarth, Thomas Gainsborough and Pompeo Batoni, among many others.
Comprised of the major genres of painting that were popular at that time — portraits, religious paintings, landscapes, scenes of everyday life, still lifes and interpretations of classical antiquity — this exhibition will illustrate both the people and the objects that made the two centuries such a rich cultural age.
Highlighting work from Italy, France, Spain, Flanders, the Netherlands, Germany and England, the "Golden Age" exhibition will illustrate how the tremendous changes in religion and science, coupled with the economic growth that swept Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, gave way to a period of incredible artistic creation.
In the summer of 2014, an exhibition of work by the winner of the first Florida Prize is scheduled to debut. Planned as an annual art award, The Florida Prize will be presented by the Orlando Museum of Art to an outstanding contemporary Florida artist. Artists will be selected from nominations submitted by museum directors, curators, fellow artists and scholars around the state, as well as studio visits by the museum's curatorial staff.
The Orlando Museum of Art is at 2416 N. Mills Ave., Orlando. Hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, noon-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Admission is $5-$8. More information: 407-896-4231 or http://www.omart.org
Here's a chronological look at the 2013-14 season at the Orlando Museum of Art:
• New Work: A Series of Bimonthly Exhibitions of Contemporary Art, ongoing. A series featuring digital photography, video, painting and site-specific installations. Nate Larson & Marni Shindelman, multimedia, through Sept. 1; Roberto Bocci, multimedia, Sept. 5-Nov. 3; Joelle Dietrick, time-based art, Dec. 5-Feb. 9; Isabel Manalo, mixed media, March 6-April 27; Avi Gupta, photography, May 1-June 29.
• Contemporary American Graphics Collection, July 13-Sept. 1: More than 130 limited edition lithographs, etchings, silk-screen prints and woodcuts from the Orlando Museum of Art's Permanent Collection. Most are no longer available for purchase in the art market. More than 100 of America's most renowned artists, including Katherine , Lesley Dill, Jim Dine, Mary Heilmann, Alex Katz, James Rosenquist, Edward Ruscha and other American masters will be showcased.
• A Passion for Collecting: Art and Decorative Works from Central Florida Collections, Aug. 17-Oct. 27. This will be the first exhibition organized by the Orlando Museum of Art to present art and decorative works selected from outstanding collections in Central Florida. Decorative works will include a variety of ceramics, silver, textiles and furniture from Europe, the United States, China and Japan.
• Tall Tales and Huge Hearts: Raúl Colón, Aug. 24-Nov. 3. This exhibition, the ninth in the Orlando Museum of Art's annual Art of the Picture Book Series, will feature the work of Raúl Colón. Known for his lush illustrations in watercolor and colored pencil, Colón created the art for books such as "My Mama Had A Dancing Heart" by Libba Moore Gray and "José! Born to Dance: The Story of José Limon" by Susanna Reich, among others.
• 27th annual Festival of Trees, Nov. 16-24: Christmas-themed display and events.
• Rembrandt, Rubens, Gainsborough and the Golden Age of Painting in Europe, Jan. 25-May 25, 2014.
• 32nd annual Antiques Vintage and Garden Show, Feb. 14-16. Weekend of antiques and collectibles.
• The Florida Prize, June 5-Aug. 31.
• Continuing exhibits from the permanent collection include: landscapes, American portraits, abstract art, "African Art of Everyday Life," "Aztec to Zapotec: Selections from the Ancient Americas Collection" and outdoor contemporary sculpture.