The Museum of Biblical Art (MOBIA) is celebrating their tenth anniversary season in grand style. They have brought us an exceptional exhibit of early Florentine Renaissance sculptures that have rarely been seen outside Italy. Sculpture in the Age of Donatello is an exhibit of twenty-three pieces by Donatello, Brunelleschi, Nanni di Banco and Luca delia Robbia (and others), created in the early 15th century.
The Duomo (cathedral) of Florence contains many of these original works of art created for the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo. In fact, much of Donatello’s work was created for this Duomo. The Cathedral is currently undergoing renovation, giving way for these precious pieces to cross the Atlantic and be shown solely at MOBIA. They will return home to the Museum of Florence in time for their reopening this Fall.
From L-R: Nanni di Banco Saint Luke c.1408 Donatello St. John the Evangelist C. 1409-1411
MOBIA has put together an extensive programming schedule related to this exhibit. Public Lectures by renowned scholars and curators, Symposia offering insights into the current exhibition, and courses for young professionals.
The exhibit is made up of objects made for the same location by artists who knew each other
The Museum is also offering In-Gallery Programs around thematic topics such as techniques, materials and museum instillation. Many of the programs are free and open to the public, but require reservations, as space is limited.
Two Brunelleschi wood models on display
Later this month, a Donatello Open Night on Friday, May 29th from 6pm to 8:30pm will provide after-hours access to the exhibition and include a range of programs including lectures and gallery talks, sketching and music including brief performances by Sonnambula Viol Consort.
Twenty-three pieces of early Florentine Renaissance sculpture make up the exhibit
The Museum of Biblical Art began as a gallery in 1997 under the auspices of the American Bible Society, and opened in the ABS building as a gallery in 1998. MOBIA opened to the public as an independent art museum in 2005, continuing to reside on the second floor of the ABS Headquarters building where they were founded and have remained to this day.
Mobia will be closing their doors at the end of this exhibit
The MOBIA blog is curated by its staff, and it touches on related topics Worldwide as well as close to home. A current post is on the Museum at Eldridge Street. They also have a Facebook Page. This exhibit is not only a celebration of MOBIA’s tenth anniversary, but also a farewell of sorts, since the building they occupy has been sold.
The American Bible Society translates disseminates the Bible around the World
The American Bible Society has been at this Broadway location since 1966, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by Billy Graham. They sold the building for $300 million and will be relocating to Philadelphia. The building will be demolished by the new owners to make way for a luxury residential tower.
Founded in 1816, the American Bible Society sold their Headquarters on Broadway
1865 Broadway will be demolished to make way for a luxury residential tower
Sculpture in the Age of Donatello: Renaissance Masterpieces from Florence Cathedral will be at the Museum of Biblical Art, 1865 Broadway at East 61st Street through June 14th, after which time the Museum will close its doors for good. Open Tuesday through Sunday with a General Admission of $12. Discounts for Students and Seniors.
Get in touch with the author on her website, AFineLyne.