Written by Nicole Gaudier, Curatorial Intern
The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens would like to present The Art of Empathy: The Cummer Mother of Sorrows in Context. This exhibition is designed to showcase a masterwork in The Cummer’s permanent collection, Mother of Sorrows (c.1470). It is one of only five known works by the anonymous Master of the Stötteritz Altarpiece, and was declared the “most important discovery in early German painting” by art historian Colin Eisler when it entered the collection in 1984.
The exhibition, curated by David S. Areford, Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Massachusetts Boston, will present new art historical and technical research that suggests that this work is a crucial link to the most important artists of Nuremberg especially Hans Pleydenwurff and Michael Wolgemut, the teacher of Albrecht Dürer, as well as the German painter and printmaker Martin Schongauer. It also aims to illuminate our understanding of the world of late medieval religious devotion, especially the cultivation of empathy.
The objects are arranged in two thematic sections: Hands, Hair, and Veil: Meaningful Details and Seeing and Weeping: Passion and Compassion.
Hands, Hair, and Veil: Meaningful Details section elaborates on the cultural and religious meanings of these details in relation to the cult of relics and various devotional practices.
Seeing and Weeping: Passion and Compassion section explores images and texts designed to elicit an empathetic response to Christ’s Passion and the emotional suffering of his mother Mary.
This exhibition will be held in the Millner Gallery from November 26, 2013 to February 16, 2014.