Clouds, Ice, and Bounty: The Lee and Juliet Folger Fund Collection of Seventeenth-Century Dutch and Flemish Paintings
Arthur K. Wheelock Jr.
For more than two decades, Lee and Juliet Folger have worked closely with the National Gallery of Art to acquire exceptional seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish paintings. Clouds, Ice, and Bounty honors this remarkable group of paintings and the collaborative relationship that has brought them into the nation’s collection. To date, twenty-five works (including one British painting) have been purchased for the Gallery by the Lee and Juliet Folger Fund. The same fund also enabled the construction of the Dutch and Flemish Cabinet Galleries. These intimate spaces, nestled among the grand galleries of the West Building of the National Gallery of Art, encourage quiet contemplation of the sort of masterful, small-scale works to which the Folgers are drawn.
The Folger paintings highlight the everyday pleasures of the Low Countries in the seventeenth century, a period of relative peace, prosperity, optimism, and reflection. An array of still lifes envelops the senses with enticing foods, lush blossoms, and impossibly fragile insects. Landscapes and seascapes explore the Netherlandish lowlands and waterways, recording minute shifts in color and terrain as land and water spread out beneath towering skies. Genre scenes capture the fashion, pastimes, and personalities of the period.
All twenty-five paintings donated to the Gallery by the Lee and Juliet Folger Fund are reproduced and discussed in this book. Luxurious illustrations allow close examination of the many charming details and expansive vistas found in the Folger paintings. Catalog entries consider composition and technique as well as the broader historical context and meaning of each work. An introductory essay by Arthur K. Wheelock Jr. tells the story of Lee and Juliet Folger’s connection to the Gallery and their thoughtful collecting practice. A volume as exquisite as the art it celebrates, this book contains a treasure trove of Dutch and Flemish seventeenth-century painting.
172 pages | 81 illustrations | 9.25 × 10.75 inches
Coming Fall 2021