A Love for the Beautiful: Discovering America's Hidden Art Museums

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Discover the hidden gems of America’s fine art museums

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Discover the hidden gems of America’s fine art museums

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“What a wonderful book this is for art lovers of every stripe—a guide to top-tier collections around the United States that are hiding in plain sight. From cowboy art to pre-Columbian, Boucher to Braque, it can all be found at the 50 lesser-known museums that star in A Love for the Beautiful. Susan Jaques’ lively guide will prompt hours of enjoyable browsing—as well as dreams of a cross-country art tour. I’ll start mine at the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden in New Orleans.” —Annalyn Swan, Pulitzer prize–winning coauthor of de Kooning: An American Master

“Susan Jaques has produced an informative, accessible guide to the fascinating mosaic of America’s art museums. Chock full of history, beautifully descriptive, and always engaging, this work will introduce art lovers (and art lovers to be) to many undiscovered riches.” —Dewey Blanton, director of Strategic Communications, American Association of Museums

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762779505
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 11/6/2012
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,399,195
  • Product dimensions: 7.80 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Susan Jaques, art and travel writer, crisscrossed the country in search of extraordinary museums for her debut book, A Love for the Beautiful: Discovering America’s Hidden Art Museums. With a background in journalism and training in art, Susan’s special passion is for unique art experiences that are off the beaten path. She’s a gallery docent at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Visit her website at susanjaques.com.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: African, Pre-Columbian & Oceanic Art

Dumbarton Oaks, Washington, DC

Indiana University Art Museum, Bloomington, Indiana

The Menil Collection, Houston, Texas

Chapter 2: American Art

The Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, Massachusetts

Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine

The Florence Griswold Museum, Old Lyme, Connecticut

The Portrait Gallery of the Second Bank of the United States, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Chapter 3: Ancient Art

The Michael C Carlos Museum, Atlanta, Georgia

The Oriental Institute Museum, Chicago, Illinois

The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland

Chapter 4: Asian Art

The Honolulu Museum of Art, Honolulu, Hawaii

The Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, California

The Rubin Museum of Art, New York, New York

Chapter 5: Contemporary Art

Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, Iowa

The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, Missouri

Telfair Museums, Savannah, Georgia

Chapter 6: Decorative Arts

Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, Houston, Texas

California Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco, California

The Shelburne Museum, Shelburne, Vermont

Chapter 7: Design & Craft

Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina

Museum of Glass, Tacoma, Washington

Racine Art Museum, Racine, Wisconsin

Wolfsonian–FIU, Miami Beach, Florida

Chapter 8: European Painting, Eighteenth to Twentieth Century

Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, Virginia

The Dixon Gallery and Gardens, Memphis, Tennessee

The McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas

Chapter 9: Medieval, Renaissance & Baroque Art

The Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin, Ohio

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, Florida

The Taft Museum of Art, Cincinnati, Ohio

The Timken Museum of Art, San Diego, California

Chapter 10: Modern Art

The Kreeger Museum, Washington, DC

Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, Georgia

Sheldon Museum of Art, Lincoln, Nebraska

Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Chapter 11: Native American & Western Art

Millicent Rogers Museum, Taos, New Mexico

New Mexico Museum of Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Whitney Gallery of Western Art, Cody, Wyoming

Chapter 12: Photography

George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film, Rochester, New York

The Monterey Museum of Art, Monterey, California

The Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, Illinois

Chapter 13: Sculpture

The Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden, New Orleans, Louisiana

The Cantor Arts Center, Palo Alto, California

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, Michigan

Chapter 14: Single-Artists

The Brandywine River Museum, Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania

The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park, Florida

The Clyfford Still Museum, Denver, Colorado

The Dali Museum, St Petersburg, Florida

Chapter 15: Spanish & Latin American Art

The Art Museum of the Americas, Washington, DC

The Hispanic Society of America, New York, New York

The Meadows Museum, Dallas, Texas

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 1, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    In this lavishly-illustrated (more than 250 full-color photograp

    In this lavishly-illustrated (more than 250 full-color photographs) guide, Jaques (Bachelor of Arts, History, Stanford University; Master of Business Administration, University of California at Los Angeles), a journalist specializing in art and travel and a gallery docent at The J. Paul Getty Museum, introduces readers to art collections in fifty lesser-known American museums.  Covering museums in thirty-one states with “geography” factoring into her selection process, the author showcases “diverse” museum collections that remain “hidden” or “under-the-radar” to many museum goers, even though they may be located on the “beaten path” or in “plain sight.” (p. xii)  Not known for their blockbuster exhibitions or encyclopedic holdings, these “unsung,” “largely unknown” museums constitute “collecting” museums that display “extraordinary” art from their permanent collections and “tend to be exceptional in specific areas.” (pp. xii-xiii)  They typically offer “unique” art-viewing experiences that are “genuine, intimate, and uncrowded.”  (p. xii)  Jaques organizes her book into fifteen chapters, each of which features three or four museums that have extraordinary collections in certain areas. She titles chapters:  African, Pre-Columbian & Oceanic Art; American Art; Ancient Art; Asian Art; Contemporary Art; Decorative Arts, Design & Craft; European Painting, Eighteenth to Twentieth Century; Medieval, Renaissance & Baroque Art; Modern Art; Native American & Western Art; Photography; Sculpture; Single-Artists; and Spanish & Latin American Art.  In each entry for a museum, Jaques describes the museum, its founder(s), buildings, collections, and history.  The author also sets forth each institution’s address, contact information, website, hours of operation, and admission fee(s) as well as briefly highlights a few of its “must see” pieces.  Of interest mostly to art lovers and travelers, this accessible, artfully- designed, engaging, informative, nicely- written, thoughtful, and well-presented publication by an experienced writer, traveler, and museum aficionado may be read from cover-to-cover and/or consulted by chapter and/or entry.  While Jaques’s selection criteria and classification scheme may seem too arbitrary, inexplicit, personal, subjective, and/or superimposed for some readers, this book nevertheless belongs in many public, academic, and special libraries.  It is recommended for individual readers as well as for library reference collections.--C. A. Lajos, Art History, Architecture, Decorative Arts, Museum, and Visual Studies Book Review Blog

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  • Posted December 4, 2012

    Such a fascinating and charming book!  This informative, delight

    Such a fascinating and charming book!  This informative, delightful read is for the art connoisseur AND for anyone who appreciates a quiet stroll through gallery space (this would be me).  
    Susan Jaques has selected a wonderful balance of unique small museums to entice your palette.  Imagine a cross country road trip (and, also Hawaii) taking in each of these gems along the way!

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