News | Published: Tue 25 May 2010

Prized Possessions: new display opening today puts focus on Museum Founder’s own print collection

Upon his death in 1816, Lord Fitzwilliam bequeathed his substantial art collection - including 198 print albums - to the University of Cambridge in an act that founded the Fitzwilliam Museum.

Prized Possessions: Lord Fitzwilliam's Album of Prints after Adam Elsheimer (25 May - 26 September) focuses upon one of those albums - an intriguing collection of prints derived from the paintings of German artist Adam Elsheimer (1578-1610). The second in the Museum's 'Hidden Depths' series casting light on lesser-known aspects of the collection, this display reveals the varied responses by printmakers captivated by Elsheimer's deployment of light and atmospheric rendering of nature.

Reconstructing the arrangement of the album, which was taken apart some time during the last century, this exhibition explores the allure of Elsheimer not only for printmakers, but for print collectors, in particular Lord Fitzwilliam (1745-1816) himself.

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