Thursday, November 27, 2014

Research: Worcester Art Museum "Then and Now" by Travis Simpkins. Update #25

     -The first photo, from 1920, shows the area that would eventually become the Jeppson Gallery at the Worcester Art Museum. At the time, it was more of an alcove on the third floor landing. The photo was taken from what was once a small balcony room above the lower third floor galleries, looking straight across the stairwell. At some point, many years ago (probably when the fourth floor was added), a wall was erected to enclose the space... leading up to it's present use as the Jeppson Idea Lab.
     -The second "Then and Now" composition contrasts the Renaissance Court in the early 1980's and at present. Notable elements from the 1982 photo include a variety of Flemish tapestries hanging from the balcony walls, the lack of a border and railing around the Antioch Hunt mosaic and how dark the floor was with heavy applications of wax. The lighting in the older photo is much more stark as well, with artificial illumination, as natural light was not reintroduced to the space until 2001.

     -The sketch depicts the Ancient Greek marble Grave Stele of an old man, crafted in Athens during the 4th Century B.C., and seen at left in situ in the Renaissance Court photos.

     -When the Renaissance Court was constructed in the early 1930's, it was equipped with many practical amenities, including a Central Vacuum system. The round hinged-outlets, scattered around the area, are remnants of that old system.

Third Floor. Worcester Art Museum. by Travis Simpkins

Renaissance Court. Worcester Art Museum. by Travis Simpkins

Old Man. Worcester Art Museum. by Travis Simpkins

Central Vac System. Worcester Art Museum, 1930's