A Harp Playing at the Crossroads: “Ireland 1690-1840” at the Art Institute of Chicago
Many of the recent major exhibitions at the Art Institute of Chicago have been retrospectives of individuals: Matisse, Lichtenstein, Picasso, Magritte. However, the current show takes a look at an epoch of an entire country. Ireland: Crossroads of Art and Design examines the aesthetic output of the Emerald Isle from 1690 to 1840. At first glance, this seems a strange choice, for Ireland is not historically important to art history as France, Italy, and Japan are, but a tour through the galleries reveals many unimagined delights and powerful statements.