Culture Spotlight: Timken Museum of Art
Posted on March 10, 2016
Affectionately called San Diego’s “jewel box” of fine art, the Timken Museum of Art in Balboa Park was established in 1965, a collaborative effort of the Timken family from Canton, Ohio, and Anne and Amy Putnam, who arrived in San Diego in the early 1900s from Vermont. The Putnam sisters spent decades acquiring European old master paintings, later establishing the Putnam Foundation, which showcased these works. Later, with funding from the Timken family, a new museum — The Timken Museum of Art — was opened in which to house the collection.
Today, the museum not only hosts the unique works of art from old masters, as well as 19th century American art and Russian icons, but also offers exhibitions, live events, and outreach programs. Notable works in the permanent collection include Rembrandt’s Saint Bartholomew, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Parable of the Sower, John Singleton Copley’s Portrait of Mrs. Thomas Gage, Eastman Johnson’s classic The Cranberry Harvest: Island of Nantucket, and Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot’s View of Volterra.
To give back to the community, the Timken offers a wealth of educational programs for students and residents alike. Tall Tales at the Timken features professional storytellers, such as Harlynne Geisler, who share lively tales inspired by museum masterpieces. Free gallery talks are offered by leading curators, historians, scholars, and artists to help guests explore the collections and special exhibitions. Distinguished lecturers abound from the local, national, and international academic communities, offering exploration into topics related to Timken’s collection and special exhibitions. Music and film buffs will enjoy many of the museum’s live performances and screenings. Further, the museum hosts special day trips for members.
Recently, the Timken Museum of Art announced the expansion of an ongoing partnership with the University of San Diego. Through this enhancement, Derrick R. Cartwright, PhD, art history professor and director of University Galleries at University of San Diego, will oversee the museum’s curatorial program. Cartwright joins recently appointed Executive Director, Megan Pogue, a 12-year San Diego Symphony veteran, and newly elected Board President, recently-retired SDGE Chairman Jessie J. Knight, Jr. to round out the museum’s new leadership team.
There’s always something exciting going on at the museum. The next exhibition opens in April, entitled Archaeologist’s Eye: The Parthenon Drawings of Katherine A. Schwab, which combines art, history, and archaeology, providing a glimpse into a world once inhabited by the ancient Greeks. Guests can experience this and all the rest of the museum’s offering by purchasing tickets at the door, or by becoming a member, which includes exclusive privileges and invitations to member-only events, discounts, priority notice to special events and trips, and much more. 619.238.5548, timkenmuseum.org Ryan Thomas