'Civil War Era Drawings from the Becker Collection' opens Sept. 10 at the Beach Museum of Art
Friday, Sept. 9, 2016
The firsthand drawing, "Siege of Petersburg, Virginia: A Night Attack," March 31, 1865, was drawn by Andrew McCallum. This drawing is in the Becker Collection in Boston, Massachusetts, and will be on view during the exhibition "Civil War Era Drawings from the Becker Collection" at the Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art. | Download this photo.
MANHATTAN — More than 80 drawings from the Becker Archive in Boston, Massachusetts, will travel to the Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art at Kansas State University for the exhibition "Civil War Era Drawings from the Becker Collection," on view Sept. 10-Dec.18.
The Becker Archive contains approximately 650 previously undocumented drawings by Joseph Becker and his colleagues, 19th-century artists who worked as artist-reporters for Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper. They observed, drew and sent back for publication images of the Civil War, the construction of the railroads, the Chicago fire and other important events of 19th-century American history. No major exhibition or scholarly survey featuring Civil War drawings has been conducted since the 1961 centennial, and at that time the Becker Collection had not yet come to light.
"Civil War Era Drawings from the Becker Collection" offers the first opportunity for scholars and enthusiasts to see selections from this important and previously unknown collection, and to appreciate these national treasures as artworks. More than 25 drawings from this traveling exhibition will be displayed at the U.S. Cavalry Museum at Fort Riley through a partnership that will also bring Civil War-related artifacts from the Cavalry Museum to the galleries of the Beach Museum of Art. Later interpretations of the Civil War by John Steuart Curry from the Beach Museum of Art collection will also be featured.
A public opening reception will be at 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9, at the Beach Museum of Art. Members of the Commanding General's Mounted Color Guard from Fort Riley will be in attendance and snacks and refreshments will be available.
A panel discussion will take place at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29, at the museum. Mike Hankins, doctoral candidate in history at K-State, will moderate a discussion of regional Civil War history with the following speakers: Joan Stack, curator of art collections at the State Historical Society of Missouri; Miller Williams Boyd, instructor in African-American studies, University of Mississippi; and Charles Sanders, associate professor of history, K-State.
"Civil War Era Drawings from the Becker Collection" is organized by Curatorial Assistance Traveling Exhibitions. Drawings from the Becker Collection premiered at the McMullen Museum at Boston College in the exhibition "First Hand: Civil War Era Drawings from the Becker Collection," which was organized by the McMullen Museum and underwritten by Boston College and Patrons of the McMullen Museum. This presentation of the exhibition is made possible by the Morgan and Mary Jarvis Wing Excellence Fund and The Ross and Marianna Kistler Beach Endowment for the Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art.
The Beach Museum of Art is on the southeast corner of the Kansas State University campus at the corner of Anderson Avenue and 14th Street. Admission is free. The museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday; and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Free parking is available adjacent to the building. For more information, call 785-532-7718 or visit beach.k-state.edu.