On October 25, 2010, the new Bellarmine Museum of Art opened its doors to students, faculty, and members of the University community. Located in the newly renovated basement of the Bellarmine Mansion, the Museum permanently houses some of the University’s growing art collection as well as functions as an inspiring venue for temporary exhibitions. Pieces currently on display include donations and loans from the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Department of Medieval Art, The Cloisters, and the Acropolis Museum in Athens. The gifts and loans that these and other institutions have made to the Museum have enhanced its core permanent collection, and stand side by side in the intimate museum space.
The museum has a clear mission statement:
“…The Bellarmine Museum is dedicated to preserving, studying, and exhibiting those objects entrusted to its care, while never losing sight of its obligation to educate and inspire its many audiences, for the greater enrichment of all.”
Thus far it has held up to its expectations; in the weeks since the trustees inaugurated the space on October 7, 1,200 visitors have come to stroll through the displays and enjoy all that the Museum has to offer, including 10 paintings from the Italian Renaissance and Baroque periods, the University’s collection of plaster casts after exemplary works from ancient Rome and Greece, and 19th-century South East Asian sculptures and African masks. Students, faculty, and members of the community alike regularly come to view the space, and the Museum has already become a teaching tool for many arts and history classes.
Stepping into the Bellarmine Museum, you are immediately overcome with a hushed awe from the breadth and diversity of artwork on display. Whether you enjoy taking in the minute details of one of the centuries-old paintings or appreciate the sheer size and complexity of a sculpture, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
As a student I am excited to continue visiting the space as my years here at Fairfield University progress. It is thrilling to be given access to such a wonderful and enriching collection of artwork right here, in my home away from home.
For more information regarding the Museum, please visit the website or contact Jill Deupi, J.D., Ph.D., Director of Fairfield University’s Bellarmine Museum of Art and Assistant Professor of Art History in Fairfield’s Department of Visual and Performing Art at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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