The Ashmolean Museum

Oxford Colleges and Museums:

Loans in North America

Pieces from the vast collections of Oxford Colleges, Libraries and Museums are often loaned to museums around the world. Here are some pieces you can see in North America. Please note that some loans are subject to change without notice, and that our office attempts to keep this information as accurate and up-to-date as possible.

WA1927.1 Francesco Guardi, A Night Procession in the Piazza San Marco, c. 1755. Image © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford.

Eyewitness Views: Making History

Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis, MN
10 September though 31 December 2017

The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
25 February 2018 through 20 May 2018

From Paris to Madrid and Vienna to London, from the Doge's Palace to St. Peter’s Square, Europe’s most iconic cities and monuments have played host to magnificent ceremonies. During the golden age of view painting in the eighteenth century, princes, popes, and ambassadors commissioned artists such as Canaletto and Panini to record memorable moments ranging from the Venetian carnival to an eruption of Vesuvius. This first-ever exhibition focusing on views of historic events includes more than fifty spectacular paintings—many never seen before in America—from an international array of lenders. Turning the beholder into an eyewitness on the scene, these works bring the spectacle and drama of the past to life.

One object from the Ashmolean Museum will be on display in this exhibition, Franceso Guardi's A Night Procession in the Piazza San Marco, shown above.



Evans Fresco Drawing G a, Fragment of paint relief of papyrus flower. Image © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford


Restoring the Minoans:
Elizabeth Price and Sir Arthur Evans


Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York City
5 October 2017 through 7 January 2018



Restoring the Minoans brings together artifacts from Minoan Crete, material from the Sir Arthur Evans Archives, and a work of contemporary video art by Turner Prize-winning artist Elizabeth Price to expand our understanding of Minoan civilization and the dynamics between discovery, restoration, and creation. 




Over forty pieces from the Ashmolean's collections will be included in this breathtaking exhibition alongside work by Turner Prize winner and Ruskin School graduate Elizabeth Price.

WA1846.61 Michelangelo Buonarroti, Ideal Head, c. 1520. Image © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford.


Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer


The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City
13 November 2017 through 12 February 2018


Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475–1564), a towering genius in the history of Western art, will be the subject of this once-in-a-lifetime exhibition. During his long life, Michelangelo was celebrated for the excellence of his disegno, the power of drawing and invention that provided the foundation for all the arts. For his mastery of drawing, design, sculpture, painting, and architecture, he was called Il Divino ("the divine one") by his contemporaries. His powerful imagery and dazzling technical virtuosity transported viewers and imbued all of his works with a staggering force that continues to enthrall us today.


This exhibition will present a stunning range and number of works by the artist: approximately 150 of his drawings, three of his marble sculptures, his earliest painting, his wood architectural model for a chapel vault, as well as a substantial body of complementary works by other artists for comparison and context. Among the extraordinary international loans are the complete series of masterpiece drawings he created for his friend Tommaso de' Cavalieri and a monumental cartoon for his last fresco in the Vatican Palace. Selected from 54 public and private collections in the United States and Europe, the exhibition will examine Michelangelo's rich legacy as a supreme draftsman and designer.




Twenty-six drawings by Michelangelo from the Ashmolean Print Room (including Ideal Head, c. 1520, pictured above), plus one painting from Campion Hall (attributed to Venusti) will be included in this breathtaking exhibition.

WA1881.348 George Jones, Interior of Turner’s Gallery: the Artist Showing his Works. Image © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford


Thomas Cole's Journey:
Atlantic Crossings


The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City
30 January 2018 through 13 May 2018



This exhibition will establish Thomas Cole as a major artist of the 19th century within a global context. The artist's most iconic works, including The Oxbow (1836) and his five-part series The Course of Empire (1834–36) will be presented for the first time as a direct outcome of his transatlantic career. Consummate works by J.M.W. Turner and John Constable, among others, will reveal Cole's engagement with European art, while masterworks by Asher B. Durand and Frederic E. Church will demonstrate Cole's extraordinary legacy in establishing a school of 19th-century landscape art in America.




One item from the Ashmolean's collection, George Jones, Interior of Turner’s Gallery: the Artist Showing his Works (pictured above), will be included in this exhibition.

WA2013.1.202 Mounted nautilus shell. Image © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford


The Paston Treasure:
Microcosm of the Known World


Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT
15 February 2018 through 27 May 2018


The seventeenth-century painting The Paston Treasure (ca. 1663) is an enigmatic masterpiece. It will make its North American debut at the Yale Center for British Art in an exhibition organized in partnership with the Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, UK. Gathering some of the depicted objects around the painting for the first time in nearly three centuries, the exhibition will trace the genesis and demise of the Paston family collection of treasures from the fifteenth to the early eighteenth centuries. It will explore the making and movement of precious objects, such as mounted nautilus shells between continental Europe and provincial England; and it will reconstruct the networks of artists, craftsmen, and natural philosophers surrounding the Paston family, who established what was perhaps the most extensive cabinets of curiosities ever to exist in England. Furthermore, technical analysis will reveal what lies beneath the physical surface of the painting, helping to understand how it was made and shedding light on who made it and why. The display will include 140 objects from more than fifty international institutions and private lenders.


The Paston Treasure: Microcosm of the Known World is curated by Andrew Moore, former Keeper of Art, and Senior Curator, Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, and the organizing curator at the Yale Center for British Art is Nathan Flis, Head of Exhibitions and Publications, and Assistant Curator of Seventeenth-Century Paintings. The co-organizing curator at the Center is Edward Town, Head of Collections Information and Access, and Assistant Curator of Early Modern Art. At the Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, the organizing curator is Francesca Vanke, Keeper of Art and Curator of Decorative Art. At the Center, the curatorial team is assisted by Jessica David, Associate Conservator of Paintings, and by Elisabeth Fairman and Sarah Welcome, Chief Curator and Assistant Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts. 



Several items from the Ashmolean's collection will be included in this exhibition, including Mounted nautilus shell, pictured above.

The North American Office team