Gari Melchers: American Master 1860-1932

The name Gari Melchers once held true star power.  At the pinnacle of his career, Melchers occupied studios in Paris, Holland and New York, was represented in museums at home and abroad, and was a critical and commercial success. He was exceptiona …

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Gari Melchers’ Use of Photography

Gari Melchers was a painter in oil, watercolor and pastel. While some explored the possibilities of photography as an art form, the technology held little attraction for him other than how it might save him time and expense. Preliminary photographic re …

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The Early Modern Masterpiece That Might Have Been Ours

  When the National Gallery of Art opened the exhibition Degas at the Races in 1998, Peter Stroh, Gari Melchers’ great nephew, got to wondering if his uncle’s Degas painting would be included in the display. He wrote me to inquire about what I mig …

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The Painting That Keeps On Giving

The creation of a work of art, just as with music or poetry, begins with the germ of an idea or a sudden inspiration, suggested by, say, the flash of a girl’s smile or the wind whispering in the trees. The painter is quick to express his first response …

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Melchers to Appear in Impressionist Exhibition

Considering the Covid-19 maelstrom in which we find ourselves surrounded, I take great pleasure in having to share some happy news by giving a shout out to our favorite local artist Gari Melchers. A work by Melchers entitled Snow Scene is included in a …

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Staff Teams Up to Reconstruct Melchers-Era Farm Building

Thanks to the careful research of former Cultural Resource Manager Beate Jensen and the expert carpentry of our Maintenance Manager, Dave Ludeker and Maintenance Assistant, Daniel Carter, the appearance of the grounds and dependencies at Belmont reads …

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Local Poet Extols Belmont’s Spirit of Place

When poet, writer and editor Elizabeth Spencer Spragins of Fredericksburg travels the globe, her antennae are tuned to sacred echoes in the natural and manmade world, the consequences of which are the very personal and lyrical Celtic verse forms that s …

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A “Back Stairs” Party to Remember

Recently in my research I ran across a letter composed by the wife of Gari Melchers that I think is worth sharing. In it Mrs. Melchers recounted an episode that occurred during the couple’s residence in Germany from 1909 to 1915. Gari Melchers was call …

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Familiar Face in the News

Reproduced in the 2019 Summer issue of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Magazine is a 1930 portrait painted by Gari Melchers of John Barton Payne.  The caption with it announces a new practice being instituted by museum conservators to display on-going …

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Seventeenth Century Status Symbol

Sometimes when our guests enter the dining room and encounter the monumental painting Market Scene (above, 12′ x 7′) they profess to having seen it somewhere before. Are they imagining it? Probably not!  Many of our guests are true globetrotters who mi …

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