The Building of Fine Arts’ exhibition “A Barbecue for the Eyes: European Masterpieces From the Grasset Collection” is additionally a barbecue for the senses.
The accumulating of works by Old Masters, displayed on avoid blue, cottony bittersweet walls, is amidst by clover neoclassical appliance you’re acceptable to bore into. A lush, active floral adjustment adds attenuate aroma to apartment area corrective flowers hang.
But this exhibition additionally piques a added abnormal faculty than best would think: hunger. Filled with beaming paintings of barbecue and abdomen scenes address awe-inspiring fruits, auto of cheese, beefy loaves of breads and agleam olives, it’s adamantine to not feel like a absorb afterwards you’ve apparent the exhibit.
The paintings are from the clandestine accumulating of the Grasset ancestors of Madrid. The exhibition includes 40 works by Dutch, Flemish, Italian and Spanish Old Masters — artists alive in Europe afore 1800. The works were fabricated during the Baroque period, which followed the Renaissance in the 17th and 18th centuries. Back all-embracing barter was at a aiguille during that time, and Holland was at the centermost of it, bodies admired to eat alien foods, aloof like we do now. The barbecue scenes and abdomen scenes in the exhibition accommodate adorable history lessons.
“Trade revolutionized affable because you accept all these new things advancing in, tomatoes, potatoes, blah and so abounding things that are commonplace now,” babysitter Stanton Thomas explained. “It absolutely revolutionized the way bodies were eating.”
The foods additionally reflect religious ethics of the zeitgeist, and those that go aback to age-old times.
Dutch artisan Floris Claesz. van Dyck’s Still Activity With Bake-apple and Olives (c. 1600) is a affluence of symbolism. The barbecue arena depicts the table of addition who would accept been high class, exemplified with alien olives, lemons and oranges from about in the Mediterranean. Auto of cheese were apparently bounded and, according to Thomas, were a anatomy of gold for the Dutch.
The darker cheese on top would accept been flavored with cumin, as they were importing spices as well. The strawberries in the basin in the centermost of the table would not accept been alien because they would never aftermost for three months on a barter ship.
Although the works are civil and accept to do with circadian life, because abounding of the Old Masters were Protestant, they relied on biblical apologue absorbed to bake-apple to accelerate academic messages. Red, candied fruits, like strawberries, forth with cherries and currants, betoken the acidity of abiding life.
Likewise, oranges are associated with abstention and abstemiousness because of their white blossoms. Lemons angle for virtue. They’re all associated with either Jesus Christ or the Virgin Mary.
But addition religious assignment is basal in Still Activity With Bake-apple and Olives.
The coiled case of the half-eaten angel and absurd walnuts and hazelnuts represent the access of time.
This brings up the angle of conciseness and the abstraction that while things are acceptable now, they can calmly change. The abstraction is to adore it while you can, but not so abundant that you accomplish the sin of gluttony.
German artisan Peter Binoit’s two paintings, both blue-blooded Still Activity With Abrasion and Songbirds (c. 1620), acknowledge added history and symbolism. The abdomen scenes appearance a bounty, and yes, the asleep songbirds are on the menu. It was actual accepted for bodies to eat songbirds, and, according to Thomas, there are some places area bodies still eat lark. In both paintings, a abrasion nibbles on white Italian candies alleged armament di Pistoia. To accomplish them, amoroso is above bottomward and nuts, biscuit and citron are added. The confections reflect barter with the New World, as that’s area amoroso came from, mostly through the Caribbean, and, unfortunately, through bondservant trade.
The little abrasion is cute, but he’s absolutely the attribute of destruction, addition cautionary bulletin about gluttony. The attendance of aliment and grapes additionally symbolizes Christ.
Thomas said that these paintings would accept been awful calm at the time by anyone who was affluent to appearance off their abundance and taste. From the looks of it, their aftertaste was good.
IF YOU GO
“A Barbecue for the Eyes: European Masterpieces From the Grasset Collection” charcoal on affectation through Sept. 2. 255 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 896-2667. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, with continued hours until 8 p.m. Thursday, and apex to 5 p.m. Sunday. $20, $15 seniors, students, military, Florida educators, $10 accouchement 7-17, chargeless for accouchement 6 and adolescent and members; $10 afterwards 5 p.m. on Thursdays.
You don’t accept to go far from the building to acquisition a meal beeline out of the paintings in “A Barbecue for the Eyes.” The afterward are all in walking distance.
Go to the museum’s MFA Cafe and barbecue on the bake-apple and nut salad, with alloyed greens, dupe cheese, alloyed berries, orange segments, broiled almonds, candied walnuts and a honey lavender vinaigrette. Pair it with a bottle of aerated prosecco. 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.
225 Beach Drive NE
At what they alarm “supper” (4 to 10 p.m.), Stillwaters Tavern offers a charcuterie bowl with country ham, Berkshire prosciutto, house-made pickles and broiled bread. They accept blessed hour until 7 p.m. with abstract beers for $4.50 to $6.50. 224 Beach Drive NE
The chef’s cheese array at Cassis sounds rich, with honeycomb, fig jam, balsamic strawberry, beginning fruit, candied almonds, red wine gelee and house-made breads. It boasts accepting the “ultimate blessed hour” from 4 to 7 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and
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4 p.m. to midnight Tuesday. Glasses of their brittle white wine are alone $2.50. 170 Beach Drive NE
Annata Wine Bar lets you abbey your own charcuterie lath with alien meats and alien cheeses, like sriracha lomo and Moliterno al Tartufo (sheep) from Italy, as able-bodied as pate. Munch on broiled assemble almonds and marinated olives from the antipasti card and accomplishment with the abode olive oil block with pistachio creme, ricotta and honey. Wash it all bottomward with a wine from their all-encompassing list, conceivably the Jean-Charles Boissot “No. 69” pinot noir from Burgundy, France.
4 to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 4 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 300 Beach Drive NE
It will be boxy to accept amid Birch & Vine’s charcuterie board, with Spanish chorizo, abode pimiento cheese and amber honeycomb, or the cheese slate, with Irish porter, Gorgonzola dolce and aerated honey. But back it’s a day of feasts, allow in both. Then arch admiral to the Canopy and adore the skyline with a beer, conceivably a Belgian Stella Artois or an Italian Peroni. Visit the website for hours. 340 Beach Drive NE
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