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Shreveport museum presents European masterpieces in Kasten Collection

Emily Young.JPG
Kate Archer Kent

Paintings that are part of the Kasten Art Collection go on display today at the R.W. Norton Art Gallery in Shreveport. The Kasten Family of South Carolina has amassed works by British and European painters completed between the 1860s and 1920s. The Norton’s Emily Young said 32 pieces are on display in two galleries. It’s the second stop of a nationwide tour. She says the works – many impressionistic  – have a common trait: paintings within paintings.

“You see the full picture, but then you can pick out small things that if you would put a frame around it would stand by itself," Young said.

This art has made the rounds. Young says some pieces were debuted at the 1876 World’s Fair in Philadelphia. These painters didn’t set up their easels close to home. With improvements in transportation, they were able to travel to far off places. Young says they paint about sites and culture in Japan, Switzerland and Venice –  like huge postcards from their travels.

“A lot of these were French, English and German artists, and then they all traveled to these places to do these paintings. So the trains were a huge boost in getting to paint something different in a new culture," Young said.

The exhibit “Where will you travel next? Destinations in Paintings” is on display through July 7.