Opening Fall 2021
A new space dedicated to the study of French artist Henri Matisse will shine a spotlight on the largest and most comprehensive collection of works by the artist in a public museum. The Ruth R. Marder Center for Matisse Studies—located on the first floor adjacent to The Nancy Dorman and Stanley Mazaroff Center for the Study of Prints, Drawings and Photographs—will serve as a major resource for scholars and visitors interested in learning more about the French master’s practice. The Marder Matisse Center will also host conferences and lectures focused on Matisse and his enduring legacy and provide opportunities for exhibitions, programs, and publication development.
The BMA’s Matisse collection was first established in the early 20th century through the vision and philanthropy of Baltimore sisters Claribel and Etta Cone, whose internationally renowned collection was bequeathed to the museum in 1949 and is the centerpiece of the BMA’s expansive holdings. Among the highlights of the Cone Collection are more than 600 works by Matisse—considered one of the greatest artists of the 20th century—including paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, and illustrated books. To this incredible group of objects, the BMA has added more than 600 works by the artist over the years, many of them from the artist’s family.
In 2020, the Museum received $3.5 million from a longtime museum advocate to endow The Ruth R. Marder Center for Matisse Studies directorship. In recognition of this generous gift, the position has been titled The Anne and Ben Cone Memorial Director. The named directorship acknowledges Clarabel and Etta Cone’s nephew and his wife, who have continued the family’s legacy of support for the BMA.
Katy Rothkopf, Senior Curator and Department Head of European Painting and Sculpture, was appointed The Anne and Ben Cone Memorial Director of the Ruth R. Marder Center for Matisse Studies in 2020.