The collection contains about 29,000 prints and over 11,000 drawings and watercolors, ranging in date from the 15th century to the present. Particular strengths include the Arthur Ross Collection, with about 1,000 prints by 18th-century Italian and 19th-century French artists as well as the Spanish artist Francisco Goya; over 600 prints and drawings from the early modern period, including German Expressionism, most of which came to the Gallery as part of the Société Anonyme Collection; a sizable selection of American watercolors, prints, and artists’ sketchbooks from the 19th through the early 20th century; and some 800 works by artists of the second half of the 20th century from the collections of Richard Brown Baker, B.A. 1935; Charles B. Benenson, B.A. 1933; Susan and Arthur Fleischer, Jr., B.A. 1953, LL.B. 1958; and Sally and Wynn Kramarsky. The Department of Prints and Drawings is also the world’s largest institutional repository of Sol LeWitt wall drawings and is the home of the Sol LeWitt Wall Drawing Resource.

View of a colorful striped wall in a lobby space

Other highlights are extraordinary prints by the Old Master printmakers Albrecht Dürer and Rembrandt van Rijn, an exemplary group of Dutch and Flemish 16th- and 17th-century drawings that constitute a study collection with few rivals in the United States, and a strong collection of printed portraits from the 16th to the 18th century. Recently, additions of Giorgio Ghisi’s engraving after Michelangelo’s Last Judgment, Michele Marieschi’s views of Venice, Filippo Morghen’s Voyage to the Moon, a series of etchings by Ange-Laurent de La Live de Jully after Jacques François Saly, and Tête de Flore by Louis-Marin Bonnet have substantially enhanced the collection. Among numerous 19th-century French drawings are stunning examples by Eugène Delacroix, Édouard Manet, Edgar Degas, Auguste Rodin, Georges Seurat, and Édouard Vuillard.

The Gallery also holds an extensive collection of drawings by the American Pre-Raphaelite artist Edwin Austin Abbey and virtually all the lithographs by two 19th-century French artists, Théodore Géricault and Paul Gavarni. In recent decades, the Gallery has acquired works by many contemporary artists, including Georg Baselitz, Gerhard Richter, and William Kentridge, and a number of important examples of 20th-century collage.

Prints and Drawings Highlights

Tales of Genji III

Artist: Helen Frankenthaler (American, 1928–2011, D.F.A. (Hon.) 1981)

Self-Portrait/White ink

Artist: Chuck Close (American, 1940–2021, B.F.A 1963, M.F.A. 1964, HON, 1996)
Printer and publisher: Crown Point Press (San Francisco, founded 1962)

Waves #1

Artist: Willem de Kooning (American, born the Netherlands, 1904–1997)
Printer: George Miyasaki (American, 1935–2013)
Printer: Nathan Oliveira (American, 1928–2010)

Tête de Flore (Head of Flora)

Engraver: Louis-Marin Bonnet (French, 1736–1793)
After: François Boucher (French, 1703–1770)

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