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Blanton Museum of Art | © Ethan Lundgaard/Flickr
Blanton Museum of Art | © Ethan Lundgaard/Flickr
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The Blanton Museum Of Art In 10 Artworks

Picture of Aubrey Cofield
Updated: 6 September 2016
Museums serve to preserve history and interpret the various views of life in a single artwork. They educate as much as they inspire, and Austin is fortunate to have one of the best. The University of Texas at Austin’s Blanton Museum of Art contains nearly 18,000 permanent pieces of artwork and holds many enthralling exhibitions each year. The museum is one of the largest university art museums in the US and showcases prominent collections including modern, contemporary, Latin, American, and European.


Created by Guercino, Astrologia was painted circa 1650-1655. Guercino’s paintings have a crisp natural style, which lends to the realism of his pieces. This artwork is his personification of astrology; in a sense, he shows the study of the stars through a human form. This is one of the Blanton’s classical and timeless artworks.

Head of a Young Man

Head of a Young Man was painted by artist Peter Paul Rubens in 1601. Rubens is one of the great artists from the 17th century, and he spent time learning under artists like Michelangelo. His art influenced many young students who also became well known. This artwork is another great classic included in the Blanton’s permanent collection.

Head of a Young Man © Public Domain/wikicommons
Head of a Young Man | © Public Domain/wikicommons

Portrait of Lady Hamilton as Ambassadress

This painting, circa 1791, is by George Romney, who is best known for painting leading societal figures of his time. Lady Hamilton, who was mistress of Lord Nelson, was by far Romney’s greatest muse. He painted her in many different variants, ranging from Lady Hamilton as Ambassadress (pictured below) to Lady Hamilton as Joan of Arc.

Lady Hamilton as Ambassadress © Ed Uthman/Flickr
Lady Hamilton as Ambassadress | © Ed Uthman/Flickr

When I Last Wrote to You about Africa, Untitled

This particular piece is made of copper wire and aluminum and is an untitled artwork belonging to artist El Anatsui‘s exhibition When I Last Wrote to You about Africa. Anatsui focuses his art on West African myths, present-day global issues, and ancient sculptures. The exhibit featured four decades of El Anatsui’s work, all of which have been recognized nationally, bringing Anatsui much acclaim and respect as an artist.

How To Build A Cathedral

This installation artwork by Cildo Meireles emanates the Jesuit missions to South America. It connects tragedies surrounding the missionaries who came and imposed a new culture on the indigenous people. The objects that make up the piece include a canopy of bones, a column of communion wafers, and a floor of money, translating into human loss, religion, and commerce. It’s a strong visual representation of a painful history.

How to Build a Cathedral © Ed Uthman/Flickr
How to Build a Cathedral | © Ed Uthman/Flickr


This outdoor installation by Jesús Rafael Soto gives visitors an opportunity to interact with art. Part of his Penetrables collection, the spaghetti-like structure is made of thin hanging tubes that serve as kinetic art, ‘movement perceivable by the viewer.’

Penetrable | © harmon/Flickr
Penetrable | © harmon/Flickr

Farrah Fawcett

A copy of Andy Warhol‘s Polaroid of Farrah Fawcett hangs on the outside of the Blanton. After a long legal dispute between the University of Texas at Austin and Fawcett’s longtime partner, Ryan O’Neal, the original Polaroid now belongs to O’Neal. Fawcett’s connection with UT Austin goes as far back as the 1960s when she attended college before moving to Los Angeles. This is one of Andy Warhol’s most prominent Polaroids; he was best known for introducing Pop Art and displaying celebrity culture along with advertisement art.

Farrah Fawcett © Ethan Lundgaard/Flickr
Farrah Fawcett | © Ethan Lundgaard/Flickr

Le Roi a la Chasse

Le Roi a la Chasse is an oil on canvas portrait by Kehinde Wiley. Wiley is best known for blending the lines between contemporary and traditional forms of art. He presents an urban black man amongst the soft green and floral background, challenging the way you depict and judge figures. The way that he portrays power and masculinity fused with an unlikely background swatch is absolutely fascinating.

Le Roi a la Chasse © Ed Uthman/Flickr
Le Roi a la Chasse | © Ed Uthman/Flickr

Two in One

Belonging to mid-century abstraction, George Sugarman uses the floor of this room for his 1966 installment, Two in One. These sculptures have a very contemporary feel, making Sugarman’s artwork very innovative for its time. These works provide the viewer a look into one of the more forward-thinking artists of his day.

Two In One © Ed Uthman/Flickr
Two In One | © Ed Uthman/Flickr

Stacked Waters

Set along the wall in the atrium at the Blanton Museum of Art is a 3,100-square-foot artwork made of blue custom-cast acrylic. The artist, Teresita Fernandez, wanted to give the illusion of water. Her artworks are largely inspired by nature and give off an awe-inspiring sense of grandness.

Stacked Waters © Jason Trbovich/Flickr
Stacked Waters | © Jason Trbovich/Flickr