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Gallery to feature Impressionist art

A major exhibit of paintings by Pablo Picasso, Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet and other important artists will open in September at the Appleton Museum of Art.

The Appleton is calling the exhibit "Once in Our Lifetime," and museum director Jeffrey Spalding says it is a major coup for the Ocala gallery, which is jointly owned by Florida State University and Central Florida Community College.

"These works are truly masterpieces, not simply examples of works by important artists," Spalding said in a news release. "These are acknowledged, individual outstanding paintings.

"Seeing these works confirms why these artists command world admiration. The show will be a moving, magnificent experience."

Spalding was joined by FSU president Talbot "Sandy" D'Alemberte at a news conference Wednesday to announce the exhibit.

"To be able to host a show of this magnitude demonstrates how well-regarded the Appleton Museum has become," D'Alemberte said, according to the release.

The works are on loan from the Art Gallery of Ontario's collection of 19th and 20th century paintings. The Ontario gallery temporarily stored the exhibit to make way for a large traveling exhibit from Russia.

Spalding said it is the first time in the Ontario gallery's 100-year history that the paintings have been taken down.

The paintings form two exhibits. Works from 19th century painters will be shown Sept. 8 through Dec. 6, while 20th century works will be exhibited from February through April, though the exact dates haven't been decided.

The first exhibit contains 22 major paintings, including the best of the Ontario gallery's impressionist collection. These include Claude Monet's Crossing The Bridge and Pierre-Auguste Renoir's The Seine at Chatou and The Concert. Other artists include Paul Cezanne, van Gogh and Edgar Degas.

The 20th century exhibit will feature Picasso's The Soup, an early work from his Blue Period and Seated Woman, representing his Cubism and Surrealism periods. Other surrealists in the second exhibit include Yves Tanguy, Roberto Matta and Rene Magritte.

The Appleton, 4337 E Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Docent-led tours are offered at 1:15 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors and $2 for students 18 and older; students younger than 18 are admitted free. The current photography exhibit, Masters of the 20th Century, runs through Aug. 26. Call (352) 236-7100.

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