Bank of America’s Masterpiece Moment

Art inspires, educates, and helps us see our world in a new way

We could all use a little inspiration in our busy lives, and benefit from the context that art can bring to bear on our world, our times, and our history. Join us and museum directors from around the United States as we explore some of our greatest artistic treasures.

We’ll take a closer look at a new masterpiece every two weeks, so be sure to tune in, learn more, be inspired and discuss with friends and family.

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Wifredo Lam, <i>The Eternal Presence (An Homage to Alejandro García Caturia)</i>
Wifredo Lam, The Eternal Presence (An Homage to Alejandro García Caturia)

This complex and haunting work fuses Lam’s Cuban, Chinese, and Congolese heritage together with humans, plants, and animals into dream-like beings

Harry Fonseca, <i>Creation Story</i>
Harry Fonseca, Creation Story

At almost 18-feet wide, this monumental work depicts the stories of Fonseca’s Maidu ancestors while also celebrating the act of creation

Pablo Picasso, <i>La Vie</i>
Pablo Picasso, La Vie

La Vie is a poignant statement by a young Picasso mourning the loss of a friend.

Jackson Pollock, <i>Cathedral</i>
Jackson Pollock, Cathedral

Pollock placed his canvas on the ground and applied paint through movement.

Rufino Tamayo, <em>The Somnambulist</em>
Rufino Tamayo, The Somnambulist

Rufino Tamayo considered himself an international Mexican, bringing Mexican art and its cultural roots to the world and vice versa

Frida Kahlo, <em>Self-Portrait with Monkey</em>
Frida Kahlo, Self-Portrait with Monkey

Kahlo’s art embodies Mexicandad—the unique spirit and quality of being Mexican.

Julie Mehretu, <em>HOWL, eon (I, II)</em>
Julie Mehretu, HOWL, eon (I, II)

This painting at SFMOMA was inspired by 1950's San Francisco and uses digital images of contemporary riots and protests overlaid with paint.

Fernand Léger, <em>Untitled (Fireplace Mural)</em>
Fernand Léger, Untitled (Fireplace Mural)

In Paris, Léger became associated with some of the most forward-looking painters of the time, developing his own form of late Cubism so elegantly seen in this mural

Jonathan Green, <em>Folding Sheets</em>
Jonathan Green, Folding Sheets

A deceptively simple depiction of two women folding sheets on a summer day, painted with a limited color palette of indigo, white and shades of brown and black

Rembrandt van Rijn, <em>Self-Portrait, Age 23</em>
Rembrandt van Rijn, Self-Portrait, Age 23

The spotlight on the Rembrandt’s shoulder and cheek glow as if he is sitting in the gallery staring right back at you

<em>Portrait of Dr. Samuel D. Gross (The Gross Clinic)</em> by Thomas Eakins
Portrait of Dr. Samuel D. Gross (The Gross Clinic) by Thomas Eakins

The Gross Clinic of the famous surgeon Dr. Samuel D. Gross was made for the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, but was rejected by the jury, evidently because it was considered too frightening

<em>Protractor, Variation I</em> by Frank Stella
Protractor, Variation I by Frank Stella

Created in 1969 and composed of rhythmic bands of color, this is one of nearly 100 paintings in Stella’s Protractor series