Though strongest in its holdings of American art, the Palmer has built an impressive collection of European prints, drawings, and paintings from the sixteenth to twentieth centuries.
Old Master Painting
A major strength of the museum lies in its collection of paintings by European artists from the sixteenth through eighteenth centuries. The Renaissance is represented by later Florentine artists Michele Tosini and Maso da San Friano, and works by Giovanni Battista Vanni, Pietro Vecchia, Giovanni Battista Boncori, and Master Jacomo exemplify the museum’s Baroque holdings.
Nineteenth-Century European Painting
The museum owns several late nineteenth-century paintings, such as a portrait by Emile Bernard and Vuillard's garden scene that reflect avant-garde tastes near the end of the century. Most of the works from this era in the museum’s collection, however, represent the more conservative aspects of the academic tradition. The latter group includes paintings by French artists Ary Scheffer, Georges Michel, and Jean-Louis Hamon, the Austrians Joseph Feid and Max Friedlander, and the Dutch landscape specialist, Remy van Haanen.
European Works on Paper
The museum collects the entire art-historical range of European works on paper, from medieval manuscripts to contemporary drawings and serigraphs. The major interest, however, has been in amplifying and contextualizing the museum’s European and American paintings with prints produced between the sixteenth and early twentieth centuries.