Friday, March 07, 2014

A Book Like "The Goldfinch" ? -- Sign Me Up!

Tuesday, March 11, 7 pm

SALEM, MA –– The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) is partnering with The Netherland-America Foundation to present Nina Siegal, author of The Anatomy Lesson, on Tuesday, March 11, at 7 pm. The Anatomy Lesson, hitting bookstores the same day, is a historical novel based on the painting The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp, the first of Rembrandt’s works to bring the young artist international success. Open for the evening will be Golden Light, an exhibition that explores Dutch art and life in the 1600s through a selection of paintings from the internationally significant collection of Rose-Marie and Eijk van Otterloo.

Set in the Dutch Golden Age, the story follows in the path of other recent best-sellers based on paintings, such as Donna Tartt’s runaway success The Goldfinch and Tracy Chevalier’s modern classic The Girl with the Pearl Earring. Siegal’s novel imagines the story behind Rembrandt’s renowned painting, opening on the morning of the medical dissection and follows several characters as they prepare for the evening’s big event. Set in Amsterdam in 1632, the novel recreates the lives of a young Rembrandt as he is commissioned to paint the now famous scene, the curio collector who secured the cadaver for him, the young widow whose husband was hanged and whose corpse the collector delivers, even René Descartes, who was in fact present at the dissection Rembrandt depicts.

Much like The Girl with the Pearl Earring did for Vermeer, The Anatomy Lesson brilliantly brings to life one of Rembrandt's most well-known works. The author spent six years working on the novel in Amsterdam, where she was mentored by the world's leading Rembrandt scholar, Ernst van de Wetering.

Following the presentation, Siegal will answer questions. There will be a small reception, where the author will sign copies of the book, which will be for sale. To learn more, read this Q & A with the author on PEM’s blog, Connected.

FREE Admission |  No Reservations Required | PEM’s  Morse Auditorium  

About Nina Siegal

Nina Siegal is a New Yorker based in Amsterdam, who works as an author, editor and journalist. She graduated with a B.A. in English literature from Cornell University and received her M.F.A. in fiction from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She has received numerous grants and fellowships for her fiction, including a Fulbright Fellowship in Creative Writing, two MacDowell Colony fellowships, and the post-graduate Jack Leggett Fellowship from Iowa. Her first novel, A Little Trouble with the Facts, a neo-noir comedic murder mystery, was published by HarperCollins (New York) in 2008, and was a finalist for the James Jones First Novel Fellowship. Siegal's journalistic writing has appeared in dozens of newspapers and magazines, including The International Herald Tribune, The Wall Street Journal, W. Magazine, Art in America, 1stDibs, ArtNews and Bloomberg News. She has been contributing articles to The New York Times since 1997 and frequently writes about art for The International New York Times. In 2008 she was the launching editor for TimeOut Amsterdam magazine, which she ran as editor-in-chief until 2012, and thereafter she became managing editor of Flow Magazine International, which launched in 2012.

About Golden Light
Golden Light explores Dutch art and life in the 1600s through a selection of paintings from the internationally significant collection of Rose-Marie and Eijk van Otterloo. In 2011, more than 105,000 visitors viewed the namesake exhibition at PEM, Golden: Dutch and Flemish Masterworks from the Rose-Marie and Eijk van Otterloo Collection. This new installation features 15 paintings by Jan Lievens, Emanuel de Witte, Pieter Claesz, Jan Brueghel the Elder and notable others.

Founded in 1799, the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) presents outstanding works of artistic and cultural creativity in ways that transform people's lives. The museum's collection is among the finest of its kind, showcasing an unrivaled spectrum of American art and architecture as well as outstanding Asian, Asian export, Native American, African, Oceanic, maritime and photography collections. In addition to its vast holdings, the museum offers a vibrant schedule of changing exhibitions and an interactive education center. The museum campus features numerous parks, period gardens and 22 historic properties, including Yin Yu Tang, a 200‐year‐old house that is the only example of Chinese domestic architecture on display in the United States. Currently, a comprehensive $650 million Campaign is underway to advance PEM's mission, fortify its endowment, improve infrastructure and build a 175,000-square-foot expansion. HOURS: Open Tuesday-Sunday, 10 am5 pm and the third Thursday of every month until 9 pm. Closed Mondays (except holidays), Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. ADMISSION: Adults $18; seniors $15; students $10. Additional admission to Yin Yu Tang: $5. Members, youth 17 and under and residents of Salem enjoy free general admission and free admission to Yin Yu Tang. INFO: Call 866‐745‐1876 or visit

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