Painted Pages: Otto Ege and the Legacy of Leaves: A Curator’s Perspective

Published January 3, 2018

The Museum of Fine Arts -Washington County is pleased to present Painted Pages: Illuminated Manuscripts, 13th – 18th Centuries, which features more than thirty-five works drawn from Christian, Persian, Jewish, and classical traditions. Works include – medieval Bibles, prayer books, psalters, Books of Hours, choir books, missals, breviaries, and lectionaries, all of which are drawn from the collection of the Reading Public Museum in Reading, Pennsylvania. Examples of materials such as parchment, vellum, gold leaf, and minerals that were used by artists are on display in the exhibition.

The exhibition will be on view from November 4, 2017 through January 28, 2018 and is sponsored locally by the Maryland Humanities, RBC Wealth Management, Cindy and Bill Stead, Chambersburg, PA, BB&T, and Mr. & Mrs. Walter P. Smith. The exhibition is organized by the Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania.


On January 7, 2017, Lynley Anne Herbert, Ph.D., the Robert and Nancy Hall Assistant Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts at the Walters Art Museum, will present a free illustrated lecture at 2:30 p.m. entitled Otto Ege and the Legacy of Leaves: A Curator’s Perspective.

Dr. Herbert will explore the significant role that Otto Ege played in collecting and disseminating manuscript leaves from the early to mid-20th century.  As will be discussed, Ege became most renowned for assembling boxed portfolio sets of manuscript and typographic pages for commercial sale to universities, museums, and public libraries. The ethical questions surrounding these seemingly opposite issues of preservation and access will be among the topics addressed. Dr. Herbert will also examine the processes and techniques associated with medieval manuscript production.

Reserve your spot by January 5th by calling 301-739-5727 or emailing

To register for any of these events, visit or call the museum at 301-739-5727.

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