The collection of more than 6,000 works of European art is broadly representative, rather than deep in the works of any one national school or historical era. A gift of sixteen Italian Renaissance and Baroque paintings from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation in 1961 includes religious subjects by Mariotto di Nardo, Sano di Pietro, Dosso Dossi, and Girolamo da Santacroce; a landscape by Francesco Guardi; and a character study by Giovanni Battista Piazzetta. Flemish works include a study in oils by Peter Paul Rubens (interestingly, once owned by François Boucher), a superb still life by Frans Synders, and a Saint Sebastian by Jan Boeckhorst. The Dutch paintings are distinguished by a Mannerist religious subject by Joachim Anthonisz Wtewael, historical subject paintings by Pieter Lastman and Willem de Poorter, genre scenes by Adriaen van Ostade and after Jan Steen, various works by Hendrik Cornelisz van Vliet, and a church interior by Bartholomeus van Bassen. The French holdings feature a still life by Alexandre-François Desportes, a Rococo subject by Hughes Taraval, a classical landscape by Louise Joséphine Sarazin de Belmont, a salon painting by William-Adolphe Bouguereau, works by Jean François Millet and Edouard Vuillard, a portrait by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, sculptures by Auguste Rodin, and Claude Monet’s Morning on the Seine.

The British collection includes Romantic landscapes by Philippe Jacques de Loutherbourg and Edward Lear; a classical subject by Angelica Kauffman; portraits by Peter Lely, Thomas Gainsborough, Francis Cotes, and Joshua Reynolds (including Lord Jeffery Amherst); and a Pre-Raphaelite painting by Thomas Francis Dicksee. The museum also holds a walnut-paneled room (described separately). Spanish works include a mid-sixteenth-century polychromed and gilded wood Pietà with Saint John and Mary Magdalene, a portrait by Juan de Valdés Leal, and numerous prints by Francisco de Goya (including the complete Caprichos and Disasters of War series), Joan Miro, and Pablo Picasso. Prints by Hendrick Goltzius, Albrecht Dürer, Rembrandt van Rijn, Jacques Callot, Honoré Daumier, Théodore Géricault, Eugène Delacroix, Édouard Manet, Camille Pissarro, William Hogarth, William Blake, and others—a collection built on a core gift from Edward C. Crossett (Class of 1905) in 1951—flesh out the European holdings, and find frequent use in class assignments.