NEW AND UPCOMING EXHIBITIONS
Gauguin, Cézanne, Matisse: Visions of Arcadia
June 20–September 3, 2012
This exhibition examines a mythic place of beauty and repose and its enduring appeal for artists from antiquity to the birth of modern art. At the heart of the exhibition are three monumental canvases, each an acknowledged masterpiece and each, in its own distinctive way, a powerful response to the Arcadian tradition: Paul Cézanne’s enigmatic The Large Bathers (1906), the largest of this artist’s paintings in an idyllic landscape which caused a sensation when it was first exhibited in 1907; Paul Gauguin’s Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? (1897-98), which situates an Arcadian theme in the distant realm of Polynesia where the artist spent his last years and created some of his finest and most powerful works; and Henri Matisse’s Bathers by a River (1909-17), the mural-sized painting that was inspired in part by Cézanne and that represents one of the greatest achievements of Matisse’s career.
Among the 24 other artists in the exhibition are Henri Rousseau, Pablo Picasso, Robert Delaunay, and Georges Seurat. Showcasing ambitious mural-scaled works, Gauguin, Cézanne, Matisse: Visions of Arcadia will examine the different, yet closely related and complementary meanings of these paintings, each a landmark in the history of modern art.
The exhibition is organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, its only venue.The exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. Additional support is provided by Mrs. Louis C. Madeira IV, The Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trusts, The Annenberg Foundation Fund for Exhibitions, The Robert Montgomery Scott Fund for Exhibitions, The Kathleen C. and John J. F. Sherrerd Fund for Exhibitions, The Arcadia Foundation, Dennis Alter, Barbara B. and Theodore R. Aronson, and other generous individuals. The accompanying publication was supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Fund for Scholarly Publications. Curator: Joseph J. Rishel, The Gisela and Dennis Alter Senior Curator of European Painting before 1900, and Senior Curator of the John G. Johnson Collection and the Rodin Museum
Location: Dorrance Galleries Press Images
Cy Twombly: Sculptures
Through March 2013
A suite of six bronze sculptures, the last planned installation by the late artist Cy Twombly (1928-1911), is on view in the Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Dating from 1979 to 2011, they were selected by the artist for display in the building’s Skylit Atrium in close collaboration with the Museum before Twombly’s death in July 2011. The white-washed bronze sculptures, which possess surfaces richly inflected by the casting process, range in size and imagery, each including motifs found in Fifty Days at Illiam of 1978, a group of paintings by Twombly that are considered to be one of the Museum’s s masterpieces of modern and contemporary art. With the Trojan War as their subject, the paintings and the bronze sculptures allude to the circumstances of an ancient fight: to chariots, sitting still or ferociously charging; the rising sun before the conflict; and the sunset, falling equally on the victorious and the defeated.
The installation is made possible thanks to the generosity of Jill and Sheldon Bonovitz, Mickey Cartin, Isabel and Agustín Coppel, Daniel W. Dietrich II, Jaimie and David Field, Glenn and Amanda Fuhrman, Kimberley Gray, Marjorie and Jeffrey Honickman, Susan and Kenneth Kaisesrman, Jane and Leonard Korman, Mr. and Mrs. Keith L. Sachs, and Dr. Sankey V. Williams and Constance H. Williams.
Sculptures courtesy of the Cy Twombly Foundation.Curator: Carlos Basualdo, the Keith and Katherine Sachs Curator of Contemporary Art
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Skylit Atrium Press Images
Craft Spoken Here
Through August 12, 2012
This exhibition presents 41 works by 39 craft artists from 11 countries in a variety of media, including ceramic, rubber, bronze, glass, wood, silver, silk, and natural fibers. Craft Spoken Here highlights both the distinctive approaches taken by each of the individuals as well as the formal and expressive affinities that they share. The links between these artists reflect the continuing vitality of craft as a form of visual expression, and underscore the fact that its practice, always evolving to encompass new materials and new techniques, spans continents and generations. International in scope, Craft Spoken Here also pays homage to Philadelphia’s vibrant craft tradition by featuring four prominent artists with local ties: Rebecca Medel, Doug Bucci, Jessica Julius, and Rudolf Staffel. The exhibition will connect with the crafting community through the CraftLAB, a space within the exhibition dedicated to demonstrating and exploring craft techniques, in which visitors will be invited to participate.
Craft Spoken Here is made possible by The Leonard and Norma Klorfine Foundation Fund for Modern and Contemporary Craft. Additional support is provided by the Windgate Charitable Foundation and the Center for American Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. In-kind support is provided in courtesy of A.C. Moore Arts & Crafts, Inc., Calico Corners, and Lion Brand Yarn.
Curator: Elizabeth Agro, The Nancy M. McNeil Associate Curator of American Modern and Contemporary Crafts and Decorative Arts
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Exhibition GalleryPress Images
Rockwell Kent—Voyager: An Artist’s Journey in Prints, Drawings, and Illustrated Books
Through July 29, 2012
Once famous among his contemporaries as an artist, author, adventurer, and political activist, Rockwell Kent (1882–1971) left an enduring legacy as a printmaker and illustrator of books. His drawings and limited edition prints could transport viewers to far-away lands, bolster progressive causes, and prove effective both in advertising and book illustration. Rockwell Kent—Voyager surveys the artist’s achievements from 1907 to the 1950s, including the artist’s travel narratives, illustrations for literary classics, and advertising designs, as well as works that illuminate his commitment to leftist politics from World War I through the McCarthy era. With over 100 works on paper, the exhibition also features watercolors, pen and ink drawings, a sketchbook, and lithographic stone that open a window onto the artist’s creative process.Curator: Brooks Rich, Dorothy J. del Bueno Curatorial Fellow and John Ittman, The Kathy and Ted Fernberger Curator of Prints Location: Berman Gallery Press Images
Ralph Eugene Meatyard: Dolls and Masks
Through August 5, 2012
A pioneering photographer who composed staged scenes for the camera, Ralph Eugene Meatyard (1925–1972) was an artist known and admired by a close circle of fellow photographers, writers, and scholars. His work throughout the late 1950s and 60s, which is the focus of this exhibition, incorporated the motifs of dolls and masks, foreshadowing his iconic 1972 project The Family Album of Lucybelle Crater, and proving influential for a future generation of photographers. Dolls and Masks features more than 40 photographs made between 1957 and 1968. Many of the works depict Meatyard’s wife, children and friends wearing masks that he purchased at five and dime stores or found at thrift stores and junkyards. Other photographs feature soiled and dismembered dolls. All the pictures are staged in rundown Victorian houses, cemeteries, and forests. Altering the people and dolls in his pictures so that no one or anything appears as expected, Meatyard played with type, age, and gender, exploring the contrasts between youth and maturity, childhood and mortality, intimacy and unknowability.This exhibition is organized by the Art Institute of Chicago. Curator: Peter Barberie, The Brodsky Curator of Photographs, Alfred Stieglitz Center Location: The Honickman Gallery Press Images
Sol LeWitt: Lines in Four Directions in Flowers
Through Summer 2014
This garden consists of rows of flowers in four different colors planted on a long rectangular plot of land in the William M. Reilly Memorial at Fairmount Park, adjacent to the Museum’s Anne d’Harnoncourt Sculpture Garden and overlooking the Schuylkill River. A leading figure in the Conceptual Art movement, LeWitt (1928-2007) conceived the installation 30 years ago, yet it had remained unrealized until now. It is the only project of its kind within LeWitt’s acclaimed and remarkably diverse body of work.
LeWitt designed Lines in Four Directions in Flowers in 1981 when he was invited by the Fairmount Park Art Association to prepare a proposal for a public work at a site in Fairmount Park. He selected the Reilly Memorial. LeWitt suggested an installation which would consist of flower plantings of “four different colors (white, yellow, red and blue) in four equal rectangular areas, in rows of four directions (vertical, horizontal, diagonal left and right) framed by evergreen hedges of about 2 feet in height. In the winter the rows of plants would retain their linear direction, in the summer the flowers would bloom and provide color. The type of plant, height, distance apart and planting details would be under the direction of a botanist and the maintenance by a gardener.”
Developed in partnership with Philadelphia Parks and Recreation, the installation will be on view over the next two years. Landscape architecture and urban design firm OLIN, in consultation with Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, worked in partnership with the Philadelphia Museum of Art to interpret LeWitt’s drawing and written description of the design and oversee the installation of this work. With a lot size totaling 18,850 square feet (nearly one-third the size of a football field), each of the four beds within the garden is 4,320 square feet (80’ x 54’). In total, the colored quadrants contain more than 7,000 plants, each color palette containing four to five plants. Groundswell Design Group, LLC, a landscape architect design and build firm located in Hopewell, NJ, planted the flowers, which were grown at The Perennial Farm in Glen Arm, MD. Groundswell will maintain the garden throughout the next two years.
Sol LeWitt’s Lines in Four Directions in Flowers is made possible by a generous grant from The Pew Charitable Trusts and executed in partnership with Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, courtesy of the Estate of Sol LeWitt. The landscape design was conceived by OLIN, based on the artist’s 1981 proposal to the Fairmont Park Art Association, and carried out by Groundswell Design Group, LLC.Press Images
Prom: Photographs by Mary Ellen Mark
July 1—October 28, 2012
From Hollywood insiders to Florida retirees, much of Mary Ellen Mark’s work explores the many facets of American culture. In her latest collection of photographs, Mark captures a quintessential adolescent experience, the American prom. Depicting youth at the outset of the 21st century, Prom presents 60 black and white photographs of teens in festive dress at their most anticipated event of the year. Taken at 13 high school formals across the country between 2006 and 2009, Mark’s pictures represent not only geographic and demographic diversity, but a broad spectrum of relationships, body types, and aspirations. In this series and exhibition, Mark chronicles a vivid rite of passage that is shared by Americans with otherwise remarkably different lives.
The Philadelphia Museum of Art is the first public venue for Mark’s Prom series. The exhibition will also include a 33-minute video entitled Prom, made by Mark’s husband, filmmaker Martin Bell, which captures interviews with many of the photographed subjects, bringing their voices and thoughts into contact with their pictures. The photographs in Prom were all taken with a 20-by-24-inch Polaroid Land Camera, which makes large-format prints.
Mark (born 1940) is a native Philadelphian and a graduate of the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. One of the schools represented in this series is her alma mater, Cheltenham High School, in Wyncote, Pennsylvania.Curator: Peter Barberie, The Brodsky Curator of Photographs, Alfred Stieglitz Center Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Levy Gallery Press Images
The Rodin Museum (Re-opening)
July 13, 2012
Philadelphia’s Rodin Museum will reopen to the public, newly refurbished, reinstalled with monumental sculptures, and closely restored to what the public experienced when it first opened on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway nearly 84 years ago. The 10-month renovation follows a three-year project to rejuvenate the grounds and gardens and an intensive period of painstaking research into the building’s original appearance, yielding such fine details as the first paint colors, wood stains, plaster finishes and wall fabrics. The comprehensive cleaning embraced the exterior stonework and the interior, including the building’s tall windows and high dramatic skylight that extends across the vaulted main gallery and now generously bathes the space below in far more daylight. Before closing last summer, the museum showcased its highlights, the most comprehensive collection of Rodin’s art outside Paris. This summer, returning visitors will see more sculpture displayed in the garden and upon entering the interior encounter an entirely new presentation. It includes 90 works that together survey the genesis and significance of Rodin’s monumental The Gates of Hell, a seminal project inspired by Dante’s Inferno that consumed the artist for more than three decades until his death in 1917. Visitors will also enjoy the opportunity to participate in new public programs, including family activities and performances, and experience enhanced interpretive information including a Rodin Museum mobile app. In addition, the Museum will offer new public hours, Wednesday through Monday, and closed on Tuesdays.
The Philadelphia Museum of Art thanks and commends all those who made outstanding gifts in support of the restoration and renovation of the Rodin Museum, its grounds, and garden. In partnership with The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and the City of Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation, support was secured from the City of Philadelphia, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, The Pew Charitable Trusts, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and The William Penn Foundation. Leadership support was provided by Mrs. Samuel M. V. Hamilton, the Dorrance H. Hamilton Charitable Trust, The Hamilton Family Foundation, and the William B. Dietrich Foundation, with additional generous support from the City of Philadelphia, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Zoë and Dean Pappas, Lisa D. Kabnick and John H. McFadden, The McLean Contributionship, Barbara B. and Theodore R. Aronson, and other individuals.
Curators: Joseph Rishel, The Gisela and Dennis Alter Senior Curator of European Painting before 1900, and Senior Curator of the John G. Johnson Collection and the Rodin Museum Jennifer Thompson, The Gloria and Jack Drosdick Associate Curator of European Painting and Sculpture before 1900 and the Rodin MuseumPress Images
Notations: Sean Scully
August 2012–February 2013
Sean Scully’s paintings speak eloquently to the history of abstraction, engaging in a conversation with the legacies of Abstract Expressionism and Minimalism while offering new models for the continuing role of nonfigurative art. Scully employs the basic motif of colored blocks arranged horizontally and vertically, expressed on different scales, from the intimate to the monumental. Notations: Sean Scully features two major works by this acclaimed artist that were recently donated to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Chelsea Wall #1 (1999) captures the spirit of the postindustrial urban landscape around the artist’s New York studio (and was the first major picture he completed in this space). The majestic triptych Iona (2004–6) stands as a somber meditation on the small, tranquil island of the same name in Scotland’s Inner Hebrides. The installation also includes a number of additional loans from the artist, among them his 12 Small Mirrors painted on copper panels.
Notations is an ongoing series of gallery installations named after the 1968 book by American composer, writer, and visual artist John Cage, who was widely celebrated for his experimental approach to the arts. The Notations series at the Philadelphia Museum of Art serves as a flexible tool to explore contemporary art.Location: Alter Gallery 176
Full Spectrum: Prints from the Brandywine Workshop
September 7—November 25, 2012
In 2009, the Brandywine Workshop in Philadelphia donated 100 prints by 89 artists to the Philadelphia Museum of Art in memory of the Museum’s late director, Anne d’Harnoncourt. This year, the Workshop celebrates its 40th anniversary as a center dedicated to the creation of prints and to broadening their appreciation. Working with local artists, hosting visiting artist residencies, and offering a wide array of educational programming, the Workshop actively engages diverse artists and communities. To honor the Workshop’s generous gift, the Museum is presenting an exhibition that will include more than 50 prints, among them works by John Biggers, Edgar Heap of Birds, Mei-ling Hom, Ibrahim Miranda, and Howardena Pindell. Representing the broad range of the artists who have produced work at the Brandywine Workshop, Full Spectrum will feature prints by African and African American, Asian, Caucasian, Hispanic, Latino, Caribbean, and Native American artists. Cultural identity, political and social issues, portraiture, and landscape, as well as patterning and pure abstraction, are just some of the many concerns explored in their prints, underscoring the breadth of the Workshop’s stylistic and conceptual reach.
The exhibition is funded in part by The Pew Charitable Trusts.Curator: Curator: Shelley R. Langdale, Associate Curator of Prints and Drawings
Location: Location: Honickman and Berman Galleries Press Images
Shipwreck! Winslow Homer and The Life Line
September 22—December 16, 2012While living in a tiny fishing village in England in 1881-82, the American artist Winslow Homer was profoundly moved by the sight of a shipwreck that would focus his imagination on the power and peril of the sea. His art took on a new seriousness and drama, demonstrated in a major painting made soon after his return to the United States: The Life Line (1884), one of his greatest popular and critical successes. A masterpiece owned by the Philadelphia Museum of Art for almost 90 years, The Life Line is the centerpiece of an exhibition about the making and meaning of an iconic American image of rescue at sea. Celebrating modern heroism and the thrill of unexpected intimacy between strangers thrown together by disaster, Shipwreck: Winslow Homer and “The Life Line” contains 30 works by Homer complemented by a range of precedents in the shipwreck and rescue genre including paintings, watercolors, etchings, engravings, sketches and ceramics ranging in date from the mid-17th to the early 20th centuries. The Philadelphia Museum of Art will be the only venue for this important exhibition, which includes fragile and rarely seen watercolors, prints, and drawings.
The exhibition is made possible by The Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Foundation for the Arts. Additional support is provided in part by the Center for American Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Funding for the catalogue is generously provided by the Davenport Family Foundation and the Wyeth Foundation for American Art.Curator: Kathleen A. Foster, The Robert L. McNeil, Jr., Senior Curator of American Art, and Director, Center for American Art
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Exhibition Gallery Press Images
Dancing Around the Bride: Cage, Cunningham, Johns, Rauschenberg, and Duchamp
October 30, 2012–January 21, 2013Examining one of the most important chapters in the history of contemporary art, this is the first exhibition to explore Marcel Duchamp’s American legacy by tracing his interactions and exchanges with four postwar masters: composer John Cage, choreographer Merce Cunningham, and visual artists Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg. The exhibition will feature over 100 works, including more than 60 by Johns and Rauschenberg and more than 40 by Duchamp, as well as prerecorded and live music by John Cage, and live performances of choreographies by Merce Cunningham. Many of these works will be seen together for the first time and reflect the artists’ multiple levels of engagement across the disciplines of art, dance, and music. Dancing around the Bride, organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, will debut in Philadelphia and then travel to the Barbican Centre in London in February 2013. Setting the direction for many subsequent developments in contemporary art, Duchamp famously questioned the very definition of art, probing the distinction between art and life, turning to chance rather than fixed ideas about taste and aesthetics, and utilizing everyday objects not only in the creation of his work, but as objects of art themselves. Encountering Duchamp and his work at various moments during the early stages of their own development, Cage, Cunningham, Johns, and Rauschenberg each embraced key aspects of Duchamp’s ideas and artistic practices and, by doing so, reinvigorated Duchamp’s own reception in the United States from the 1960s onward. The exhibition will highlight formative moments such as Rauschenberg’s and Johns’s 1958 visit to the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see Duchamp’s The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even (The Large Glass) (1915–23), one of the Museum’s greatest masterpieces and the source for this exhibition’s title. The exhibition is made possible by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage through the Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative. Additional support was generously provided by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, The Women’s Committee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Glenstone, The Presser Foundation, the Dedalus Foundation, Dr. Sankey V. Williams and Constance H. Williams, Barbara B. and Theodore R. Aronson, Jaimie and David Field, Mari and Peter Shaw, Mr. and Mrs. Aaron Levine, and other generous individuals. Support for the accompanying publication is generously provided by Larry Gagosian. Curator: Carlos Basualdo, The Keith L. and Katherine Sachs Curator of Contemporary Art, in collaboration with Erica F. Battle, Project Curatorial Assistant, Modern and Contemporary Art
Location: Dorrance Galleries Press Images
Ronaldus Shamask: Form, Fashion, Reflection
October 6, 2012–March 10, 2013In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Ronaldus Shamask burst onto the runway with thoughtfully spare minimalist works during a time of excess. Disregarding trends, Shamask drew on his background in illustration, architecture, theatre and dance as well as collaborations with choreographers and artists in order to create a timeless body of work. Regarded as a “designer’s designer,” his work paved the way for the new minimalism in fashion today. Ronaldus Shamask: Form, Fashion, Reflection will look back on the artist’s last thirty years in the fashion industry as well as to the future. The exhibition will include iconic Shamask clothing designs, as well as works made specifically for this exhibition, including translucent paper renditions shown as mirror images of the garments to reveal form of construction. The installation will include a “mood” wall that re-imagines the artist’s design process using fashion and dance costume sketches, fabrics, color swatches, and visual references from art and architecture that serve as inspiration. The galleries will also feature video clips from fashion shows, as well as dance performances showcasing his costumes and collaborative work undertaken with artists such as Jennifer Bartlett, Arman, and Michele Oka Doner. Curator: Dilys Blum, The Jack M. and Annette Y. Friedland Senior Curator of Costume and Textiles
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Spain Gallery Press Images
Double Portrait: Paula Scher and Seymour Chwast, Graphic Designers
December 2012–March 2013Illustrator Seymour Chwast is the acclaimed graphic designer Paula Scher’s greatest influence, and also happens to be her husband. With a shared sensibility and approach to design, their work has transformed the fields in which they practice. Double Portrait celebrates the achievements of this creative couple, whose illustrations and designs will be shown together for the first time. The exhibition in the Collab Gallery will include more than 150 images in a wide range of formats, selected and installed by Chwast (b. 1931) and Scher (b. 1948). Both Chwast and Scher understand graphics as expression, very often comic expression, and are drawn to eclectic influences and conceptual methods. Double Portrait explores the artists’ commonalities and differences in works ranging from record albums, books, magazine covers, and illustrations to posters, typefaces, trademarks, videos, identities and environmental graphics. On Saturday, December 1, they will be honored with the Design Excellence Award given by Collab, the group of design professionals and enthusiasts that supports the modern and contemporary design collection at the Museum. Curator: Kathryn Bloom Hiesinger, Curator of European Decorative Arts after 1700
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Collab Gallery Press Images
The Roberta and Richard Huber Collection
February–June, 2013Since Roberta and Richard Huber began collecting Spanish and Portuguese colonial art in 1973, their collection has led them from Lisbon to Lima and La Paz, and what began as a fascinating hobby blossomed into a deep engagement and understanding of this important and underappreciated field. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the development of a vast network of trade routes created the conditions for an unparalleled artistic exchange within the Spanish and Portuguese colonial empires. Emblematic of their time and place, the works created in the Spanish and Portuguese colonies of Latin American and Asia are often distinctive in style and content, yet they also reflect a shared heritage of culture, religion, and artistic practice. The 126 objects in The Roberta and Richard Huber Collection include paintings, silver, and furniture from South America as well as ivory sculptures from the Philippines, India, and Sri Lanka. Begun when the study of Latin American colonial art history was in its infancy, the Huber collection represents the passionate interests of two individuals and their successful effort to build a collection of great quality and historical significance. The combination of these complex visual traditions—European, American, and Asian—will provide viewers with a glimpse of the new visual culture forged in the making of a global empire. Curator: Joseph J. Rishel, The Gisela and Dennis Alter Senior Curator of European Painting before 1900, and Senior Curator of the John G. Johnson Collection and the Rodin Museum
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Exhibition Gallery Press Images
“Great and Mighty Things”: Art from the Jill and Sheldon Bonovitz Collection
March–May 2013Working in relative isolation and outside the mainstream of artistic discourse, “outsider” or “self-taught” artists, as they are often called, have produced works of rare accomplishment and compelling beauty. Using unconventional materials such as wood scraps, sheet metal, and house paint, or even stove soot or chicken bones, in unconventional ways, they have drawn upon their own experiences, their immediate surroundings, and the abundant imagery of popular culture to create highly personal and intensely compelling objects. Over the past 30 years, Philadelphia collectors Jill and Sheldon Bonovitz have assembled one of the finest private collections of outsider art in the United States. In 2011, their promise of the gift of nearly 200 works by American self-taught artists to the Philadelphia Museum of Art significantly increased its holdings in this field, establishing the Museum as one of the primary centers for the study of outsider art in the country. This exhibition presents the Bonovtizes’ promised gift in its entirety, and includes drawings, paintings, sculptures, and assemblages that range in date from the 1930s to 2010 by 27 artists who worked well outside of the boundaries of the modern and contemporary art world. Often produced in remote or rural places, the work of “self-taught” artists is inventive and remarkably varied in style, content, and execution. Working independently of familiar trends or movements, the artists featured in this exhibition drew upon other sources of inspiration, including the imagery found in advertisements, comics, magazine illustrations, and product packaging. In many cases, the subject of their work is inspired by memory, religious convictions, and the special character of a community or place. While many artists featured in the exhibition are not well known, some have achieved considerable reputations, such as the Reverend Howard Finster, whose inscription on one of his paintings was the source for the exhibition’s title: “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not” (Jeremiah 33:3). Well known to collectors of this material, but perhaps not to the general public, works by important figures such as William Edmondson, Martín Ramírez, and Bill Traylor can also be seen in the exhibition. Curator: Ann Percy, Curator of Drawings
Location: Dorrance Galleries Press Images
Fernand Léger and the Modern City
2013Returning to Paris after military service in World War I, the French painter Fernand Léger (1881–1955) encountered a changed city, infused with a new boisterous energy that would inspire him to create one of his landmark achievements, the monumental painting he would call The City (1919). The creation of this work signaled the beginning of one of the most experimental periods in Léger’s work, lasting through the mid-1920s, when the artist and his contemporaries challenged and redefined the practice of painting by bringing it into active engagement with the urban popular and commercial arts. This exhibition will examine the centrality of this masterpiece in Léger’s career and the European avant-garde in the years immediately after World War I. Comprising approximately 100 works, including loans from public and private collections in Europe and the United States, the exhibition will unite The City with other important paintings from this period by Léger with examples of film, theater design, graphic design, architecture, and decorative arts by the artist and his avant-garde colleagues, including Amédée Ozenfant, Le Corbusier, Francis Picabia, Man Ray, Gerald Murphy, and others. Curator: Anna Vallye, Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellow in Modern and Contemporary Art
Location: Dorrance Galleries Press Images
Through August 26, 2012
Uniting fabric sculptures and hand-printed textiles from the Museum’s collection, Secret Garden features three American artists whose works in fiber embrace the idea of a garden as a personal metaphor. Ted Hallman’s sculpture, The Inner Tree (1977), evokes the physical and spiritual world while addressing Hallman’s longstanding interest in healing and psychotherapy. A monumental knitted work, The Inner Tree is an experiment in textile structure, with knotted acrylic yarns over steel armatures. Sheila Hicks’ Wow Bush/Turmoil in Full Bloom (1977) is an installation piece constructed from nurses’s uniforms from the Cantonal Hospital in Lausanne, Switzerland, dyed in shades of lavender, yellow, and red. These garments have been torn into strips and knotted, meshed, and sewn together into a freestanding work that takes on any configuration and adapts to any space. Originally installed in 1977 at the Biennial of Tapestry in Lausanne, Wow Bush is often considered a turning point in the evolution of the tapestry medium. In Jim Hodges’ Every Touch (1995), thousands of artificial flowers were disassembled and reassembled in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia to create a dramatic lacelike curtain of cascading petals. The work’s title addresses the labor-intensive process of its shared construction and is also a meditation on the elusiveness of beauty. The three artists’ works are complemented by hand screenprints produced in the same period by textile designers Elenhank (Eleanor and Henry Kluck), June Groff, Jack Lenor Larsen, and D. D. and Leslie Tillett. The show coincides with the still lifes and landscapes in the Museum’s Van Gogh Up Close exhibition, the Philadelphia International Flower Show (March 4–11), and FiberPhiladelphia (March–April).Curator: Dilys Blum, The Jack M. and Annette Y. Friedland Senior Curator of Costume and Textiles
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Spain Gallery Press Images
The Art of German Stoneware
Through August 5, 2012From the fourteenth through eighteenth centuries, stoneware ceramics from modern-day Germany and the Low Countries were valued and widely traded throughout northern Europe. In the 1600s—the heyday of stoneware production—they found an enthusiastic market in colonial North America. The medium’s success is due to its stone-like durability and imperviousness to liquid, making it perfect for cooking, storage, and drinking vessels. This social aspect of stoneware ceramics explains the crisp relief decoration on sixteenth- and seventeenth-century pieces, which feature moralizing images or political figures and their coats of arms; later pieces often eschew such ornament for floral or geometric patterns inspired by Far Eastern porcelains imported to Europe. This exhibition examines German stoneware from its origins to later revivals in the nineteenth-century and celebrates its long-standing relationship with the city of Philadelphia. It features selections from the Museum, seventeenth-century Dutch pictures demonstrating the high status of stoneware, and a generous promised gift of around forty pieces of German stoneware from Dr. Charles W. Nichols.
This exhibition is supported by the Robert Montgomery Scott Fund for Exhibitions. The accompanying publication is generously supported by Charles W. Nichols and the Andrew W. Mellon Fund for Scholarly Publications at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.Curator: Jack Hinton, Assistant Curator of European Decorative Arts and Sculpture
Location: Rubenstein Gallery 254 Press Images
Collab: Four Decades of Giving Modern and Contemporary Design
Through Fall 2012Showcasing over 60 works of modern and contemporary design acquired through the generosity of Collab, this exhibition features outstanding examples of 20th- and 21st- century furniture, ceramics, glass, lighting and functional objects. It commemorates the 40th anniversary of Collab, a collaboration of design professionals and enthusiasts founded in 1971 to support the development of the modern and contemporary design collection at the Museum through acquisitions, special exhibitions, and programming, and includes important works by leading designers such as Alvar Aalto, Charles and Ray Eames, Frank Gehry, Ettore Sottsass, Jr., Philippe Starck and others. This exhibition was made possible by Lisa S. Roberts and David W. Seltzer. Curator: Diane Minnite, Collections and Research Assistant, European Decorative Arts after 1700
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Collab Gallery Press Images
Isamu Noguchi at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
The Anne d’Harnoncourt Sculpture Garden occupies a one-acre site built into the slope near the Museum’s West Entrance facing Kelly Drive and bordered by the Azalea Garden. The garden is open to the public during regular Museum hours. The initial installation in the garden consists of five works of varying scale by Isamu Noguchi (1904-1988). These sculptures, cut from such stone as granite, basalt, and Monazuru, are at once modern and evocative of the natural landscape. All of the works are on loan from the Noguchi Foundation in New York for two years. The installation is supplemented by additional loans of works by Sol LeWitt, Claes Oldenburg, Scott Burton, Thomas Schütte and Gordon Gund.
Curators: Carlos Basualdo, The Keith L. and Katherine Sachs Curator of Contemporary Art and Adelina Vlas, Assistant Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art
Location: The Anne d’Harnoncourt Sculpture Garden