NEW AND UPCOMING EXHIBITIONS
Collab: Four Decades of Giving Modern and Contemporary Design
Through fall 2012Showcasing over 60 out of the hundreds of works of modern and contemporary design acquired through the generosity of the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s support group for Modern and Contemporary Design, Collab: Four Decades of Giving Modern and Contemporary Design 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 in1971 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
Here and Now: Prints, Drawings, and Photographs by Ten Philadelphia Artists
Through December 4, 2012Here and Now: Prints, Drawings, and Photographs by Ten Philadelphia Artists presents works on paper by ten Philadelphia artists who reflect the remarkable strength and diversity of this city’s cultural community. The artists represented in the exhibition—Astrid Bowlby, Steven and Billy Blaise Dufala (who operate in collaboration), Vincent Feldman, Daniel Heyman, Isaac Tin Wei Lin, Virgil Marti, Joshua Mosley, Serena Perrone, Hannah Price, and Mia Rosenthal—range in age from 25 to 50 and utilize a broad range of pictorial strategies. Several also share an interest in addressing contemporary social and political problems in their work, from the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib to the challenges of everyday life in this city’s neighborhoods. In some cases, such issues are confronted in a direct and unflinching way, while others are addressed with edgy humor or ironically masked by great beauty. Curator: Innis Howe Shoemaker, The Audrey and William H. Helfand Senior Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs
Location: Berman and Stieglitz Galleries Press Images
Zaha Hadid: Form in Motion
Through April 2012Zaha Hadid, one of the most innovative architects of our time and the first woman to receive the renowned Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2004, has advanced the language of contemporary architecture and design through the exploration of complex fluid geometries and the use of cutting-edge digital techniques and manufacturing technologies. For the exhibition Zaha Hadid: Form in Motion (September 17, 2011 to March 2012), Hadid will create for the Museum an all-encompassing environment for the display of examples of the furniture, decorative arts, jewelry, and footwear that she has designed in recent years as well as the prototype for her Z-Car I (2007). This exhibition will be the first of its type in this country to feature her product designs. On November 19, Zaha Hadid will be honored with the Design Excellence Award given by Collab, a volunteer committee of design professionals and enthusiasts supporting 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, Exhibition Gallery Press Images
Tristin Lowe: Under the Influence
October 2011—January 2012Twelve-and-a-half feet in diameter, a moon-like sphere made of white wool felt formed by artist Tristin Lowe will make its Philadelphia debut this fall. Entitled Lunacy, this large-scale sculpture was created in 2010 and represents one of Lowe’s most ambitious works to date. The felt surface of Lowe’s moon was fashioned of 14 sections that were pieced together by hand evoking the moon’s pocked and cratered surface. To keep the structure inflated, Lowe used a sealed, airtight armature inside the sculpture. “I wanted to create something that was large enough to interact with the space and that could be encountered from multiple perspectives,” Lowe remarked about the installation when it was commissioned by the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, where it was first shown last year. “I think a lot about how a viewer comes upon a piece and engages with it.” Curator: Dilys Blum, The Jack M. and Annette Y. Friedland Senior Curator of Costumes and Textiles
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Spain Gallery Press Images
Zoe Strauss: Ten Years
January 14—April 22, 2012Zoe Strauss, a Philadelphia-based photographer with a growing international reputation, captures people in candid moments and in evocative settings that present a raucous, but poignant and often troubling portrait of American life. Zoe Strauss: Ten Years (January – April 22, 2012) is a mid-career retrospective of this acclaimed artist’s work and the first critical assessment of her decade-long project to exhibit her photographs annually in a space beneath a section of Interstate-95 in South Philadelphia. It will include approximately 150 prints and a slideshow component created by the artist, with additional images shown outside the Museum on billboards around the city.
Inspired by other photographers of the American scene such as Diane Arbus, Lewis Baltz, William Eggleston, Walker Evans, and Nan Goldin, Strauss’s work primarily focuses on American subjects. Much of her work has been done in and around Philadelphia, but she has also traveled widely throughout this country, sometimes taking photographs in the aftermath of catastrophic events such as Hurricane Katrina, as seen in Mom Were OK, taken in 2005 in Biloxi, Mississippi. Strauss has also taken as her principal subjects the issues of gender, American identity, addiction, desire, and simple survival, frequently using architecture and the landscape as well as the words on signs and graffiti-inscribed walls as her primary means of expression.Curator: Peter Barberie, The Brodsky Curator of Photographs, Alfred Stieglitz Center
Location: Berman and Stieglitz Galleries Press Images
Van Gogh Up Close
February 1—May 6, 2012In 1886, while living in Paris, Vincent van Gogh dramatically altered his manner of painting landscapes and still lifes. By experimenting with depth of field and focus and using shifting perspectives, he produced some of the most radical and original works of his career. Dominated in the foreground by close-up views of grasses, wheat sheaves, or tree trunks, van Gogh’s canvases in this period suggest a detailed study of nature and a concern with representing the sensory experience of being outdoors.
The exhibition explores the reasons and means by which van Gogh (Dutch, 1853–1890) made these innovative changes to his painting style. In Paris, the artist worked on a series of flower pieces and still lifes that enabled him to study familiar objects—like two crabs or a pair of shoes—closely and to focus on aspects of scale, angle, and color. Contact with Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painters including Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, Paul Signac, and others further inspired van Gogh to lighten his palette and to try different kinds of brushwork. He was also inspired by Japanese artists, who inspired him with a decorative use of color and flattened compositions, and who worked in close communion with nature, studying “the smallest blade of grass” to better comprehend nature as a whole.
The artist began to truncate objects to suggest the immediacy and closeness of his surroundings. The exhibition culminates in an audacious series of still lifes made outdoors in which the subjects range from extremely close views of a clump of iris or an almond branch or a moth.
The first exhibition devoted to this unexplored aspect of the artist’s work, Van Gogh Up Closewill present some 45 paintings borrowed from collections around the world. It is organized by the National Gallery of Canada in collaboration with the Philadelphia Museum of Art and will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with contributions by leading scholars in the field. The guest curator for the exhibition is van Gogh expert Cornelia Homburg, working with Anabelle Kienle at the National Gallery of Canada and Joseph J. Rishel and Jennifer A. Thompson at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.This exhibition is made possible by GlaxoSmithKline and Sun Life Financial. Additional support is provided by the Robert Lehman Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trusts, The Annenberg Foundation Fund for Major Exhibitions, The Kathleen C. and John J. F. Sherrerd Fund for Exhibitions, the National Endowment for the Arts, The Women’s Committee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Barbara B. and Theodore R. Aronson, David and Margaret Langfitt, Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Linck, Mr. and Mrs. John M. Thalheimer, Mrs. Eugene W. Jackson, and other generous individuals. Promotional support is provided by NBC 10 WCAU. The catalogue was funded, in part, by the Netherland-America Foundation. The exhibition is organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa. 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, and Jennifer Thompson, The Gloria and Jack Drosdick Associate Curator of European Painting and Sculpture before 1900 and the Rodin Museum
Location: Dorrance Galleries Press Images
Rembrandt’s Workshop and Circle
Through spring 2012While John G. Johnson preferred to collect masterpieces by lesser-known Dutch artists of the Golden Age, he did assemble a group of works attributed to Rembrandt, often on the advice of Wilhelm Valentiner, the great connoisseur, curator and friend who published extensively on Rembrandt and also catalogued Johnson’s Dutch and Flemish paintings (1914). Johnson did not attempt to secure “names, and names only at great expense” as he referred to the practice of trophy hunting by wealthy collectors, but rather assembled typical pieces suitable for a public collection. The choices he made, from the Finding of Moses and the small oil sketches of old men, to Rembrandt-esque works by artists associated with the master and other works by his pupils, tell us a great deal about Johnson’s own taste and the ideas about Rembrandt that prevalent during his lifetime. Curator: Lloyd deWitt, Associate Curator, John G. Johnson Collection
Location: Gallery 273
Gauguin, Cézanne, Matisse: Visions of Arcadia
June 20 to September 3, 2012Shortly after it was completed in 1898, Paul Gauguin’s mural-scale masterpiece Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston) was exhibited in Paris at the art gallery of Ambroise Vollard. At that moment, Paul Cézanne was in Paris working on a portrait of the art dealer and Henri Matisse was just then deciding to abandon his legal studies in the French capital for a career in art. To what degree Cézanne or Matisse were aware at that moment of Gauguin’s vast representation of a pastoral theme—his vision of Arcadia— is far from clear, but to examine this monumental painting work in relation to Cézanne’s largest and most ambitious work, The Large Bathers (1906, Philadelphia Museum of Art), and Matisse’s equally grand-scaled Bathers by a River (1909-1917, The Art Institute of Chicago) is to embark on a journey to the very foundations of modern art.
Gauguin, Cézanne, Matisse: Visions of Arcadia will place these legendary paintings in dialogue with each other, and in doing so explore the potent theme of Arcadia—the idea of an earthly paradise—in French painting during the two decades leading up to the first World War and also the attraction it held many of the leading figures in the development of modern art. The exhibition will include significant paintings by Picasso, Matisse, and Derain as well as other leading artists of this period such as Albert Gleizes, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, and Paul Signac that can be understood as responses to the challenge of giving contemporary expression to the timeless—and deeply human—ideal of Arcadia.The exhibition is organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, its only venue. The exhibition is supported in part by Mrs. Louis C. Madeira IV, The Pew Charitable Trusts, The Annenberg Foundation Fund for Exhibitions, The Robert Montgomery Scott Fund for Exhibitions, and The Kathleen C. and John J. F. Sherrerd Fund for Exhibitions. 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
Shipwreck! Winslow Homer and The Life Line
September—December 2012Engaging age-old themes of peril at sea and the power of nature, Winslow Homer’s masterpiece The Life Line (1884) is the center of an exhibition about the making and meaning of an iconic American image of rescue. One of the great popular and critical successes of the artist’s career, The Life Line anchors a selection of more than 50 works that celebrate modern heroism and the thrill of unexpected intimacy between strangers thrown together by disaster.
Arranged by theme, Shipwreck! includes paintings, etchings, engravings, sketches and ceramics encompassing all manner of disastrous marine scenarios and ranging in date from a 1640 painting by Bonaventura Peeters (Flemish, active Antwerp, 1614 - 1652) to Homer’s final exploration of the rescue theme in the 1890s.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
Isamu Noguchi at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
Through summer 2012
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
Tailoring Philadelphia: Tradition and Innovation in Menswear
Through October 16, 2011
Drawn from the Museum’s rich collection of menswear, this exhibition focuses on one of Philadelphia’s most important industries in the late 19th and early 20th centuries: tailoring. More than 15 garments created by Philadelphia tailor Francis Toscani (1915–1973) are on view, supplemented by a selection of works by other local tailors. These pieces—including a frock coat, morning ensemble, and dinner jacket—illustrate the traditional forms of men’s suits in the early- to mid-20th century.
As a child, Toscani learned the art of tailoring from his father, and by the 1960s he was chief designer for H. Daroff and Sons, one of the nation’s largest manufacturers of men’s apparel, producing more than 1 million men’s suits each year under labels such as Botany 500 and Worsted-Tex. Toscani’s designs often challenged the conventions of traditional tailoring by incorporating unusual sleeves, pockets, and collars; interesting seaming and closures; and unexpected colors. Among the designer’s inventions is an ivory silk safari jacket (c. 1967) that converts via waist zipper to a formal mess-style coat. Toscani’s keen understanding of the nuances of men’s clothing styles is most apparent in his designs created especially for fashion shows, such as his “Half and Half” Suit (c. 1962–65), a pale-gray suit that features the cut and details of early 1960s fashions, executed in dark brown.
Curator: Kristina Haugland, The Le Vine Associate Curator of Costume and Textiles and Supervising Curator for the Study RoomPress Images
Location: Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, Costume and Textiles Study Gallery
Notations: Everyday Disturbances
Through June 2012
From the banal to the bizarre and the real to the surreal, the works in this installation survey the tensions, or disturbances, that arise out of a collective and subversive reimagining of the world as we know it. Since the 1980s, contemporary art produced in the West has shifted away from the ethereal or abstract and toward representation and materiality, emphasizing the imagery and presence of an object
Including works by Richard Artschwager, Petah Coyne, Rachel Harrison, Bruce Nauman, and Rona Pondick, some of the selections on view show a resurgent interest in Marcel Duchamp’s readymades (mass-produced items displayed as works of art), while others revisit the idea of appropriation, in which preexisting images and clichés of language are considered anew in updated contexts. Still others reinvent the conventions of portraiture through the raw and poetic casting of fragmented body parts, and camouflage materials to blur the line between handmade and commercial. Everyday Disturbances is part of Notations, 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 serves as a flexible tool to explore contemporary art.
Curators: Carlos Basualdo, The Keith L. and Katherine Sachs Curator of Contemporary Art and Erica Battle, Project Curatorial Assistant
Location: Gallery 176