Kamis, 31 Mei 2012

Art Knowledge News - Keeping You in Touch with the World of Art...

Art Knowledge News - Keeping You in Touch with the World of Art...

The Whitney Museum of American Art Presents a Major Lyonel Feininger Retrospective

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:49 PM PDT

artwork: Lyonel Feininger -  "Harbor Mole", 1913 - Oil on canvas  -  © Lyonel Feininger Family, LLC./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York - Carnegie Museum of Art

New York City.- The Whitney Museum of American Artis proud to present "Lyonel Feininger: At The Edge of the World" from June 30th through October 16th. "Lyonel Feininger: At the Edge of the World" is organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York in collaboration with the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, where it will be exhibited in 2012. The exhibition will be accompanied by a richly illustrated monograph with a feature essay that provides a broad overview of Feininger's career, tracing his relationships with movements and organizations that defined the development of modern art, including Cubism, the Blaue Reiter, the Blue Four, the Bauhaus, and Black Mountain College. Additional essays focus on Feininger's comics, his photographs, his musical compositions, and his reputation in Germany.

artwork: Lyonel Feininger - "Lady in Mauve" Oil on canvas - 100.5 × 80 cm. 1922 Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid. © Lyonel Feininger Family, LLC. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY. Born and raised in New York, Lyonel Feininger (1871–1956) moved at the age of sixteen to Germany, where he became one of the leading practitioners of German Expressionism and the Bauhaus. In the late 1930s, when the Nazi campaign against modern art forced him to flee back to New York after an absence of fifty years, his marriage of abstraction and recognizable imagery made him a beloved artist in the United States. Long acknowledged as a major figure of the Bauhaus,

Feininger is renowned for his romantic, crystalline paintings of architecture and seascapes. Less well known are the whimsical aspects of his work: his pioneering Chicago Sunday Tribune comic strips; his figurative, Expressionist compositions; his photographs; and his miniature hand-carved wooden figures and buildings, known as 'City at the Edge of the World'. This retrospective is the first in Feininger's native country in more than forty-five years, and the first ever to include the full breadth of his art.

Feininger was one of the very few fine artists also to draw comic strips as a cartoonist. His short-lived Chicago Tribune comic strips, The Kin-der-Kids and Wee Willie Winkie's World, were noted for their fey humor and graphic experimentation.

Feininger also had intermittent activity as a pianist and composer, with several piano compositions and fugues for organ extant.
His son, Andreas Feininger, became famous as a photographer of New York City.

As the preeminent institution devoted to the art of the United States, the Whitney Museum of American Art presents the full range of twentieth-century and contemporary American art, with a special focus on works by living artists. The Whitney is dedicated to collecting, preserving, interpreting, and exhibiting American art, and its collection—arguably the finest holding of twentieth-century American art in the world—is the Museum's key resource. The Museum's signature exhibition, the Biennial, is the country's leading survey of the most recent developments in American art. Innovation has been a hallmark of the Whitney since its beginnings. It was the first museum dedicated to the work of living American artists and the first New York museum to present a major exhibition of a video artist (Nam June Paikin 1982). Such figures as Jasper Johns, Cy Twombly, and Cindy Sherman were given their first museum retrospectives by the Whitney.

artwork: Lyonel Feininger - "Figures and Houses", circa 1949 - Painted wood, overall dimensions variable. Art Institute of Chicago, © Lyonel Feininger Family, LLC./Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY/VG Bild-Kunst

The Museum has consistently purchased works within the year they were created, often well before the artists became broadly recognized. The Whitney was the first museum to take its exhibitions and programming beyond its walls by establishing corporate-funded branch facilities, and the first museum to undertake a program of collection-sharing (with the San Jose Museum of Art) in order to increase access to its renowned collection. The Whitney's collection— comprising more than 19,000 paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, films, videos, and new media by more than 2,900 artists—contains some of the most significant and exciting work created by artists in the United States during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Visit the museum's website at ... http://whitney.org

"The Luminous Interval" Exhibition at The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:47 PM PDT

artwork: John Bock - "Palms", 2007 - Digital color video with sound (59 min. 14 sec.), car, and assorted objects. - Installation view: John Bock: Palms, REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater), Los Angeles,  Artwork © 2007 John Bock. All rights reserved.

Bilbao, Spain - Until September 11, 2011, the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is showing "The Luminous Interval: The D. Daskalopoulos Collection". "The Luminous Interval" presents the work of more than 30 international artists drawn from the D.Daskalopoulos Collection, one of the world's most significant private collections of contemporary art. The exhibition's title is derived from the writings of the Greek philosopher Nikos Kazantzakis (1883–1957), who envisioned life as a "luminous interval" during which decomposition and decay are necessary prerequisites to creation and renewal.

Djanogly Art Gallery exhibits 'The American Scene ~ From Hopper to Pollock'

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:45 PM PDT

artwork: Edward Hopper - 'House by the Railroad', 1925 - Museum of Modern Art

NOTTINGHAM, UK.- Djanogly Art Gallery presents The American Scene - From Hopper to Pollock, on view through April 19, 2009. The American Scene: From Hopper to Pollock features spectacular images of American society and culture made during a period of great social and political change from the early 1900s to 1960 and charts the emergence of a consciously American subject matter and artistic identity in the twentieth century.

Recent Paintings by world-renowned artist Odd Nerdrum at Forum Gallery

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:41 PM PDT

artwork: Odd Nerdrum - "Look at My Beauty". - Oil on canvas - Photo: Courtesy of Forum Gallery, NYC

NEW YORK, NY.- An exhibition of 13 recent paintings by world-renowned artist Odd Nerdrum is on view at Forum Gallery from March 8th through May 5th. The iconoclastic Norwegian painter is well known for compelling portraits, stark landscapes, and apocalyptic narratives that depict unearthly scenes. Influenced by Rembrandt and Caravaggio, Nerdrum is admired internationally for his unequalled skill and technique, as well as his extraordinary subject matter, which transports the viewer to another time and place. In his new body of work made in the last four years, Nerdrum continues his exploration of the universal human condition revealing danger, misery, struggle, fear, helplessness, and yet, at times, optimism, as his figures all possess a fierce integrity in the face of adversity. In You See We Are Blind, three women are seated in a primeval world, holding sticks to help guide them, perhaps as they await an unlikely rescue. Two of the women are in conversation, while the third is deep in thought, the down turned corners of her mouth revealing a painful sadness.

In Stranded, the vulnerable mother and child, sleeping in a vast desert-like wasteland, are bathed in a golden light offering protection from the wilderness. In another painting, Night Jumper, four figures sleep around a fire in an inhospitable world, while one appears above them, magically suspended in the air, as if the fire has propelled the jumper upward.

Nerdrum has said that the figures in his work represent, "modern man having returned to primeval society in his flight from civilization. He no longer has any roots in our time. He is back in a prehistoric existence."

artwork: Odd Nerdrum - "Egg Snatchers", oil on canvas, 70 1/2 x 79 1/2 inches Courtesy of Forum Gallery in New York City

In his 2001 book on Odd Nerdrum, Richard Vine writes, "The anxious dialectic between self and world, self and group, will go on, Nerdrum's images attest, for as long as the human race persists. The sea, that enduring metaphor for eternity and the fathomless unconscious, laps at many of his scenes. ... Thus on the luminal shore between land and sea, time and eternity, consciousness and unconsciousness, the wanderers pause to confront the realm from which all life emerged. … The implicit sexuality of their quest, made manifest in those pictures where the actors are pregnant, highlights the aloneness one can feel even in the most passionate encounters, even at the climactic moment of putative fusion."

Odd Nerdrum lives and works in Maisons-Laffitte , France , near Paris . He was born in 1944 to Norwegian parents who were working in Sweden as Resistance fighters during World War II. The family moved back to Norway after the war. Nerdrum studied classical painting at the Art Academy of Oslo and later, with Joseph Beuys at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. As Nerdrum's work has become known internationally, he has inspired, at times, what has been described as a devotion bordering on worship among his students. A painting by Odd Nerdrum influenced a scene in the 2000 science fiction film The Cell. A traveling retrospective was organized by Oslo 's Astrup Fearnley Museum in 1998. Work by Nerdrum can be found in major public collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden , Washington , D.C.; Walker Art Center , Minneapolis ; and the National Gallery, Oslo .

Visit the Forum Gallery at : www.http://forumgallery.com/

Six New World Auction Records Set at Christie’s NY sale of Impressionist & Modern Art

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:38 PM PDT

artwork: Claude Monet (1840-1926) - Le Pont du chemin de fer à Argenteuil - Signed 'Claude Monet' (lower left) Oil on canvas - 60 x 98.4 cm. - Painted in 1873 - Photo courtesy of Christie's

NEW YORK CITY - The evening's sale of Impressionist and Modern Art at Christie's New York totaled $277,276,000/£140,749,239/€178,887,742, Christie's third highest result ever for the category. The auction featured particularly strong results for both 19th and 20th century paintings and sculpture created by some of the leading masters of art history. The sale was 82% sold by value, 76% sold by lot.

The Cleveland Museum of Art Presents Prints From the John Bonedrake Donation

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:37 PM PDT

artwork: Louis Haghe - "Egypt and Nubia, Volume III: Approach of the Simoon. Desert at Gizeh (after David Roberts)", 1849 - Color lithograph - 47.6 x 63.5 cm. Collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art. On view in "A Passion for Prints: The John Bonebrake Donation" until January 29th 2012.

Cleveland, Ohio.- The Cleveland Museum of Art is pleased to present "A Passion for Prints: The John Bonebrake Donation" on view at the museum through January 29th 2012. "A Passion for Prints: The John Bonebrake Donation" features a selection of nearly 60 prints from the collection of John Corwin Bonebrake (1918-2011). John became a devoted print collector after joining the Print Club of Cleveland in 1961. An architect, John began by choosing images of cathedrals, castles, and other structures, but soon broadened his outlook to include a wide range of material. His outstanding collection of about 1,000 19th- and 20th-century graphics includes figural subjects as well as landscapes and works of historical interest executed in a range of printmaking techniques. Knowing his collection would eventually be donated to the museum, John sometimes made acquisitions to enhance strengths and fill gaps in the CMA's print collection.

Museum in Leuven Opens with New Building and Rogier van der Weyden Exhibition

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:34 PM PDT

artwork: Rogier van der Weyden - St Joseph, c. 1445 - © M-Leuven Oil on oak panel, 21 x 18,3 cm. / Museu Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon

LEUVEN, BELGIUM.- In 2002 the City of Leuven decided that the Vander Kelen-Mertens municipal museum should be substantially enlarged and adapted to meet modern-day requirements. In 2004 an international competition was launched and from the short-list of five the jury chose the Stéphane Beel firm of architects which has international experience of museum architecture. Stéphane Beel's past achievements include the Central Museum in Utrecht (1994/99) and the Rubens' House pavilion in Antwerp (1997). Current projects include extending the deSingel arts centre in Antwerp and renovating the Royal Museum for Central African in Tervuren.

The City Gallery Prague is Staging a Retrospective of Václav Radimský

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:32 PM PDT

artwork: Vaclav Radimsky - "Grazing (Brook in Giverny in Normandy, Autumn Mood)", circa 1899 - Oil on canvas - 110 x 180 cm. - Courtesy of Gallery Kodl. \ On view at the City Gallery Prague in  "Vaclav Radimsky (1867 - 1946)" until February 5th 2012.

Prague.- Earlier this year, sixty-five years had elapsed since the death of the landscapist Václav Radimský, and in the year 2012, one hundred and forty-five years will have passed from his birth. To mark these two anniversaries, City Gallery Prague is staging a major retrospective of his work in the galleries of the Municipal Library, and Arbor vitae is publishing Radimský´s first comprehensive monograph. "Vaclav Radimsky (1867 - 1946)" is on view through February 5th 2012. The present exhibition brings together around two hundred paintings, with a special place being assigned to the triptych "View of Kolín", a grandiose work of three by eight-and-a-half metres. Here, it also marks a watershed between the section featuring pictures created in France, and the part showing works painted by Radimský after his return to Bohemia.

Václav Radimský was a member of the first generation of Czech Impressionist. Unlike most of his peers who embraced the Impressionist style, however, he was not a pupil of Julius Marák. Rather, he studied at Eduard von Lichtenfels´ private school of landscape painting in Vienna, which he followed up by a brief stint with Eduard Schleich in Munich, before setting out for Paris in 1888. At the behest of the painter Zdenka Braunerová he moved to Barbizon, probably in 1891, where he made a first-hand acquaintance with French Impressionist painting, and in particular with the output of Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro which he took as his model. Monet, by then a celebrated artist, lived in Giverny, surrounded by a large colony of painters who had gathered there from around the globe. From 1895 they were joined by a Czech artist with an Austrian passport: Václav Radimský. Like the majority of artists based in Giverny, Radimský was initially lodged at the hotel Baudy, then took a house in town, and eventually settled in a disused flour-mill which he purchased in the village of Le Goulet. He set up his studio there, and also used a dinghy at anchor on the Seine as a floating studio, and in which he would reportedly be occasionally joined by Monet. It was there that Radimský did an extensive series of views of the Seine in different seasons of the year.

artwork: Vaclav Radimsky - "Fog Over London", circa 1912 - Oil on canvas - 62 x 74 cm. Courtesy of Gallery Kodl. - On view at the City Gallery Prague until February 5th 2012.

His favourite themes, however, were sunlit parts, views of the water surface, and reflections of trees in water, in all of which he focused on the rendition of flickering light, sunbeams, and the palette capturing a day´s atmosphere. Radimský built up a successful career in France. He exhibited his work at the Paris salons, in 1894 becoming the youngest artist ever to win an award, for the painting "Etudes de Fougères". In the following year, he received a medal in Rouen, and in 1900 another one, at the World Exhibition in Paris. At the same time, he maintained regular contacts with his native country, sending his works to exhibitions mounted by the Czech Fine Arts Association. His series of eighty-eight paintings on view at Prague´s Topi gallery in 1899 offered to the Czech public the first taste of the Impressionist style, and reproductions of his paintings were regularly published in the pages of the magazines Zlatá Praha, Svetozor, and Volné smery.

In Paris, Radimský married Louise Fromont, a native of Vernon, and he would likely have settled in France for the rest of his life, were it not for the First World War. Officially blacklisted as "hostile alien," he was at first jailed then interned, to be released only at the intercession of Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau who had previously purchased a painting by Radimský. Disillusioned by France, Radimský returned to his native country after the war, and settled in his birthplace, at the estate of Pašinka near Kolín, central Bohemia, which was then owned by his half-brothers. He went on living and working there until his death in 1946. When Radimský returned to Bohemia after the end of the First World War, Czech painting, including that produced by members of his own generation, was already on its way towards a new, different expression. Radimský remained alone in his continued adherence to the Impressionist tradition. His painting, ever permeated with light in keeping with its French model, and content-wise focused predominantly on the nature of the central part of the Elbe Valley, began to draw increasingly critical response. Radimský was a diligent artist, he worked hard, one exhibition following the next in close succession; all of them were selling shows, which accounts for the fact that the larger part of his output is today in private hands. Václav Radimský died of pneumonia in a hospital in Kolín, in 1946, aged seventy-nine. He and his wife, Louise, are buried in the family grave near the church in Kbel near Kolín.

artwork: Vaclav Radimsky - "The River l'Epte", 1897 - Oil on canvas - 170 x 200 cm. - Courtesy of the Gallery of Fine Arts in Ostrava. - On view at the City Gallery Prague until February 5th 2012.

The first impulse to establish the Prague city picture gallery arose from the pictorial department of the newly established Art Forum headed by Josef Mánes in the eitheen sixties. The main intention was public benefit as well as support of contemporary artists. The city council then began to buy their works even though only occasionally. The municipal collection proliferated gradually also thanks to gifts from individuals as well as institutions. A grand set of Jaroslav Cermák´s paintings from Hippolyta Gallait and a set of work of Václav Brožík from the knight Václav Špacek of Starburg enriched the collection on the turn of the 19th and 20th century. The idea of a city gallery in the capitol came to the forefront again after the constitution of the independent Czechoslovak Republic. At the end of the twenties in the newly built Municipal Library exhibition halls were assigned to the gallery. At around the same time, in 1928, the city of Prague obtained a generous gift from Alfons Mucha: the cycle of monumental canvases "The Slav Epic". The city council ensured a better systematic nature of the purchases for the intended gallery by establishing administrative procedures and in 1927 the sculptor Ladisla Šaloun became a permanent artistic consultant. Up until the beginning of World War II the gallery acquired many important and now classic works of the 20th century modern art, msotly by purhcasing works from exhibitions it hosted, including; E. Filla, R. Kremlicka, O. Kubín, J. Bauch, F. Muzika, J. Šíma, V. Špála, J. Štyrský, J. Zrzavý, carvings of O. Gutfreund, J. Wagner and others. After the war the plans to establish a city gallery gained intensity again in the second half of the fifties and the National Committee of Prague has been pointedly buying the works of contemporary artistic displays. Many years of effort and endeavor were fulfilled on May 1, 1963 when the City Gallery Prague was founded. Visit the gallery's website at ... http://www.citygalleryprague.cz

Museum Fritz Mayer van den Bergh exhibits Brueghel's " Mad Meg "

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:24 PM PDT

artwork: ' Mad Meg ' by Pieter Brueghel the Elder, 1561-62 Collection of Museum Fritz Mayer van den Bergh

Antwerp, Belgium - The museum preserves the art treasures that the Antwerp collector Fritz Mayer van den Bergh (1858-1901) was able to gather during his too short life. The lion's share of his collection and its most famous works illustrate the era with paintings of the Flemish Primitives, with altarpieces and monumental sculptures. Fritz Mayer van den Bergh was one of the first to show a special interest in Pieter Brueghel the Elder and was the discoverer of his "Mad Meg ".

National Portrait Gallery in Washington Presents "Calder's Portraits"

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:20 PM PDT

artwork: Alexander Calder with "Edgar Varese" and "Untitled", Saché, France by Ugo Mulas. Gelatin silver print, 1963. Courtesy Ugo Mulas Archives © Ugo Mulas Heirs. All rights reserved. Calder artwork in photograph © 2010 Calder Foundation, New York / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY

Best known for his abstract mobiles and stabiles, Alexander Calder (1898–1976) was also a prolific portraitist who created hundreds of likenesses over the course of his lifetime. An exhibition of these works is being shown at the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery March 11 through Aug. 14. "Calder's Portraits: A New Language" sheds light on an often-overlooked aspect of Alexander Calder's career and on broader narratives of 20th-century American culture. In addition to paintings and drawings, "Calder's Portraits" features a number of the artist's famed wire sculptures. Working with the unorthodox medium of wire, Calder shaped three-dimensional portraits, achieving nuanced likenesses and vivid characters. His inventive technique was referred to as "drawing in space" and reconceived both portraiture and sculpture. A critic writing for the Chicago Tribune in 1929 opined that "the longer one observes [Calder's sculpture] the more one is convinced … that here is a new language." "Sculpturing by Wire Is New Achievement of Alexander Calder at Galerie Billiet," Chicago Tribune.

The Elms Lesters Painting Rooms to exhibit "The Adam and Ron Show"

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:16 PM PDT

artwork: Ron English - Muslim Mickey, 2008 - Courtesy of Elms Lesters Painting Rooms
LONDON - The Elms Lesters Painting Rooms will present The Adam and Ron Show, on view May 2-31, 2008. When Adam Neate was still an unknown artist leaving his painted cardboard works out on the street, he wrote to Ron English in New York to say how much he admired his work. For the first time, The Adam and Ron Show brings together these two urban art painters, both masters of their own style, in a major heavyweight show at the Elms Lesters Painting Rooms.

artwork: Adam Neate, Orange Self Portrait, 2008, Courtesy of Elms Lesters, Painting Rooms, London The exhibition will include a 50' site-specific painting by Ron English, recreating Picasso's Guernica. Over the past few years, Ron has created dozens of versions of Picasso's masterpiece, transforming the original Spanish civilian characters into Disney characters, Peanuts characters, soccer players, schoolchildren, and many others. As part of this series he painted the world's largest version of Guernica at the Station Museum in Houston, being one foot longer and one foot wider than Picasso's original and featuring schoolchildren playacting the violent scene of the original.

Adam Neate is a fearless painter who is constantly experimenting with styles and techniques, and continually pushing forward with his work. Paintings selected for this forthcoming show will demonstrate how he is mastering the mediums of both cardboard and canvas, with complex layering and bold use of paint. As well as a series of his coveted self portraits, the show will include a collection of his narrative, social documentary paintings. His fluid brush strokes, and impeccable line are apparent in both his two dimensional pieces and his multi-layered three dimensional works.

Adam Neate's extraordinary development in the past 12 months has not gone unnoticed by international collectors, and his works are contended by major collectors and celebrities and lauded by international critics. Neate's work has recently sold impressively at both Sotheby's and Bonham's auction houses, exceeding original estimates up to tenfold.

artwork: Adam Neate, Published in 2007 by Elms Lester's, Signed & numbered by the artist, Printed on Hahnemuhle German, Etching 310gm paper, Edition size of 100 Adam Neate – Adam Neate first came to the public's attention by bounteously leaving thousands of his paintings on the street of London, for people to take, or leave, at will. Since then he has rapidly become Britain's most exciting young artist and a much heralded painter at the forefront of a radical new movement in contemporary art. Whilst the world is sitting up and taking notice of a host of emerging urban/ graffiti artists - Neate is a street artist with a difference. His work is technically expert and has won him acknowledgement from Tate, National Portrait Gallery and The National Gallery. Last August, Adam's first one man show at Elms Lesters, the sell-out exhibition entitled Paintings,Pots and Prints demonstrated his masterful use of different materials, garnering global interest; Adam's works have been included in major auctions of Contemporary and Urban Art in the past months. His gallery pieces, the majority of which are still painted on cardboard, have immediacy and a raw energy, through the use of aerosols, marker pens, and acrylic and gloss paints.

Ron English - Ron English first hijacked billboards when he was an art student as a way of displaying his art to as many people as possible – it was later that he realised he could make political statements by the same means. Since then Ron has 'pirated' or 'liberated' over one thousand billboards, replacing existing advertisements with his own hand-painted "subvertisements." getting his own socio-political messages across. He is recognised as the father of AGIT-POP, a hybrid of Pop Art that is fuelled by a more personal, hands-on socially responsible attitude. His gallery works on canvas contain an equally biting commentary whilst being flawlessly painted in a hyperreal style, loaded with the iconography of his generation. His paintings have been exhibited in galleries and museums worldwide and his work is included in prominent collections, including the Museum of Contemporary Art in Paris and the Whitney Museum in New York; few of them were also featured in Morgan Spurlock's film 'SUPER SIZE ME". His film "POPaganda: The Art and Crimes of Ron English" was released in 2006.

Salvador Dalí On Loan

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:13 PM PDT

artwork: Salvador Dali - 'The Persistence of Memory' - Photo: Courtesy of the Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí © Salvador Dalí, Fundació Gala- Salvador Dalí, VEGAP, Figueres, 2009 

FIGUERES, SPAIN - The Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí received the temporary loan of Salvador Dalí's most famous oil painting, The Persistence of Memory, also know as "The Soft Watches", thanks to its owner, the MoMA in New York. It will be seen in Room 22 until next 18 March and will coincide two weeks of January with the other temporary loan: the Metamorphoses of Narcissus, on show in Room 6, coming from the Tate Modern, London.

Thomas Kinkade ~ Painter of Light ~ Dies at 54

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:11 PM PDT

artwork: Thomas Kinkade and Director Michael Campus on the set of "Thomas Kinkade's The Magic Cottage" from 2008. On April 6, 2012, Thomas Kinkade died suddenly of natural causes while at home, according to his family. He was 54 years old

San Francisco (Associated Press).- Artist Thomas Kinkade once said that he had something in common with Walt Disney and Norman Rockwell: He wanted to make people happy. And he won success with brushwork paintings that focused on idyllic landscapes, cottages and churches — highly popular works that became big sellers for dealers across the United States. The self-described "Painter of Light," who died Friday at age 54, produced sentimental scenes of country gardens and pastoral landscapes in dewy morning light that were beloved by many but criticized by the art establishment.

The Morgan Library & Museum opens "In the Company of Animals"

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:09 PM PDT

artwork: Jacob Hoefnagel - "Orpheus Charming the Animals", 1613 - Watercolor and bodycolor, bordered in gold, on vellum. Collection of the Morgan Library & Museum, NY. -  On view in "In the Company of Animals" until May 20th.

New York City.- The Morgan Library & Museum is pleased to present "In the Company of Animals: Art, Literature, and Music", on view from March 2nd through May 20th. Animals have provided a particularly fertile source of inspiration for artists, writers, and composers for centuries. From the carving of ancient seals with fearsome lions and mythical beasts, to the depiction of the serpent in representations of Biblical scenes by such luminaries as Albrecht Dürer, to more recent portrayals of endearing animal figures in children's stories, such as Babar and Winnie the Pooh, animals are everywhere. This exhibition will explore the representation of animals—as symbols, muses, moral teachers, talking creatures, and beloved companions—in eighty works of art, demonstrating the varied roles animals have played in the hands of some of the most renowned artists represented in the Morgan's collections.

Animals are not always simply animals. They can represent gods, saints, myths, sins, temperaments, emotions, and ideas. Since ancient times, artists have repeatedly turned to animals to address eternal questions of life and meaning. The oldest work in the exhibition, a Mesopotamian cylinder seal used to make an impression when rolled over damp clay, is datable about 3500–3100 BC. Lions prowl across the surface of the inch-high engraved stone, symbolizing  the potential chaos of the natural world. Order is restored, however, by the one-eyed hero who grasps two lions upside-down. His domination over such feared creatures adds to his strength and power. The fall of Man as depicted in Albrecht Dürer's masterful engraving Adam and Eve, of 1504, is witnessed and aided by animals. A serpent twists itself around a branch to offer Eve the forbidden fruit as four creatures lie at the couple's feet. Jackson Pollock famously commented, "I am nature." Pollock's Untitled (Abstract Ram) dates about 1944, a time when the artist incorporated Jungian theories of the unconscious and imagery of the American Southwest into his work. The drawing is suggestive of a sheep-like animal with a circular horn, elongated head and muzzle, and swirls of curly wool. The exhibition includes three works related to Aesop, including the earliest known manuscript of his life and fables, made in southern Italy in the tenth or eleventh century. Similarly on view in the exhibition is a 1666 edition of the life and fables of Aesop, lavishly illustrated by one of the most accomplished animal and bird painters in seventeenth century England, Francis Barlow. Finally, a 1931 edition of Aesop's fables combines stories collected by the seventeenth-century English author Roger L'Estrange with fifty illustrations by American artist Alexander Calder.

artwork: Jackson Pollock - "Untitled (Abstract Ram)", circa 1944 Mixed media - 29 3/4" x 19 3/4" Collection of the Morgan Library & Museum, NY, -  © 2008 The Pollock-Krasner Foundation/Artists Rights Society (ARS), NYOn view until May 20th.

Storytellers have long used talking animals to highlight human foibles. Unlike the animals in fables and fairy tales, which maintain their animal characteristics, the talking creatures in this section of the exhibition blur the distinction between animal and human. George Orwell had a difficult time finding a publisher for Animal Farm, his tale of a utopia gone wrong, at the end of WWII. A first edition of the novel (eventually published in 1945) shows Orwell's original subtitle, Animal Farm: A Fairy Story. A life-long equestrian, Anna Sewell was appalled by the way horses, especially working horses, were often treated by their owners. She said that her purpose in writing Black Beauty, her only novel, was "to induce kindness, sympathy, and an understanding treatment of horses." Although a favorite among children, Jean de Brunhoff's Babar faces adult-size challenges. In his illustration for page nine of Histoire de Babar, the young elephant—not yet in his signature green suit—arrives at the edge of the city. The scene becomes melancholy when one realizes that Babar is isolated, his mother having just been killed by a hunter. One section presents works ranging from thirteenth-century Persia to twentieth-century America, including a number of examples from the Renaissance, when a new perspective on the natural world created a lasting interest in observing, categorizing, and understanding animals. Masters of the human figure, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn and Peter Paul Rubens also made a number of animal sketches. In the sixteenth century when Dutch artist Jacob de Gheyn sketched his Studies of a Frog, Dragonfly, and Fantastic Bird, creatures such as the unicorn and the griffin were still believed to exist. Even Leonardo da Vinci included the occasional dragon in his sketches. Also on display is an anonymous watercolor of a lynx and recumbent unicorn from a fifteenth-century model book—an essential point of reference for medieval artists who wished to depict animals—which shows a similar pairing of reality and myth.

John James Audubon is best known for his meticulous depictions of animals, such as his preparatory study for Gray Rabbit: Old male, female, and young, which later appeared in his The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America (1845–1848). One hundred fifty years after Elizabeth Barrett Browning described her relationship with her dog, Flush, David Hockney made a similar observation about his dachshunds, Boodgie and Stanley, noting, "These two dear little creatures are my friends...I notice the shapes they make together, their sadness and their delight". A nineteenth-century drawing by Nicolas Hüet depicts an unusual variety of companion, a giraffe known as Zarafa with her Sudanese caretaker, Atir. The giraffe was a political gift from Muhammed Ali, the Ottoman Viceroy of Egypt, to Charles X of France in an attempt to convince the King not to interfere in the war between the Ottoman Empire and the Greeks. After a two-year journey from Sudan to Paris (which included two boat rides and a 550 mile walk from Marseilles to Paris), Zarafa lived with Atir in the Jardin des Plantes for eighteen years, where he "slept within scratching reach of her head."

artwork: André Hellé - Illustration for Claude Debussy's "La boîte à joujoux: ballet pour enfants", ca 1913 Collection of the Morgan Library & Museum, On view in "In the Company of Animals" until May 20th.

Today, The Morgan Library & Museum is a complex of buildings of differing styles and periods covering half a city block. It began as an intimate palazzo-like structure designed by Charles Follen McKim to serve as the private library of financier Pierpont Morgan. "Mr. Morgan's library", as it became known, was built between 1902 and 1906 to the east of his New York residence at Madison Avenue and 36th Street. In the years since the Morgan's incorporation as a public institution in 1924, there have been several additions to the original library building. As the collections grew, the Annex was added in 1928, on the site of Morgan's home. In 1988, the mid-nineteenth-century brownstone on Madison Avenue and 37th Street, where J. P. Morgan, Jr., lived was also added to the complex. A garden court was built in 1991 to unite all three buildings in the complex. A century after the completion of the McKim building, The Morgan Library & Museum unveiled the largest expansion and renovation in its history. The Renzo Piano design integrates the three landmark buildings with three intimately scaled new pavilions constructed of steel-and-glass panels to create an accessible, inviting setting. Pierpont Morgan's immense holdings ranged from Egyptian art to Renaissance paintings to Chinese porcelains. For his library, Morgan acquired illuminated, literary, and historical manuscripts, early printed books, and old master drawings and prints. To this core collection, he added the earliest evidence of writing as manifested in ancient seals, tablets, and papyrus fragments from Egypt and the Near East. Morgan also collected manuscripts and printed materials significant to American history. Over the years—through purchases and generous gifts—the Morgan has continued to actively acquire rare materials as well as important music manuscripts, a fine collection of early children's books and manuscripts, and materials from the twentieth century (as well as earlier periods). Nevertheless the focus on the written word, the history of the book, and master drawings has been maintained. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.themorgan.org

Indianapolis Museum of Art Announces Major Design Initiatives

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:07 PM PDT

artwork: Frank Gehry - Bubbles chaise lounge from the Experimental Edge Series, New City Editions,1979/1986, Corrugated cardboard -  27 w x 78 d x 34 h. - Photo courtesy of Wright & Brian Franczyk Photography

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - The Indianapolis Museum of Art announced several major design initiatives, including: The acquisition of 37 new works, 19 of which come from the Liliane and David M. Stewart Collection in Montreal. Liliane Stewart, with her late husband David, amassed one of the most important international twentieth and twenty-first-century design collections in North America. The creation of the IMA Design Center, a retail space opening in November 2008 which will offer contemporary, sustainable design products for sale.

AKN Editor Visits The Traditional Wallraf-Richartz Museum In Cologne, Germany

Posted: 30 May 2012 10:59 PM PDT

The Wallraf-Richartz Museum is one of the great traditional art galleries in Germany. It is located in Cologne, Germany and houses a collection of fine art from the medieval period to the early twentieth century. Part of its collection was used for the establishment of Museum Ludwig in 1976. The museum lies at the heart of the Old Town, within view of the cathedral, right next to the historical city hall. Virtually every school of style and historical period of European painting is also represented here, from the Dutch masters to the late Impressionists of France. The Cologne merchant Johann Heinrich Richartz (1795-1861), who gave his name to the museum, supported the first public museum building which was opened in 1861. After the destruction of the building in the Second World War the museum was housed in 1957 in a new building designed by Rudolf Schwarz and Josef Bernard. After a few years in a modern museum building, which from1986 housed both the Wallraf-Richartz-Museum and the Museum Ludwig, at the beginning of 2001 the museum moved into a new building designed by Oswald Mathias Ungers. A "permanent loan" of numerous Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings by the Swiss collector Gerard Corboud was made a short time later. The new building in the quarter between the town hall and Gürzenich stands on an important site in the history of art: In the Middle Ages this was the artistic centre of the cathedral city with the workshops of the goldsmiths and painters of Cologne. Once the museum moved into their modern new building in 2001 the name was changed for marketing purposes to: "Wallraf, The Museum." Visitors approaching the museum from the cathedral come up against a quiet façade of classical proportions, built on the basis of the ancient canons on a massive basalt base, marked with a series of windows. The facade is then developed toward the top as a blind wall with only a few panoramic windows all in a row in one corner. The smooth, clear upper wall, corresponding to the exhibition halls, is the result of geometric partitioning of the artistic work of Ian Hamilton Finlay. Rectangular slabs of slate arranged in two parallel rows are repeated at intervals all over the tuff block of the complex, revealing to passers-by the names of the artists whose works are kept in that area. On the western side, the building is divided into three staggered towers echoing the church bell tower: they house offices and a multifunctional hall and are clearly separated from the museum block itself. The entrance immediately evident from outside, follows the path of the old medieval road where artist Stefan Lochner lived and on the underground floor. The organization of space inside is very simple: a large entrance hall offers access to the three exhibition floors, divided on the basis of strictly chronological criteria, from the Middle Ages to the nineteenth century. The atrium is developed on the basis of the template formed by square units, multiplied and divided over and over again against the luminous ceiling and made up of pillars forming an orderly grid. The works in this internationally prominent collection are not contained in a single hall, but in rooms of different sizes, arrangements and colors. Each floor has its own layout and a color identifying a period in history: terracotta for the Middle Ages, Verona green for the Renaissance, Carrara grey for the nineteenth century. A famous collection of art from the 13th to the 19th centuries occupies a postmodern cube designed by Cologne's own Oswald Mathias Ungers. Works are presented chronologically, with the oldest on the 1st floor where standouts include brilliant examples from the Cologne School, known for its distinctive use of color. Upstairs are Dutch and Flemish artists like Rembrandt and Rubens, Italians such as Canaletto and Spaniards including Murillo. The 3rd floor focuses on the 19th century with evocative works by Caspar David Friedrich and Lovis Corinth. Thanks to a permanent loan from Swiss collector Gèrard Corboud, there's now also a respectable collection of impressionist paintings, including some by heavyweights Monet and Cézanne. A donation by Swiss collector Gèrard Corboud in 2001 greatly expanded the museum's stock of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works. The museum also have a 20th Century collection of American Pop Art Retrospective with works from artist like James Rosenquist. The museum carries out a permanent research and restoration program and on February 14, 2008, the Wallraf-Richartz Museum announced that "On the Banks of the Seine by Port Villez", attributed to Claude Monet, was a forgery. The discovery was made when the painting was examined by restorers prior to an upcoming Impressionism exhibition. X-ray and infrared testing revealed that a "colorless substance" had been applied to the canvas to make it appear older. The picture was acquired by the museum in 1954. The museum, which will keep the forgery, still has five authentic Monet paintings in its collection. Visit website:_ www.wallraf.museum/

artwork: Alexandre Cabanel - "Birth of Venus", 1863 - Oil on canvas - Paris, Musée d'Orsay

An exhibition dedicated to one of the foremost artists of 19th century France, Alexandre Cabanel (1823 - 1889) will take place from February 4 to May 15 2011 at the Wallraf-Richartz Museum. The retrospective, "The Tradition of Beauty" will present more than 60 works (paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and sculptures). Star designer Christian Lacroix has been commissioned to design a special interior exclusively for the exhibition. Lacroix studied at the Academy of Arts in Montpellier the hometown of Cabanel and regards the painter as one of his all-time favorites. The organizers have assembled paintings, photographs, sculptures and cinema excerpts in order to reconstruct the vibrant 19th century in which Cabanel lived, a time devoted to the cult of the precious and the beautiful. The exhibition comprises almost 250 artworks, many of which have been loaned from some of the most prestigious museums in the world. Alongside the principal character of Alexandre Cabanel, the great masters of the classical tradition and their work are also highlighted. Originally from Montpellier, Cabanel was one of the most influential academic painters of the Second Empire and his fame was clinched when Napoleon III picked up his "Birth of Venus" at the 1863 Paris Salon. Still his most famous work, the painting is now housed at the Musée d'Orsay. A savvy businessman as well as a skillful painter, Cabanel sold the reproduction rights to the art dealer and publisher Adolphe Goupil. In addition to producing lucrative engravings based on "The Birth of Venus," Goupil had an in-house artist make two smaller copies of the work, which Cabanel later retouched and signed as part of his agreement with Goupil. Showered with awards — including a first-class medal at the 1855 Paris World's Fair and a medal of honor at the 1865 Paris Salon — Cabanel was esteemed not only for his portraits but also for his dramatic depictions of figures such as Phèdre, Cleopatra, and Othello. He was made a professor at Paris' Ecole des Beaux-Arts in 1864, training hundreds of young artists during his career, and becoming a major force in 19th-century artistic life.

artwork: Alexandre Cabanel - "The Fallen Angel", 1847 - Oil on canvas - Montpellier, Musée Fabre

Cabanel was an excellent painter and a view of his work shows us once again that "academic", a term referring to training, and especially "pompier" , an adjective of still debatable origin, are words which do not reflect a pictorial reality since the styles of the different artists included in this so-called movement are each so different. In fact, and this is at times suggested in the catalogue (notably in Stephen Bahn's essay), Cabanel might be associated to Romanticism. His subjects are often drawn from Shakespeare or themes treated in the first half of the 19th century by Romantic artists. The manner frequently recalls that of Chassériau, more than Delacroix. When one compares his angels in Paradise Lost to Chassériau's, or his figure of Veleda to some of this painter's heroines, there are undoubtedly a certain number of analogies which merit further study. Cabanel was fortunate in that he was quickly taken on by Alfred Bruyas whom he had met in Montpellier at a young age. While in Italy, he had painted three works for him which correspond by their subject and size, La Chiaruccia, a young Italian peasant girl carrying a basket of flowers, A Thinker, a Young Roman Monk and finally, Albaydé, his first painting with a title inspired by a Romantic literary work, Les Orientales by Victor Hugo. The last is a particularly remarkable canvas, notably for its subtle colors and sensuality, devoid of any vulgarity. Orestes, his first work sent from Rome in 1846, is a beautiful painting due to its atmosphere and a palette of brown shades. The awkwardness of the drawing of the right leg, much too short thus disrupting the balance of the composition, seems surprising however for an already experienced painter. The painting dispatched in 1847, on the other hand, The Fallen Angel, is an authentic masterpiece of late Romanticism, as is also, in a very different genre, the last work he sent, in 1850, and for which the Musée Fabre has a second version, The Death of Moses. The fact that he has been criticized for obviously borrowing from Raphael (for God the Father) and Michelangelo (for Moses) is absurd. Painters from all periods have always found inspiration in their illustrious predecessors. This is in no way a pastiche or a copy, but in fact a reinterpretation. Cabanel studied art carefully while in the Eternal City and profited from these contacts. Thus armed and in full possession of his talent, he was set to conquer Paris when his stay there ended. While Impressionism precipitated the collapse of the system of Fine Arts, the confrontation of his Birth of Venus and the Luncheon on the Grass by Manet is one of the most famous artistic controversy over the nude in the nineteenth century. Hundreds of young artists formed in his studio: Aristide Maillol, Bastien-Lepage, Eugene Carriere ... They have perpetuated his teachings in their own way and open new perspectives to the tradition of beauty.

This Week in Review in Art Knowledge News

Posted: 30 May 2012 10:58 PM PDT

This is a new feature for the subscribers and visitors to Art Knowledge News (AKN), that will enable you to see "thumbnail descriptions" of the last ninety (90) articles and art images that we published. This will allow you to visit any article that you may have missed ; or re-visit any article or image of particular interest. Every day the article "thumbnail images" will change. For you to see the entire last ninety images just click : here .

When opened that also will allow you to change the language from English to anyone of 54 other languages, by clicking your language choice on the upper left corner of our Home Page.  You can share any article we publish with the eleven (11) social websites we offer like Twitter, Flicker, Linkedin, Facebook, etc. by one click on the image shown at the end of each opened article.  Last, but not least, you can email or print any entire article by using an icon visible to the right side of an article's headline.

This Week in Review in Art News

Rabu, 30 Mei 2012

Art Knowledge News - Keeping You in Touch with the World of Art...

Art Knowledge News - Keeping You in Touch with the World of Art...

The Seattle Art Museum showcases "Gauguin and Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise"

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:32 PM PDT

artwork: Paul Gauguin - "The Bathers", 1897 - Oil on canvas - 23 3/4" x 36 3/4" - Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC On view at the Seattle Art Museum in "Gauguinand Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise" until April 29th.

Seattle, Washington.- The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) is proud to present the only United States stop for "Gauguin and Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise", a landmark show highlighting the complex relationship between Paul Gauguin's work and the art and culture of Polynesia. The exhibition, on view through April 29th, includes about 50 of Gauguin's brilliantly hued paintings, sculptures and works on paper, which are displayed alongside 60 major examples of forceful Polynesian sculpture. Organized by the Art Centre Basel the show is comprised of works on loan from some of the world's most prestigious museums and private collections.

Recognized for his distinctive palette and the evocative symbolism of his subject matter, Paul Gauguin (1848–1903) is one of the most influential and celebrated artists of the late nineteenth century and was a leader in the Post-Impressionist movement that rejected Impressionism's emphasis on visual observation. Along with Vincent van Gogh, Emile Bernard and others, Gauguin sought to bring timelessness and poetry into painting. From very early in his career, Gauguin yearned for the exotic in both his life and his work, leading to two significant sojourns in French Polynesia – a two-year stay in Tahiti beginning in 1891 and a second trip to Tahiti, and later, to the even more remote Marquesas Islands. Gauguin and Polynesia aims to contribute not only to a deeper understanding of Gauguin's work, but also to further an understanding of Polynesian culture. Gauguin and Polynesia traces Gauguin's journey from bourgeois stockbroker to full-time artist, while at the same time tracing Polynesia's artistic evolution during the 18th and 19th centuries.

artwork: Paul Gauguin - "Three Tahitians", 1898 or 1899 - Oil on canvas - 73 x 94 cm. - Collection of the National Galleries of Scotland  -  At the Seattle Art Museum until April 29th 2012.

Paul Gauguin's biography reveals a complicated personal journey. Born June 7, 1848, to Clovis and Aline Gauguin, the yearning for adventure was likely fueled by an early experience in Peru. In 1849, the Gauguin family left Napoleonic France due to a political climate hostile to the liberal leanings of Gauguin's journalist-father. En route to Peru, Clovis died of a heart attack, leaving Aline and their two children to complete the journey alone. Returning to France in 1857, Aline Gauguin struggled to support her children, and Paul was eventually enrolled in a prestigious boarding school in Orléans. At the age of 17, the young man joined the merchant marines and, later, the French Navy, in positions that would take him around the world. He eventually settled into a position as a stockbroker in Paris, where he met and married a young Danish woman named Mette Sophie Gad and had five children in quick succession. Gauguin showed an interest in painting, and collected art in the 1870s, but it was with the collapse of the stock market in 1882 that he decided to pursue his own career as an artist. Gauguin and Polynesia opens with a look at early paintings and sculptures Gauguin created in the late 1880s when he lived in Brittany. Through his life in Brittany and a five-month trip to the Caribbean island of Martinique, Gauguin sought a less costly and simpler lifestyle to fuel his artistic practice. Rejecting the Impressionists' focus on momentary observation, Gauguin sought to impart a decorative timelessness through the "primitive" people and places he encountered both in the Caribbean and in rural France. It was during this period that Paul Gauguin developed a short-lived working relationship with Vincent van Gogh which would help define the direction Gauguin's life and art would take from the 1890s through the end of his life. Gauguin and Polynesia includes a gallery of Polynesian sculptures similar to those that Gauguin would have seen at the World's Fair.

artwork: Paul Gauguin - "Self-Portrait Dedicated to Carrière", 1888-89 Oil on canvas, 46.5 x 38.6 cm. - Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC  -  On view until April 29th.

This brief exposure to the cultures of French Polynesia as well as that of other European colonies, notably Cambodia and Java, provided Gauguin with the final nudge he needed to pursue his idea of creating a Studio of the Tropics, where he and other artists could live and work without the constraints of financial hardship or the formality of life in Western Europe. Very shortly after the Fair, he made several unsuccessful attempts to secure government posts in present-day Vietnam and Madagascar before he successfully received a grant to visit Tahiti, and he left France on April 1, 1891. When Gauguin arrived in Papeete, Tahiti in June 1891, he expected to find himself immersed in a "voluptuous" culture, a paradise of gentle populations set in nature's abundance. In fact, what he found was a local culture that had been in decline for more than a century, due to disease, famine, warfare and a prohibition on traditional art forms enforced by the Catholic Church, along with the difficult dealings of a colonial bureaucracy much like that he had left behind in France. Deeply disappointed at finding so much of what he had sought to escape and so little of the paradise he had expected, Gauguin enacted his own, restless search for Polynesian art, and introduced his imperfect notions of Polynesian religion and culture into the works of art he sent back to Europe.

The exhibition includes numerous paintings in which Gauguin created the environment he had hoped to find. A motif from a small set of Marquesan ear ornaments, for example becomes a fence keeping viewers from entering a sacred precinct  in Parahi te Marae (The Sacred Mountain), (1892), where a tiki is installed on a Tahitian hillside  where heightened colors prevail. Gauguin and Polynesia includes specific Polynesian art alongside Gauguin's unique permutations of their imagery and meaning, allowing a more fully informed investigation of the tension between Gauguin's representations and the true evolution of the Polynesian cultures in which he lived. Gauguin and Polynesia comes to SAM after opening at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen (September 24– December 31, 2011). The exhibition was curated by Suzanne Greub, and organized by the Art Centre Basel in collaboration with the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen and the Seattle Art Museum in Seattle, WA, USA. Curators in Seattle are Chiyo Ishikawa, Susan Brotman Deputy Director for Art and Curator of European Painting & Sculpture, and Pam McClusky, Curator of Art of Africa & Oceania at SAM.

artwork: Paul Gauguin - "Parahi Te Marae (The Sacred Mountain)", 1892 - Oil on canvas - 66 x 88.9 cm. Collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. On view at the Seattle Art Museum in "Gauguin and Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise" until April 29th.

The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) maintains three major facilities: its main museum in downtown Seattle; the Seattle Asian Art Museum (SAAM) in Volunteer Park on Capitol Hill, and the Olympic Sculpture Park on the central Seattle waterfront, which opened on January 20, 2007. The SAM collection has grown from 1,926 pieces in 1933 to nearly 25,000 as of 2008. Its original museum provided an area of 25,000 square feet, the present facilities provide 312,000 square feet plus a 9-acre park. SAM traces its origins to the Seattle Fine Arts Society (organized 1905) and the Washington Arts Association (organized 1906), which merged in 1917, keeping the Fine Arts Society name. In 1931 the group renamed itself as the Art Institute of Seattle. The Art Institute collection formed the core of the original SAM collection and the institute was responsible for managing art activities when the museum first opened. The SAM collection includes approximately 25,000 pieces. Among them are Alexander Calder's "Eagle" (1971) and Richard Serra's "Wake" (2004), both at the Olympic Sculpture Park; Cai Guo-Qiang's "Inopportune: Stage One" (2004), a sculpture constructed from cars and sequenced multi-channel light tubes on display in the lobby of the SAM Downtown; "The Judgment of Paris" (c. 1516-18) by Lucas Cranach the Elder; Mark Tobey's "Electric Night" (1944); Yéil X'eenh (Raven Screen) (c. 1810), attributed to the Tlingit artist Kadyisdu.axch'; Do-Ho Suh's "Some/One" (2001); and a coffin in the shape of a Mercedes Benz (1991) by Kane Quaye of Ghana. There are early Italian paintings by Dalmasio Scannabecchi, Puccio di Simone, Giovanni di Paolo, Luca Di Tomme, Bartolomeo Vivarini, and Paolo Uccello. There are paintings by V. Sellaer, Jan Molenaer, Emanuel De Witte, Luca Giordano, Luca Carlevaris, Armand Guillaumin, and Camille Pissarro. This museum also has a large collection of Twentieth Century American paintings by Jacob Lawrence and Mark Tobey. There is an appreciable collection of Aboriginal Australian Art. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.seattleartmuseum.org/

The SUArt Galleries Shows Print Artwork Published by Universal Limited Art Editions

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:31 PM PDT

artwork: Jason Middlebrook - "Lucy's Wild Wild West", 2004 - Lithograph in 9 colors on Arches Cover - Courtesy of Universal Limited Art Editions. On view at the Syracuse University Art Galleries in "Pressing Print: Universal Limited Art Editions 2000-2010" from February 2nd until March 18th.

Syracuse, New York. The Syracuse University Art Galleries (SUArt) is proud to present "Pressing Print: Universal Limited Art Editions 2000-2010", on view from February 2nd through March 18th. The exhibition chronicles the recent decade of artwork published by the renowned American printmaking workshop Universal Limited Art Editions [ULAE]. The exhibition assembles new print works created by the 20th century masters of American Art (Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg and Helen Frankenthaler) and emerging artists recently selected to collaborate at Universal (Zachary Wollard, Amy Cutler and Tam Van Tran). More than just a survey of artwork published since 2000, Pressing Print is a specific examination of ULAE's ongoing commitment to innovative approaches and techniques in contemporary printmaking.

Christie's New York to offer Prints & Multiples: A Range of Style the Summer Sale

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:29 PM PDT

artwork: AFTER FERNAND LEGER (1881-1955) - Parade (Saphire 271) - Lithograph in colors, 1953, on Arches, numbered 96/300, published by Maeght Éditeur, Paris, with their blindstamp, with margins. - L. 19 x 26½ in. (483 x 673 mm.)

NEW YORK, NY.- Christie's presents the mid-season Prints & Multiples sale on July 22. Comprised of a cross section of movements and styles, this well selected offering includes work by James Jacques, Joseph Tissot, James Abbott McNeill Whistler, Paul Gauguin, Joan Miró, Sam Francis, Robert Indiana, Roy Lichtenstein, Jeff Koons, Ed Ruscha and Rachel Whiteread, among others. This sale is the ideal opportunity to begin or expand collections for new bidders and seasoned print enthusiasts alike. A broad selection of Pop and abstract art complete the Prints & Multiples sale. A unique example is A Dedicated Follower of Fashion (estimate: $3,000-5,000) by Richard Hamilton, a founder of the Pop movement in Britain.

Royal Academy of Arts announces Exhibition by Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797 – 1861)

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:28 PM PDT

artwork: Utagawa Kuniyoshi - Hatsuhana prays under a waterfall, c. 1842 - Colour woodblock, oban 36.4 x 24.8 cm - American Friends of the British Museum (The Arthur R. Miller Collection) 15606

LONDON - The Royal Academy of Arts will present an exhibition on one of the greatest Japanese print artists, Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797 – 1861). Featuring over 150 works, the exhibition will present Kuniyoshi as a master of imaginative design. It will reveal the graphic power and beauty of his prints across an unprecedented range of subjects highlighting his ingenuous use of the triptych format. The majority of the exhibition will be drawn from the outstanding collection of Professor Arthur R. Miller which has recently been donated to the American Friends of the British Museum. This is the first major exhibition in the United Kingdom on Utagawa Kuniyoshi since 1961, on view 21 March through 7 June, 2009. 

artwork: Utagawa Kuniyoshi - Mitsukuni Defies the Skeleton-spectre Conjoured up by Princess Takiyasha, 1845 - Colour woodblock, oban triptych (centre sheet) 37.2 x 25.3 cm. - The British MuseumKuniyoshi was a major master of the 'floating world', or Ukiyo-e school of Japanese art, and, together with Katsushika Hokusai (1760 – 1849), Utagawa Hiroshige (1797 – 1858) and Utagawa Kunisada (1786 – 1864), dominated nineteenth century printmaking in Japan. Prolific and multitalented, Kuniyoshi considerably expanded the existing repertoire of the school, particularly with thousands of designs that brought vividly to life famous military exploits in Japan and China. He portrayed historic heroes of Japan's warrior past and brigands from the Chinese adventure story The Water Margin giving dramatic pictorial expression to the great myths and legends that had accrued around them.

(b. Edo, 1797; d. Edo, 1861). Painter, woodblock print designer and book illustrator. He was born into the urban artisan class of Edo (Edokko), the son of a silk dyer. As a child he showed a flair for drawing. Biographies mention his boyhood fascination for picture books by KITAO SHIGEMASA and Kitao Masayoshi (1764–1824) and his contact with the works of Katsukawa Shun'ei  and Katsukawa Shuntei (1770–1820). Kuniyoshi's formal training took place from 1811 to 1814, when he was apprenticed to Toyokuni I, from whom he learnt the Utagawa style of yakushae ('pictures of actors') and bijinga ('pictures of beautiful women').

artwork: Utagawa Kuniyoshi - The Chinese warrior Zhang Heng, 1847-48 Colour woodblock, 24.5 x 18.2 cm. American Friends of the British Museum (Arthur R. Miller Collection)Kuniyoshi's images of heroes, with which he made his name, constitute the most important part of his artistic output. However, censorship regulations frequently required him to displace events of recent centuries to a more distant fictionalised past. Kuniyoshi developed an extraordinarily powerful and imaginative style in his prints, often spreading a scene dynamically across all three sheets of the traditional triptych format and linking the composition with one bold unifying element - a major artistic innovation.

Kuniyoshi was also very active in the other major subjects and genres of floating world art: prints of beautiful women, Kabuki actors, landscapes, comic themes, erotica and commissioned paintings. In each of these he was experimental, imaginative and distinctly different from his contemporaries. For example, he transformed the genre of landscape prints by incorporating Western conventions, such as cast shadows and innovative applications of perspective. This departure from tradition is an indication of his independent artistic spirit.

The exhibition will be divided into six sections beginning with 'Kuniyoshi's Imagination' which presents the range of the artist's repertoire and his unique treatment. Then there follow more indepth selections: warriors, landscapes, beauties, theatre and humour. Highlights will include rare original brush drawings and a woodblock, a selection of extraordinary dynamic triptych prints and one of the only known examples of a set of twelve comic erotic prints.

The exhibition will include works from the American Friends of the British Museum (The Arthur R. Miller Collection), the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Museum of Scotland, the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge and private collections in Japan and USA.

Kuniyoshi is the third exhibition in a series dedicated to Japanese Artists and Printmakers to be held at the Royal Academy of Arts. The previous exhibitions have been Hokusai (1991-92) and Hiroshige: Images of Mist, Rain, Moon and Snow (1997).

Visit the Royal Academy of Arts at : http://www.royalacademy.org.uk/

British Artist Damien Hirst Presents New Paintings at the Wallace Collection

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:18 PM PDT

artwork: British artist Damien Hirst poses for photographers in front of his painting "White Roses and Butterflies," 2008, in London. Photo: Reuters/Kieran Doherty (Britain Entertainment Society)

LONDON (REUTERS).- British artist Damien Hirst has made a reputation, and sizeable fortune, from suspending animals in formaldehyde and filling medicine cabinets with pills. Now one of the world's most successful living artists has returned to more traditional territory of painting, and this time, unlike his mass-produced canvases covered in colored spots, the 44-year-old actually executed them himself. Hirst has displayed 25 new paintings, mostly featuring white skulls on blue-black backgrounds, at London's Wallace Collection, a family collection of old masters housed in gilded, silk-walled opulence. The exhibition runs from October 14 to January 24, 2010.

The South Bend Museum of Art to Show "Adrian Hatfield ~ King of the Impossible"

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:16 PM PDT

South Bend, Indiana.- The South Bend Museum of Art is pleased to present "Adrian Hatfield: King of the Impossible" on view at the museum from December 17th through February 26th 2012. Hatfield's multi-media work examines the modes of visual communication developed within religion, science and fine art and the role they play in humanity's attempt to understand itself and its place in the universe. The large-scale piece, KT and The Second Coming, is a metaphorical depiction of the moment the KT asteroid, which caused the mass extinction ending the reign of the dinosaurs, struck the earth. The artist invites viewers to enter a world via fantastical imagery, reminiscent of Sci-fi illustration, wherein Godzilla meets the Hudson River School of grandiose landscape. "My recent work examines the modes of visual communication developed within religion, science and fine art in order to answer seemingly unanswerable questions. It highlights the beauty and absurdity of the human compulsion to assign meaning to "life" and the greater universe, as well as the impossibility of attaining a complete understanding of the world. Central to this is the way science's visual language endeavors to make huge amounts of information digestible, creating the illusion of a more complete understanding of the subjects than actually exists.

This has parallels within religion as well as nineteenth-century Romantic landscape paintings in the exploration of vast and mysterious subject matter in an attempt to address sublime subjects and reduce them to a more manageable scale. The presence of pop culture references such as Godzilla and Freddie Mercury in my work challenges the accepted hierarchy in visual culture and examines the way lowbrow figures are imbued with meaning. An example of this is how Godzilla, a man in a rubber monster costume, can simultaneously exist as a popular B-movie icon, a complex symbol of the U.S./Japan political relationship, and as a metaphor for the destructive potential of nature and nuclear power. I am not suggesting that science, religion, fine art and pop culture are equivalent. Rather, I am interested in how the aspect of human nature that yearns for meaning, comprehension and control affects the development and function these disciplines. This sometimes causes a blurring where one or more of these areas begin tooperate in a way traditionally reserved for another." The title of the exhibition, King of the Impossible, is, according to the artist, "a reference to a lyric Freddie Mercury sings in the Queen song "Flash Gordon".  I think it hits on a number of elements in this body of work including Freddie Mercury, space, God and questions of His nature/existence.  It also seems to capture my "tongue in cheek but not kidding" was of approaching these vast subjects." Adrian Hatfield received his M.F.A. from Ohio University in 2003 and has been Assistant Professor of Painting at Wayne State University since 2005. He has been showing his work both nationally and internationally for almost 10 years. Recently, he was invited to take part in the NES Artist Residency in Skagastrond, Iceland.

The South Bend Museum of Art affirms the enduring power of the visual arts to reflect and create community, engage minds, and nurture growth through exhibitions, collections and educational programs. Since its founding in 1947, the SBMA has provided insight into the art, history and culture of the region and nation. Since 1987, the museum has been accredited by the American Association of Museums, which recognizes that it has achieved the highest levels of professional standards. Located inside the Century Center, the SBMA is an architectural delight. Designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee, the museum occupies three levels in the northern wing of the building. A full spectrum of historical and contemporary art is featured in six galleries, and a wide-range of artistic traditions are taught in their world-class art studios. The Permanent Collection of the South Bend Museum of Art presents over 60 years of acquisition. The collection features the work of historical Indiana artists, and significant contemporary regional artists, which makes it a unique collection for the community it serves.

The collection grew out of a community based creation called the South Bend Art Association, founded in 1947. The "Hoosier Group" were among important artists featured by this organization, and spurred interest in the visual arts in the area. The collection was founded by an initial gift from Mr. and Mrs. E. M. Morris, and continued to grow through purchases, gifts and donations. Artists included in this initial gift of the Morris's include William Forsyth, Clifton Wheeler, Daniel Garber, Theodore Clement Steele, Karl Bradner, and George Jo Mess. Included in the collection of regional art are works by early Indiana Impressionist painters, also called the Hoosier School, or Brown County School. Some of these artists include T. C. Steele, Frank Dudley, George Ames Aldrich, Clarence Ball, and Alexis Fournier. A long term loan from the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame features approximately 30 paintings by some of these historical Indiana artists, as well as others such as Emil Jacques, Homer Davisson, Frank Dudley, Luigi Gregori, and Ivan Mestrovic. Some of these artists were important educators at the university. Another group of works focuses on Indiana-born artists of note such as William Merritt Chase, Daniel Garber, Sam Gilliam, and Robert Indiana.

artwork: Adrian Hatfield - "Transition", 2006 - Mixed Media - 9" x 14"  -  Courtesy of the artist. "Adrian Hatfield: King of the Impossible" is on view at the South Bend Museum of Art.

The remainder of the collection features art by nationally recognized American artists including Lynda Benglis, Thomas Hart Benton, Mark di Suvero, Audrey Flack, Robert Henri, Jacob Lawrence, Louise Nevelson, Larry Rivers, and John Storrs. A small but important group of paintings of national scope is their collection of works from the Chicago Imagists, also known as the Hairy Who. Some of these artists include Roger Brown, Ed Paschke, Gladys Nilsson, and Ray Yoshida. These nationally recognized works provide a context for the regional collection. Comparisons between trends and movements, and aesthetic considerations such as subject and media, allow for interpretation on the idea of regional style. Much of the work by nationally recognized artists are works on paper. Other stylistic periods of American art represented by the collection include late 19th century genre painting, the Ash Can School , Urban Realism, Regionalism, Pop Art, New Realism, and Photo-Realism. Acquisition of several series of prints has allowed the museum to collect some of these nationally recognized artists, and also to address socio-political work pertaining to issues of racism, feminism, and tolerance. Examples of these suites of prints include the Kent Bicentennial Portfolio: "Spirit of Independence" which includes works by Robert Indiana, Alex Katz, Jacob Lawrence, and Marisol Escobar. Another suite from this period is the Boston Massacre Portfolio featuring Larry Rivers. These prints celebrate our country's history while addressing issues of tolerance, diversity and political dissent. The 10x10: Ten Women/Ten Prints includes works by Hung Liu, Yolanda Lopez, Carrie Mae Weems, and Faith Ringold. These prints address current feminist issues and highlight works by prominent minority artists of Chinese, Latino, and African-American backgrounds. Collection activity has been sustained through several means: purchase awards for sculpture and craft biennial exhibitions as well as full-media shows; gifts and donations; the Zisla Acquisition Fund; and the General Acquisitions Fund. Visit the museum's website at ... http://southbendart.org

Merce Cunningham, One of the Greatest American Dancers & Choreographers ~ Dies at 90

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:14 PM PDT

artwork: Merce Cunningham, who was among the most influential choreographers of the 20th century, and was at the forefront of the American avant-garde for more than 50 years, died on Sunday night. He was 90 years.

NEW YORk, NY.- Merce Cunningham, who was among the most influential choreographers of the 20th century, and was at the forefront of the American avant-garde for more than 50 years, died on Sunday night, the Merce Cunningham Dance Foundation said. He was 90. Throughout much of his life, Cunningham was also considered one of the greatest American dancers. A constant collaborator who has influenced artists across disciplines—including musicians John Cage and David Tudor, artists Robert Rauschenberg and Bruce Nauman, designer Romeo Gigli, and architect Benedetta Tagliabue—Cunningham's impact extends beyond the dance world to the arts as a whole.

Special Sightseeing Offer ~ Discover Copenhagen's Cultural Oasis

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:10 PM PDT

artwork: Press photo

Copenhagen, Denmark - Everyone knows money can be a bit tight after the Holidays.  But that's no excuse to miss out on some of the best sights and exhibitions Copenhagen has to offer! During the entire months of January and February the Museums on Slotsholmen (the central isle of Copenhagen, dominated by the Parliament, Christiansborg) have combined resources to offer six entrances for the low price of one!  For just DKK 50.00, you can now visit up to six different museums during the entire months of January and February.

The Contemporary Jewish Museum to Show "Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought"

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:09 PM PDT

artwork: April Gornik - "Light in the Woods", 2011 - Oil on linen - 72" x 108" - Syndey and Walda Bestoff Collection. On view at the Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Franciscoin "Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought; an Exhibition and the Dorothy Saxe Invitational" from February 16th until May 28th.

San Francisco, California.- The Contemporary Jewish Museum is pleased to present "Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought", an exhibition and the Dorothy Saxe invitational, on view at the museum from February 16th through May 28th. From the very first chapters of the Torah where one encounters them in the Garden of Eden, to the commandment Bal Tashchit (do not destroy) found in Deuteronomy forbidding their wanton destruction during wartime, trees occupy a particularly potent and symbolic place in Jewish literature and lore as expressions of paradise, regeneration, shelter, the bounty of the earth, longevity, and even as a precursor to the coming of the Messiah.

"Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought", explores the role of the tree in Jewish tradition and beyond through the lens of contemporary artists, offering fresh perspectives on ritual practice and our connection to the natural world. The companion exhibitions include the continuation of The Dorothy Saxe Invitational, an exhibition series in which artists from diverse backgrounds and working in a range of media are invited to explore Jewish ritual objects (this year focusing on the holiday of Tu B'Shevat, the New Year for the Trees), as well as a selection of work examining the tree more widely in contemporary art practice by international artists including Gabriela Albergaria, Zadok Ben David, Joseph Beuys, April Gornik, Charles Labelle, Rodney Graham, Jun Nguyen-Hatsushiba, Yoko Ono, Roxy Paine, Tal Shochat, and more. The third component is the expansion of the exhibition beyond the walls of the Museum on to the Jessie Square Plaza with a commission by the San Francisco-based environmental design firm Rebar.

artwork: Deborah Lozier - "Hand-me-down", undated - Found wood, Norwegian vintage silver and silver plate, sterling silver - 8" x 2" x 5/8" - Courtesy of the artist and Velvet da Vinci, San Francisco. On view at the Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco from February 16th until May 28th.

Building upon the Museum's long-standing tradition of asking artists from a variety of backgrounds to explore a Jewish ceremonial object, holiday, or concept within the context of their own mediums and artistic philosophy, over 50 contemporary artists from across the United States have created new works of art in response to a broad range of themes inspired by the holiday Tu B'Shevat (the New Year for the Trees). Tu B'Shevat, a minor holiday that falls in the middle of winter (this year occurring February 7-8), has become increasingly important for many Jews, especially here in the Bay Area, who have integrated faith and concern for the natural environment in a practice of environmental Tikkun Olam (making the world a better place). Originally a 2nd century holiday necessary for tithing crops to the temple, Tu B'Shevat was revived in the 16th century by mystical Kabbalists who observed the holiday with a feast of fruits in a special vegan seder that celebrated the life-giving properties of trees. In the 20th century, the meaning of the holiday shifted again as the planting of trees in Israel became crucial to inhabiting the land and gaining independence. Today, Tu B'Shevat has gained momentum with young Jews in particular who connect with Judaism through environmentalism and social justice.

For the exhibition, each participating artist was asked to incorporate reclaimed wood into their work in some way. San Francisco designer Yves Behar fashioned the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Aleph, from a piece of bay laurel driftwood found on the beach at Bolinas. Behar's piece is meant to suggest a reordering of our priorities. "Our awareness of nature needs to be first, like the first letter Aleph," says Behar. Colorado sculptor Yoshitomo Saito used a found aspen root as the basis for a work in bronze. Saito discovered that this iconic Colorado tree spreads through a root system that supports a colony of trees. While an individual tree may only live for 40-150 years above ground, the root system can survive for thousands of years. Says Saito, "The aspen root … represents not only the foundation of life but also means of survival and thriving of community." Also echoing this idea of endurance and its opposite, fragility, is a piece by Stanford-based artist Gail Wight who has fashioned handmade paper–a delicate and ephemeral medium–on which she has created an image of a cross section from a Devonian tree from over 400 million years ago. Luke Bartels, a member of the Woodshop collective in San Francisco's Sunset district, contributed a piece entitled The Wood Standard. The piece, a stack of wood shaped like bars of gold, questions the manner of ascribing value to particular materials over others–in this case positing trees or wood as valuable as gold. Michigan artist Lynne Avadenka took inspiration from a verse in the Book of Psalms that equates happiness, equanimity, and faith with a tree: "And he shall be like a tree planted by streams of water that brings forth fruit in its season and whose leaf will not wither." Avadenka used twigs from a fallen elm in front of her house to write out the Hebrew words of this passage, photographing them and fusing the images onto glass tiles. San Francisco artist Lisa Congdon was most interested in the symbolism associated with the Tu B'Shevat seder, and particularly the progression of four glasses of wine, from white to rose to red, that are part of the ritual feast. Made up of rows of triangles of reclaimed wood, the piece reflects on the layers of meaning she saw in the wine: "feminine to masculine, light to dark, creation and growth."

artwork: Tal Shochat - "Afarsemon (Persimmon)" (from a series along with Afarsek (Peach), Shaked (Almond), Tapuach (Apple), and Rimon (Pomegranate), 2011 - C-prints, 16 1/2" x 17" - Collection of Gary B. Sokol. Courtesy of Andrea Meislin Gallery, NY. On view at the Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco until May 28th.

Additionally, the Museum is working with Israeli artist/designer Dov Abramson to create an installation exploring how Jewish life and the cycles of trees are intertwined. This graphic wall will take visitors through an orchard of images, ideas, and language that illuminate the Jewish relationship to trees through ancient texts, contemporary rituals, and mystical ideas. Other participating artists and designers include Gale Antokal, Tor Archer, Helène Aylon, John Bankston, Bennett Bean, Garry Knox Bennett, Terry Berlier, Harriete Estel Berman, Johanna Bresnick + Michael Cloud Hirschfeld, Jeff Canham, Topher Delaney, Kiki Probst & Joel Cammarata of SEAM Studio, Richard Deutsch, Paul Discoe, Josh Duthie, Lauren Elder, David Ellsworth, Tamar Ettun, James Gouldthorpe, Beth Grossman, Grace Hawthorne, Tobi Kahn, Lisa Kokin, Paul Kos, Naomie Kremer, Daniel Libeskind, Deborah Lozier, Ron Lutsko, Liz Mamorsky, Jane Martin, Matthew McCaslin, Tucker Nichols, Josh Owen, Lucy Puls, Amy Klein Reichert, Galya Rosenfeld, Elliot Ross, Ellen Rothenberg, Kay Sekimachi, Nancy Selvin, Cass Calder Smith, Harley Swedler, David Tomb, Merav Tzur, Ursula von Rydingsvard, Lawrence Weiner, Allan Wexler, and David Wiseman.

Presented in the "Do Not Destroy" exhibition is a selection of more than 20 works by international artists who have examined the tree–conceptually or formally–in their work in either an ongoing, almost systematic way like Rona Pondick, Roxy Paine, Zadok Ben David, April Gornik, and Gabriela Albergia or those who have investigated the tree in more discrete projects like Rodney Graham, Yuken Teruya, Yoko Ono, and Charles Labelle. The earliest work in the exhibition is documentation of Joseph Beuys' 7,000 Eichen (7,000 Oaks). Beuys dedicated much of his artistic career in the 1960s and 70s to broadening the definition of art to include social activism, created a lasting significant public arts project–the realization of the planting of 7,000 oak trees in the city of Kassel, Germany that was inaugurated at the international art fair documenta 7 in 1982. Five years later at the opening of documenta 8 in June 1987, some eighteen months after his father's death, and five years after Beuys planted the first tree, Beuys' son Wenzel planted the last tree. The project was a real gesture towards urban renewal as Beuys improved the urban landscape. Beuys effort is echoed in the work of later artists like Natalie Jeremijenko, documentation of whose One Tree(s) project is on view. In 2003, she engineered a group of cloned trees and planted them in different parts of San Francisco to examine the long-term effect of the different neighborhoods' environmental conditions on the trees' size and general health. Kim Abeles, in her 2011 work Enchanted Forest (and City Hall), combines satellite photography with model trees to create miniature landscapes that call attention to the absurdities of urban development in Los Angeles. Other artists in the exhibition are less activist in their approach, opting rather to create a visceral and immersive aesthetic experience like April Gornik's Light in the Woods (2011), a dense forest painting of monumental scale and depth. Claire Sherman's painting Night and Trees II (2011) is unsettling in its ruggedness, indicating the precarious state of nature while Robert Wiens' meticulously rendered Butternut (2008) is a colossal to-scale drawing of a fallen tree from his property. Marcel Odenbach's mixed media work You Can't See the Forest for the Trees (2003) is a meditation on the idea of trees as silent witnesses to history–a birch forest from Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi concentration camp. Jason Lazarus' video The top of the tree gazed upon by Anne Frank while in hiding (Amsterdam) (2008) also acts as a witness to history–specifically to a young girl in hiding, writing to preserve her memory.

artwork: Lisa Congdon - "Connected", 2011 Reclaimed wood, gouache 18 1/2" x 11" - Courtesy of the artist. At Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco until May 28th.Blackfield (2011) by Zadok Ben David evokes the title of the exhibition Do Not Destroy in its disproportionate scale–the viewer hovers menacingly over a frail but delightful pygmy forest. Jun Nguyen-Hatsushiba's video The Ground, the Root, and the Air: The Passing of the Bodhi Tree (2004-2007) shows how a tree's spiritual power can emotionally affect the faithful. Yoko Ono's participatory Wish Tree also elicits belief from its subscribers who are invited to write their wish on a tag to be hung on the tree. In a departure from traditional landscape photography, both Charles LaBelle and Tal Shochat enhance the drama of the tree through artifice. In his 2000 series Illuminated Trees, LaBelle documents the lone trees that dot the resolutely urban environment of contemporary Los Angeles, illuminating them with a high-powered spotlight. Shochat's Five Fruit Trees (2010) are idealized images of bountiful fruit trees at the peak of ripeness that are devoid of any real context. Rodney Graham's photographs of inverted trees defy gravity causing a disorienting rupture of reality. A photograph from his 1998 series Welsh Oaks will be on view. The sculptors in the exhibition are almost God-like in their approaches, conjuring trees from their imaginations that delight with their super-natural physicality. Roxy Paine's larger-than-life tree sculptures resemble the formal structure of trees to a point, but eventually evidence of human intervention becomes apparent, as one notices odd growths, unrealistic proportions, and improbable growth directions. Models of his Palimpsest (2004) and Askew (2007) will be on view. Over the years, Rona Pondick has carefully cast her entire body, which she fuses together with flawlessly cast parts of tree branches. Her Head in Tree (2006-2008) is included in the exhibition. Yuken Teruya contributes two works: Notice–Forest (2006), a delicate tree cut out that stands firmly in the illuminated interior of a disposable bag, and The Giving Tree Project (2006), in which Teruya has cut into Shel Silverstein's book to add trees to its pages, perhaps compensating for the protagonist's neglect in planting for the next generation. Gabriela Albergaria is creating a site-specific work for the exhibition. Using downed trees and branches collected from Golden Gate Park with the help of San Francisco Recreation and Parks, Albergaria will create a hybrid tree sculpture in the gallery using faux grafting techniques based on traditional methods.

With the opening of its new building on June 8, 2008, the Contemporary Jewish Museum (CJM) ushered in a new chapter in its twenty-plus year history of engaging audiences and artists in exploring contemporary perspectives on Jewish culture, history, art, and ideas. The facility, designed by internationally renowned architect Daniel Libeskind, is a lively center where people of all ages and backgrounds can gather to experience art, share diverse perspectives, and engage in hands-on activities. Inspired by the Hebrew phrase "L'Chaim" (To Life), the building is a physical embodiment of the CJM's mission to bring together tradition and innovation in an exploration of the Jewish experience in the 21st century. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.thecjm.org

Philadelphia Museum of Art Exhibits Hans Burkhardt Painting "Burial of Gorky"

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:07 PM PDT

artwork: HANS BURKHARDT (1904-1994) - BURIAL OF GORKY, 1950 - Oil on Canvas - 32 x 42 inches - Signed and Dated Lower Right Courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art and Jack Rutberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles

Philadelphia, PA - When the artist, Hans Burkhardt (b. 1904 Basel, Switzerland - d. 1994 Los Angeles) left New York late in 1937, after nearly nine years of sharing Arshile Gorky's studio, he brought to Los Angeles the largest holdings of Gorky works by his friend and mentor, outside Gorky's own holdings. Burkhardt was the first to introduce Gorky's work to other artists and curators in L.A. and his collection was the subject of a number of Gorky museum exhibitions. Hans Burkhardt's "Burial of Gorky" is currently on view as part of the concurrent exhibition, "Arshile Gorky in Context" at the Philadelphia Museum of Art through January 10, 2010.

BGL Collective at the Koffler Gallery

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:03 PM PDT

artwork: BGL La Senteur De Mes Mains / The Marks of my Hands 

Toronto, Canada - La senteur de mes mains / The Marks of My Hands comprises a new site-specific installation created by celebrated Quebec collective BGL at the Koffler Gallery. Formed by Jasmin Bilodeau, Sébastien Giguère and Nicholas Laverdière while still in university, BGL has made an undeniable impact on the contemporary Canadian art scene in the past decade. Their provocative, witty and unpredictable interventions and installations aim to transform passive gallery visitors into engaged explorers. Challenging the ways we define and experience art, BGL invites us to relinquish preconceived notions and to question the boundaries between art and life. On exhibition September 6 to November 25, 2007.

The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts opens "Birds of a Feather ~ John Costin & John James Audubon"

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:02 PM PDT

artwork: Left - John James Audubon - "Black-bellied Darter (common name: Anhinga)" - Lithograph from the 1971 Theatrum, Orbis Terrarum, Amsterdam, reprint of the original Birds of America publication (1826-38) with engravings by Robert Havell - Collection of Kalamazoo College. Right - John Costin - "Anhinga", 1998 - Hand-colored etching from the Large Florida Birds portfolio - Collection of the KIA. On view in "Birds of a Feather: John Costin and John James Audubon" from March 24th until June 24th.

Kalamazoo, Michigan.- The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts (KIA) is pleased to present "Birds of a Feather: John Costin and John James Audubon" on view from March 24th through June 24th. Separated by two centuries, artists John James Audubon and John Costin are joined by a love of birds and a compulsion to share the thrill of seeing these magnificent creatures in the wild. Nearly 200 years after publication of his monumental Birds of America (1827-1838), Audubon is still America's most famous ornithologist. Nineteenth-century subscribers to Birds of America received 435 oversized plates, illustrating 1,065 individual birds of over 400 species. Inspired by Audubon's presentation of native birds, John Costin is creating his own series: Large Florida Birds. When complete, his project will present 20 of the state's most remarkable birds in similarly life-like poses and oversized format.

The Speed Art Museum Showcases Modern French Masters from the Dixon Gallery & Gardens Collection

Posted: 29 May 2012 06:00 PM PDT

artwork: Claude Monet - "Port of Dieppe, Evening", 1882 - Oil on canvas - Collection of the Dixon Gallery and Gardens. On view at the Speed Art Museum, Louisville, Kentucky in "Renoir to Chagall: Paris and the Allure of Color" until May 6th.

Louisville, Kentucky.- The Speed Art Muiseum is proud to present "Renoir to Chagall: Paris and the Allure of Color" on view at the museum until May 6th. the exhibition presents an extraordinary exhibition of modern French masters featuring 55 paintings from the Dixon Gallery and Garden s in Memphis, Tennessee and nearly 30 works from Speed's collection and public and private collections throughout Kentucky. This major exhibition features French Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, as well as key artists who came immediately before and after them. Among the who's who of painters included in the exhibition are Edgar Degas , Claude Monet , Pierre-Auguste Renoir , Camille Pissarro , Mary Cassatt , Henri Matisse , Paul Cézanne , Paul Gauguin , Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec , Georges Braque , and Marc Chagall . Renoir to Chagall demonstrates how Paris as the art capital of the Western world, produced and attracted artists of great accomplishment.

On view will be portraits, scenes of daily life, still lifes, landscapes, interiors, and the fascinating worlds of the ballet, cafés, boulevards, and other aspects of modern city life that made Paris a magnet for artists. The diverse subjects and styles of the magnificent works in this exhibition will illustrate the critical developments in French painting during this period that profoundly changed the direction of modern art. While the Impressionists experimented with color and light effects to capture the fleeting sensations of reality, the Post-Impressionists loosened ties to realism altogether by emphasizing abstract elements of form and color, and occasionally the inner world of feelings and emotions.

artwork: Henri Matisse - "The Palace, Belle Isle", circa 1896 - Oil on canvas - Collection of the Dixon Gallery and Gardens. On view at the Speed Art Museum, Louisville, KY

artwork: Marc Chagall - "Bouquet of Flowers with Lovers", 1927 Oil on canvas - Collection of the Dixon Gallery and Gardens. At the Speed Art Museum.The Speed Art Museum, originally known as the J. B. Speed Memorial Museum, is Kentucky's oldest and largest art museum. It was founded in 1925 by Hattie Bishop Speed as a memorial to her husband, James Breckinridge Speed, a prominent Louisville businessman and philanthropist. Designed by Louisville architect Arthur Loomis, the museum opened its doors on January 15, 1927, with an exhibition sponsored by the Louisville Art Association. Over a hundred American and European painters were represented and nearly two thousand visitors attended the opening. In 1941, Dr. Preston Pope Satterwhite made a significant gift to the museum - his collection of 15th century and 16th century French and Italian Decorative Arts including tapestries and furniture. In 1944, he donated the English Renaissance room, which was moved in its entirety from Devonshire, England. Dr. Satterwhite's gift necessitated an enlargement of the museum and in his will he provided for the addition that bears his name. Completed in 1954, it was the first of three additions to the original building. After another major addition to the building in 1973, the Speed celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1977 with the acquisition of Rembrandt's magnificent "Portrait of a Woman".

While the museum was closed for a dramatic renovation project in 1996, the museum received a life-changing gift, a bequest of more than $50 million from Alice Speed Stoll, granddaughter of James Breckinridge Speed. The bequest marks one of the largest given to any art museum and significantly increased the Speed's endowment, ranking it among the top 25 in the United States. Mrs. Stoll's bequest secured the museum's future and has allowed for several significant acquisitions including Jacob van Ruisdael 's "Landscape with a Half Timbered House and a Blasted Tree", (1653), and Paul Cezanne's Post-Impressionist masterpiece, "Two Apples on a Table" (about 1895-1900).

Since reopening in November 1997, the Speed has dazzled the region with exciting traveling exhibitions, new acquisitions to the permanent collection, and a new parking garage. It has also benefited greatly by a bequest from the estate of long-time Board of Governors member General Dillman A. Rash who left the museum works by Marc Chagall, Jean Dubuffet , Paul Klee , Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso , and Maurice Utrillo .  The museum is supported entirely by donations, endowments, grants, ticket sales, and memberships. The focus of the collection is Western art, from antiquity to the present day. Holdings of paintings from the Netherlands, French and Italian works, and contemporary art are particularly strong, with sculpture prominent throughout. Representative artists include Rembrandt van Rijn , Peter Paul Rubens , Giovanni Tiepolo, Henry Moore , Thomas Gainsborough , Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, and contemporary artists Frank Stella , Helen Frankenthaler , Alice Neel , Petah Coyne, Yinka Shonibare, Vito Acconci, and Juan Munoz . Today, The Speed Art Museum has come a long way since Mrs. Speed first opened the doors to the original museum over 80 years ago. Its magnificent building and impressive collection serve more than 180,000 visitors each year, making it a nationally recognized institution. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.speedmuseum.org

The Oklahoma City Museum of Art Features Its Dale Chihuly Glass Collection

Posted: 29 May 2012 05:58 PM PDT

artwork: Dale Chihuly - "Ancestor White Seaform Set with Lava Black Lip Wraps", 2001 - Glass - 61 x 182.9 x 91.4 cm. - Collection of the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. On view in "ILLUMINATIONS: Rediscovering the Art of Dale Chihuly" through April 8, 2012

Oklahoma City.- The Oklahoma City Museum of Art is proud to reopen its collection of glass by American artist Dale Chihuly on New Year's Eve. Exhibited on the third floor, "ILLUMINATIONS: Rediscovering the Art of Dale Chihuly" presents a fresh look at the Museum's popular Chihuly collection. Redesigned in collaboration with Chihuly Studio, the newly installed galleries will incorporate a unique design that features a three-dimensional approach to viewing some objects in the collection. The presentation will allow visitors to explore the large Float Boat and Ikebana Boat installations from all sides as well as includes viewing slots for the Reeds. "ILLUMINATIONS" will be accompanied by a special exhibition on the third floor titled "Chihuly: Northwest". On view through April 8, 2012, this exhibition will include glass sculptures by Chihuly inspired by Native American baskets; Chihuly's personal collection of textiles as well as photographs by Edward S. Curtis from The North American Indian Portfolio; and recent examples of Chihuly's White series.

"A" is for Aivazovsky as Bonhams Russian Sale Boasts a Cyrillic Who's Who

Posted: 29 May 2012 05:57 PM PDT

artwork: Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky (Russian, 1817-1900) - The morning catch - signed in Cyrillic and dated '1870' (lower right) oil on canvas 71.5 x 88.5cm (28 1/8 x 34 13/16in).  / Sold for £378,400 inclusive of Buyer's Premium

LONDON.- On 30th November at Bonhams New Bond Street hosted the sale of Russian Art, featuring the eminent names of both Aivazovsky and Fabergé. The first painting by Aivazovsky, whose career spanned almost the entire 19th century, is named "The Morning Catch". It is signed in Cyrillic and dated '1870' (lower right) and further signed in Latin and dated '1870' (lower left). The exceptional seascape oil painting is expected to fetch between £150,000 and £250,000 for the much sought-after artist. Sold for £378,400 inclusive of Buyer's Premium.

UK's White Cube opens Hong Kong gallery in pursuit of China's Booming Art Market

Posted: 29 May 2012 05:55 PM PDT

artwork: A visitor looks at artwork beside a piece by British artist Rachel Kneebone, center, inside the White Cube new gallery in Hong Kong. Britain's White Cube gallery launched its Hong Kong branch becoming the latest Western gallery to open an Asian outpost in pursuit of China's booming art market. -  Photo: Kin Cheung / AP

HONG KONG - Britain's White Cube gallery, known as an early champion of provocative British artists Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin, launched its Hong Kong branch on Thursday, becoming the latest Western gallery to open an Asian outpost in pursuit of China's booming art market. White Cube unveiled a 6,000-square-foot (557-square-meter) space in a new building in Hong Kong's central business district. With its first branch outside Britain, White Cube follows other British as well as French and American galleries that have set up shop in Hong Kong in recent years. As their home markets plateau, they're pinning hopes for future growth on Asia, particularly China, where a strong economy has been minting millionaires at a rapid clip. The arrival of White Cube in Hong Kong underlines the sophistication and increasing influence of the region's art collectors. Founded in 1993, White Cube has had a long association with Hirst and Emin, the most prominent of a group known as the Young British Artists that emerged in the 1990s.

Museum Tinguely features Eccentric & Bizarre Collection of Ted Scapa

Posted: 29 May 2012 05:53 PM PDT

artwork: Ted Scapa Drawing-room: Works by Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Jörg Immendorff, Markus Lüpertz, etc. © Foto: Christian Baur

BASEL.- The exhibition at the Museum Tinguely affords an insight in the eccentric collection of Ted Scapa. The well-known Swiss cartoonist, born in 1931 in the Netherlands, was a contributor to the international press before taking over the reins at Benteli Publishers in Berne for over thirty years. With the childrens' programme Das Spielhaus of the German Swiss television DRS Scapa became a known public figure in the 1960s and '70s. Today, he lives and works as a freelance artist and organises Creativity Workshops. On view 4 February through 19 April, 2009.

The exhibition SCAPA Memories documents Scapa's relationship to art and introduces the visitor to his collection and its very personalized dialogue between tradition and Modernity. For Scapa, art is a vital necessity of life. The items that have come together throughout his lifetime do not follow an intentional strategy but rather his intuition. This cultural biotope in which Ted Scapa and his wife Meret have lived and worked for the past fifty years reflects Scapa's vision and experience of the world and of art.

Scapa's favourite word, „creativity", is at the same time his message and the criterion of selection behind the constitution of his collection. A further important impulse of his overflowing passion as a collector are the Memories, his recollections of numerous encounters with artists from all over the world, some of them developing into yearlong friendships, others perchance encounters prompted by the spontaneity of his enthusiasm. With time, this activity produced an inspired medley of artworks and objects that is totally in keeping with Scapa, the man, but also the artist known for his design of lamps and carpets.

artwork: Ted Scapa / Vallamand 2008 © Foto: Christian Baur, BaselHis important activity as a publisher (c. 1500 titles) brought him together with a great number of artists, gallery owners, collectors and museum people – a magical mix that always was an inspiration. He was not only close to great names such as Joan Miró or Aimé Maeght, but also entertained close friendly ties with numerous individuals who all partook of his legendary hospitality.

The publication of catalogues brought him in contact with the masters of monumental graphic works, to name but a few of Germany's group of "New Savages" – Georg Baselitz, Markus Lüpertz, A. R. Penck, Jörg Immendorff – and the Swiss artists Martin Disler, Peter Stämpfli or Alfred Hofkunst.

In Scapa's collection that evokes a "cabinet of curios", colourful letter-drawings by Jean Tinguely and one of his machine-sculptures neighbour almost naturally ritual items and objects of daily use from the most varied peoples and eras. Monumental graphic works by the hand of renowned artists of the 20th century, amongst them Antoni Tàpies or Frank Stella, are part of the ensemble, sharing the stage with Chinese terracotta figures or wooden sculptures, masks and reliefs from Africa.

In his Eldorado, his manor-house on the Lake of Morat, sculptures, objects and works on paper fill the drawing- and dining-room, the window niches and all the ledges, the tables and cupboards, the lintels and landings, overflowing from the kitchen to the toilets.

artwork: Works by Georg Baselitz, Jean Tinguely, etc. in Drawing Room © Foto: Christian Baur, BaselIn front of the works on paper stacked along the walls, African figures, mostly male and female nudes, some small others overly large, masks and drums are positioned with accuracy, some of them to fit the images in colour and form, others crudely placed, probably for lack of space. New acquisitions are constantly added and the total artwork acquires a new focus, without however a loss to its impact.

This "cabinet of curios" is a source of inspiration for Ted Scapa and the driving force behind his own artistic output. He is as fascinated by the expressive and often bizarre faces of non-European artworks as he is by the artistic means of expression offered by the technique of reproduction of works on paper by modern artists.

With total insouciance, he cares not whether the African figures are original or copied after old models. The context of their origins does not count, not to speak of any scientifically proven provenance. What does count is the fact that an artisanal artistry has been handed down, a guarantee of survival, without loss to its strength of expression. Thus Ted, the artist, has his very own approach to art, and for Ted, the art communicator, who with his Spielhaus revived the roots of creativity among children of the entire country, a successful reproduction is as valid as its optimum communication. As a publisher, as a man of the written word and an exegete of printing, reproducible art is always closest to him.

The exhibition at the Museum Tinguely presents 120 items from Scapa's collection as well as a film by Roy Oppenheim documenting Scapa's life and his particular relationship to art.

List of artists:
Georg Baselitz / Stefan Berger-Teichmann / François Burland / Alexander Calder / Luciano Castelli / Eduardo Chillida / Christo und Jeanne-Claude / Jan Cremer / Martin Disler / Rainer Fetting / Sam Francis / Keith Haring / Alfred Hofkunst / Karl Horst Hödicke / Jörg Immendorff / Paul Klee / Bernhard Luginbühl / Markus Lüpertz / Felix Müller / Claes Oldenburg / A. R. Penck / Arnulf Rainer / James Rosenquist / Niki de Saint Phalle / Ted Scapa / Meret Schaap / Richard Serra / Peter Stämpfli / Saul Steinberg / Frank Stella / Bert Stern / Antoni Tàpies / Jean Tinguely / Bernar Venet

Visit the Museum Tinguely at : http://www.tinguely.ch/en/index.html

Art Knowledge News Presents "This Week In Review"

Posted: 29 May 2012 05:52 PM PDT

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