This Week's Major Events: A Holiday-Inspired Showhouse Plus Fine Art and Design Exhibitions from New York to Paris
Artistic Furniture of the Gilded Age, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
December 15, 2015
The most sumptuous moment in America’s Gilded Age is revealed through the work of some of its most noted design firms in Artistic Furniture of the Gilded Age, opening December 15 at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The centerpiece of the three-part exhibition is the opulent Worsham-Rockefeller Dressing Room from the New York City house commissioned by art collector and philanthropist Arabella Worsham (later Huntington; ca. 1850–1924). A complete work of art, with its elaborate woodwork and decorations, it is a rare surviving commission by the New York-based cabinetmaker and interior decorator George A. Schastey (1839–1894), who is the subject of the second part of the exhibition. Although little-known today, Schastey operated a large and successful decorating firm in the late 19th century. Click here to continue reading.
You Go Girl! Celebrating Women Artists, The Heckscher Museum of Art, Huntington, NY
On view through April 3, 2016
Female artists throughout history faced numerous challenges not experienced by their male colleagues, including limited access to formal training and social conventions that placed women firmly in the domestic realm. Although women achieved more freedoms in the early-20th century, they continued to compete for recognition within a system of galleries, museums, and universities dominated by men. Artists of the 1970s addressed the plight of the female artist and the patriarchy of the art establishment in protests at the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and elsewhere. Howardeena Pindell and Ce Roser (both represented in the exhibition) are among those who joined together to form activist organizations and cooperative galleries that provided women an opportunity to network, exhibit their work, and advance their cause to end discrimination against women in the arts. Included in the exhibition is the early feminist artist, Miriam Schapiro, who challenged traditional boundaries by incorporating crafts associated with women within her work, as well as May Stevens and Audrey Flack, who used traditional mediums to challenge male authority in subtle and overt ways. Click here to continue reading.
Strength and Splendor: Wrought Iron from the Musee Le Secq Des Tournelles, Rouen, Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia, PA
On view through January 4, 2016
The world’s most important collection of wrought iron objects—door knockers, garden implements, jewelry, keyhole escutcheons, locks, bas reliefs, signs, strongboxes, surgical tools—from the Musée le Secq des Tournelles, will complement one of the most intriguing collections at the Barnes Foundation: the 887 pieces of European and American metalwork that punctuate the Foundation’s signature wall arrangements of old master and modern paintings. Albert C. Barnes underscored the formal affinities that these objects shared with the “motives and arabesques” in the paintings in his Gallery, neither identifying individual objects nor explaining their use. Often, he combined disparate objects—shoe buckles and door hinges, ladles and hasps—to create new forms. In a 1942 letter to the American artist Stuart Davis, Barnes noted that the anonymous craftsman of such functional items was “just as authentic an artist as a Titian, Renoir, or Cézanne.” Click here to continue reading.
Power and Pathos: Bronze Sculpture of the Hellenistic World, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
On view through March 20, 2016
Power and Pathos presents some 50 bronze sculptures and related works, dating from the fourth century BC to the first century AD. They span the Hellenistic period when the art and culture of Greece spread throughout the Mediterranean and lands once conquered by Alexander the Great. Through the medium of bronze, artists were able to capture the dynamic realism, expression, and detail that characterize the new artistic goals of the era. This exhibition will feature works from renowned archaeological museums in Austria, Denmark, France, Georgia, Great Britain, Greece, Italy, Spain, Tunisia, the United States, and the Vatican. Click here to continue reading.
Southern Impressions: Paintings From the James-Farmer Collection, North Carolina Museum of History, Raleigh, NC
On view through July 4, 2016
Stories of the “southern experience” are as prolific as kudzu. A new exhibit, Southern Impressions: Paintings From the James-Farmer Collection, at the N.C. Museum of History in Raleigh takes you on a historical journey that explores the cultural heritage, dramatic landscapes and diverse peoples that have shaped the South and the southern experience. Now open, the exhibit features 40 loaned paintings from the collection of Dr. Everette James and Dr. Nancy Farmer, of Chapel Hill, alongside museum artifacts. The free exhibit runs through July 4, 2016. “The variety of paintings by native-born and visiting artists captures their unique reflections of the South from 1820 through 1950,” says Michael Ausbon, Associate Curator of Decorative Arts. “The artists convey the beauty — and the harsh realities — of the region’s history.”Click here to continue reading.
Rooms with a View: Holiday Impressions, Jepson Center, Savannah, GA
On view through December 18, 2015
The Telfair Academy Guild presents the second annual Rooms with a View: Holiday Impressions exhibit. This two-week-long show features local interior designers along with the internationally acclaimed designer Mary McDonald. “Rooms” will be constructed inside the Jepson Center, transforming it into a dazzling showhouse. Click here to continue reading.
Pop Art Design, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
December 19, 2015-March 27, 2016
While we may think we know pop inside-out through the well-documented and widely discussed work of Andy Warhol and his peers, the spirit of pop not only manifested itself in Warhol’s paintings of Marilyn Monroe and Campbell’s soup cans, it also influenced the look of chairs, sofas, lamps, and even architecture during the culturally ebullient 1960s and 1970s. Pop Art Design, an exhibition organized by the Vitra Design Museum, one of the preeminent furniture and design museums in the world, pairs iconic design objects with artworks from this celebrated era to show the cross-pollination between these creative worlds. Click here to continue reading.
Woven Gold: Tapestries of Louis XIV, Getty Museum, Los Angeles, CA
December 15, 2015-May 1, 2016
During Louis XIV’s time, colorful and glittering tapestries, handwoven after designs by the most renowned artists, were the ultimate expression of status, power, taste, and wealth. The exhibition will feature 15 larger-than-life tapestries ranging in date from about 1540 to 1715 and created in weaving workshops across northern Europe. In an exclusive loan from the French nation, most of the tapestries are from the collection of the Mobilier National, which preserves the former royal collection. Eleven have never before been exhibited in the Unites States. The Getty Museum is supporting the conservation of two of the tapestries. At the Getty, preparatory drawings, related prints and a life-sized cartoon (oil) will accompany the immense hangings. The tapestries in the exhibition are after works of art by Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio, Italian, 1483 - 1520), Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, 1577 - 1640), Charles Le Brun (French, 1619-1690) and others. Click here to continue reading.
Popol Vuh: Watercolors of Diego Rivera, Bowers Museum, Santa Ana, CA
On view through May 29, 2016
The sacred text Popol Vuh is a tale of the origins, traditions and history of the Quiché-Maya people. In 1931, the renowned Mexican muralist Diego Rivera produced a series of watercolors to illustrate this sacred book. Popol Vuh: Watercolors of Diego Rivera is the first United States presentation of these 17 compelling watercolors from the collection of the Museo Casa Diego Rivera in Guanajuato, Mexico. These watercolors not only breathe life into the powerful creation story of an ancient civilization, but also provide insight into Rivera's passionate and creative vision of the pre-Hispanic world. Click here to continue reading.
Giacometti: Pure Presence, National Portrait Gallery, London
On view through January 10, 2016
Alberto Giacometti is widely regarded as one of the most important and distinctive artists of the 20th century. This major exhibition is the first to focus on his portraiture and includes over sixty paintings, sculptures and drawings from international public and private collections. Throughout his career Giacometti was fascinated by the artistic complexities of evoking a human presence. His portraits are characterised by an intense scrutiny of his models, during which he endeavoured to record his constantly changing perceptions. The resulting images are among Giacometti’s most enigmatic and personal, central to his reputation as one of the giants of modern art. Click here to continue reading.
Wifredo Lam, Centre Pompidou, Paris
On view through February 15, 2016
For the first time, the Centre Pompidou is devoting a retrospective to the work of Wifredo Lam, with a circuit of nearly 300 works – paintings, drawings, engravings and ceramics – enriched with archives, documents and photographs that illustrate a committed approach in a century full of radical change. Lam's work occupies a singular and paradoxical position in 20th century art. It reflects the diverse movements of forms and ideas in the context of avant-gardes, exchanges and cultural movements – both within themselves and across national borders – that embodied the "broader modernism" described by Andreas Huyssen, but in a different way from the question of globalisation that emerged in the 1990s, and long before it. Click here to continue reading.