U.S.A. - CHICAGO-ILLINOIS - Fujinuma Noboru: Master of Bamboo

Fujinuma Noboru. Spring Tide, c. 2000. Gift of Fujinuma Noboru.

Renowned today as an innovator of contemporary basket artistry, Fujinuma Noboru did not begin his study of traditional Japanese crafts until 1974. His career as a bamboo artist took off in 1992 when one of his pieces won a top prize at the Traditional Craft Arts Exhibition and was subsequently purchased by the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo.

This exhibition presents for the first time bamboo baskets that were part of a gift to the Art Institute from the artist’s personal collection. Most of the works are flower baskets, but the group includes an array of shapes and techniques. Some baskets are in the morikago or tray shape, while others are cylindrical or globular in form. The works’ color palette ranges from undyed bamboo to the deep russet color of farmhouse rafters, and techniques encompass ara-ami, meaning “rough” or “coarse” plaiting, as well as meticulous fine plaiting.

This beautiful and varied assemblage represents a tremendous leap forward for the museum’s collection of contemporary Japanese art and bamboo baskets in general. The Art Institute now has the largest collection of Fujinuma’s work in the United States, incredibly significant, as he is one of the great living masters of this important craft.

The Art Institute of Chicago      28.05.2011 - 13.11.2011

Website & source : The Art Institute of Chicago

Website : City of Chicago

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U.S.A. - DAYTON-OHIO - From Romance to Rifles: Winslow Homer's Illustrations of 19th-Century America

Winslow Homer is best known as a great American painter; but he was also a prolific and expert wood engraver. Most of Homer's engravings were published inHarper's Weekly where Homer worked as a freelance illustrator between 1857 and 1876 before his career as a painter was fully launched. According to Philip C. Beam, noted Homer scholar; Homer was the "leading designer of wood engravings of his day, and that many of the engravings are now loved and admired as masterpieces of their kind" and that "At their best they rank with his watercolors and oils for style and beauty."

The Army of the Potomac -- A Sharp Shooter on Picket Duty, 1862, is typical of Homer's extraordinary sense of design. Here, he captures the drama of a moment during the Civil War; while at the same time he creates a design of intense movement and clarity. With his ability to convey emotion as well as information, Homer was an artist who routinely made illustration and art indistinguishable pursuits.

The Dayton Art Institute is proud to present a broad selection of Homer wood engravings from a private collection in Dayton. These images show how Homer had his finger on the pulse of American life and his eye on the American scene in an unexcelled fashion during a vibrant and important time in our national life, the years just before and after the Civil War. The show features more than 50 engravings, and it gives delightful and entertaining insights into what people felt and did on street corners, in parks, and on the battlefields. For a fresh, intimate and thoroughly enjoyable glimpse into 19th-century America, there are few better sources of our visible history.

The Dayton Art Institute     25.06.11 - 02.10.2011

Website & source : The Dayton Art Institute

Website : City of Dayton

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U.S.A. - AKRON-OHIO - The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Ohio

Charles Clough, Muniment,1988-1994, enamel on fiberboard, 18 1/2 in. x 22 1/8 in., Gift of The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States, a joint initiative of the Trustees of the Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection and the National Gallery of Art, with generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services

The remarkable story of Dorothy and Herbert Vogel has become the stuff of lore. A Manhattan postal clerk and a reference librarian at the Brooklyn Public Library, the couple began collecting art shortly after marrying in 1962. Together they purchased thousands of artworks, cramming their one-bedroom Manhattan apartment floor to ceiling with art. These unlikely collectors concentrated their acquisitions on emerging art forms, works from a wide range of genres including minimal and conceptual art as well as expressionistic . Because the Vogels only purchased art that would fit in their apartment, most of the works are intimate in scale.

In 1992, the Vogels decided to gift most of their collection to the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C. The sheer size of the gift, which included 2,500 drawings, paintings, objects, prints and photographs by 177 artists, led to the development of a program in which the National Gallery would distribute 50 works from the collection to one institution in each of the fifty states. The Akron Art Museum is thrilled to be the Ohio recipient of The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States gift.

Akron’s Vogel collection includes paintings, drawings, prints and sculpture by 26 artists. Many including Nam June Paik, Richard Tuttle, Lynda Benglis and Edda Renouf, have achieved international acclaim since the Vogels began collecting their work. The intimate scale of many of the artworks invites close looking. Twelve of Richard Tuttle’s subtle but poetic and lyrical watercolor paintings on sheets of notebook paper will be among the many captivating works on view.

This exhibition is organized by the Akron Art Museum and sponsored by a generous gift from The Welty Family Foundation and the Kenneth L. Calhoun Charitable Trust, Key Bank, Trustee.

Akron Art Museum         18.06.2011 - 16.10.2011

Website & source :Akron Art Museum
Website :City of Akron
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U.S.A. - SAN DIEGO-CALIFORNIA - Gustav Stickley and the American Arts and Crafts Movement

Electric lamp

The San Diego Museum of Art is proud to present Gustav Stickley and the American Arts and Crafts Movement. Organized by the Dallas Museum of Art, this is the first nationally touring exhibition to focus on the career of Stickley (1858–1942), one of the leading figures of the American Arts and Crafts movement. The exhibition will examine Stickley’s contributions to the history of American design and architecture during his most productive and creative period, from 1900 to 1913, and will provide new insights into the artistic, commercial, and social context of Stickley’s work. From The Craftsman magazine to his own stores in New York, Washington and Boston, Stickley offered customers a complete lifestyle based on his philosophy of simple design and quality materials. Ranging from furniture to metalware and embroidered textiles to architectural designs, the majority of the more than 100 objects in the exhibition are from private collections and have never been seen before by the public.

One of the exhibition’s highlights will be the re-creation of the dining room first displayed in the 1903 Arts and Crafts Exhibition organized by Stickley and exhibited in his Syracuse Craftsman Building. Other highlights include an armoire, ca. 1907-1912, which Stickley kept for his private use in the decades after he sold his business, and works showcasing his experimentation with different varnishes, which can still be seen as a patchwork of colors on the undersides of the drawers. Also on view will be a rare armchair, c. 1903, with copper and wood inlay reflecting Stickley's brief foray into decorated Arts and Crafts furniture influenced by the work of progressive British and Scottish designers.

The exhibition finds a particularly appropriate venue in San Diego, which has a rich heritage of Arts and Crafts architecture and decorative art. Communities such as North Park and Mission Hills are well known for their historic homes from this era. Marston House, at the edge of Balboa Park, was designed by local architects William Sterling Hebbard and Irving John Gill and is one of California's finest examples of the Arts and Crafts movement. San Diego also saw the production of Arts and Crafts pottery, tiles, and metal work.

The San Diego Museum of Art  Through september 11, 2011

Website & source  : The San Diego Museum of Art

Website : City of San Diego

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U.S.A. - COLUMBIA-SOUTH CAROLINA - Michael Kenna: Venezia

Michael Kenna
Ferro da Gondola
Venice - 2006

“Kenna has long taken advantage of the gifts that the late hours offer a photographer. Here he deploys the long exposure and the resulting spectrum of amazing blacks and grays to show the otherworldly, romantic appeal of night.” – The New York Times

Michael Kenna’s work has often been described as enigmatic, graceful and hauntingly beautiful. The exhibition features 53 black and white images that demonstrate a skilled photographer’s ability to capture on film what we cannot see with our eyes, such as the movement of time and the presence of atmosphere. Kenna has captured the essence of Venice, its romance, its miraculous existence and its crumbling beauty. Kenna’s long exposures, sometimes lasting several hours during the darkest hours of the night, smooth over the surfaces of the canals, further emphasizing their street-like function in this floating city. With typically meticulous prints, Kenna distills Venice to its iconic, elemental characteristics of water and light.

Columbia Museum of Art      16.07.2011 - 23.10.2011

Website & source : Columbia Museum of Art

Website : City of Columbia

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