Through August 13, 2017
The Museum of Modern Art
The exhibition Making Space: Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction shines a spotlight on the stunning achievements of women artists between the end of World War II (1945) and the start of the Feminist movement (around 1968). In the postwar era, societal shifts made it possible for larger numbers of women to work professionally as artists, yet their work was often dismissed in the male dominated art world, and few support networks existed for them. Abstraction dominated artistic practice during these years, as many artists working in the aftermath of World War II sought an international language that might transcend national and regional narratives—and for women artists, additionally, those relating to gender.
Drawn entirely from the Museum’s collection, the exhibition features nearly 100 paintings, sculptures, photographs, drawings, prints, textiles, and ceramics by more than 50 artists. Within a trajectory that is at once loosely chronological and synchronous, it includes works that range from the boldly gestural canvases of Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler, and Joan Mitchell; the radical geometries by Lygia Clark, Lygia Pape, and Gego; and the reductive abstractions of Agnes Martin, Anne Truitt, and Jo Baer; to the fiber weavings of Magdalena Abakanowicz, Sheila Hicks, and Lenore Tawney; and the process-oriented sculptures of Lee Bontecou, Louise Bourgeois, and Eva Hesse.
"Making Space" shines a spotlight on the stunning achievements of women artists between the end of World War II (1945) and the start of the Feminist movement (around 1968). Join us for a conversation with MoMA director Glenn Lowry and curators Starr Figura and Sarah Hermanson Meister for a discussion on the opening of the exhibition.
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|The Barberini tapestries, scenes from the Life of Christ.|
Detail from "The Consignment of the Keys to St. Peter." Photo: John Bigelow Taylor
By Val Castronovo
Cardinal Francesco Barberini (1597-1679), nephew of Pope Urban VIII, commissioned the works, which were produced at the tapestry workshop he founded in Rome in 1627. The series was woven over a 13-year period from 1643 to 1656. The massive weavings measure roughly 16-feet high and 12-to-19-feet wide and stand testament to the political and cultural power of the Barberini family.
Ten tapestries from the 12-panel Life of Christ series adorn three of the chapels within the Cathedral. At the Chapel of St. James, seven of the wool-and-silk-woven panels are wrapped around the room, providing a panoramic view of scenes in the life of Jesus — namely “The Annunciation,” “The Nativity,” “The Adoration of the Magi,” “The Baptism of Christ,” “The Consignment of the Keys to St. Peter,” “The Agony in the Garden” and “The Crucifixion.”
The adjacent Chapel of St. Ambrose houses the complementary pieces, “The Rest on the Flight into Egypt” and “The Holy Land” (a woven map). Behind the high altar, the Chapel of St. Saviour concludes the exhibit with a single tapestry, “The Transfiguration,” depicting the ecstatic scene, described in the Gospels, after Jesus climbs a mountain and appears to three of his disciples in shining glory. (Two darkened fragments from “The Last Supper” are in a display case nearby.)
If You Go
“The Barberini Tapestries: Woven Monuments of Baroque Rome”
The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine
1047 Amsterdam Ave., at 112th Street
Now through June 25, 2017
How Radical Can a Portrait Be?
Vinson Cunningham writes about two new exhibitions, both at the Studio Museum in Harlem.
“One, “Regarding the Figure,” curated by Eric Booker, Connie H. Choi, Hallie Ringle, and Doris Zhao, and drawn largely from the museum’s permanent collection, is a reflection—mercifully free of neurosis or worry—on what faces and bodies have meant to art’s recent and distant past. Here, figures are art itself, no mere phase or moment in time. Henry Ossawa Tanner’s lithograph “The Three Marys” presents the women at Christ’s tomb as a study in developing sorrow: three faces, three stages of grief. The Mary closest to us—she must be the Virgin—is just in the middle of raising her hands.
The other exhibition is Rico Gatson’s Icons
“Icons,” a solo exhibition of recent works on paper by the artist Rico Gatson, curated by Hallie Ringle, takes this ecstasy in personhood and makes it as visible as people themselves. Gatson appropriates old photographic images of famous black Americans—Zora Neale Hurston, Gil Scott-Heron, Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye—and surrounds them with bright, colorful lines that shoot outward from the personages to the borders of the page. Each of his titles is a simple, familiar first name. Purple, black, yellow, and red sprout from Zora’s scarved head. Bird’s horn shouts out black and white. Sam—Cooke, that is—has lines shooting out of his shoulders and his toes.
Now through August 6, 2017
Now through August 27, 2017