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Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Announces Exhibitions through 2009

Friday, December 22, 2006

Media only: 

Gabriel Einsohn (202) 633-2822; einsohng@si.edu
Public only:
(202) 633-1000; http://hirshhorn.si.edu 

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Announces Exhibitions through 2009

Black Box: Magnus Wallin
Dec. 15–May 20, 2007
Magnus Wallin’s (Swedish, born 1965; lives and works in Malmö, Sweden) animated films are drawn from his dreams and nightmares, and the scenarios suggest fables or myths. The characters are anonymous superbodies, evoking both classical ideals of physical beauty and a futuristic vision of clinical, pure muscle forms. They enact challenges in a timeless, airless space that recalls the aesthetic of video games and are faced with a fate that is perpetually beyond their control. Wallin’s “Exercise Parade” (2001) and “Anatomic Flop” (2003) will be on view. Each work is approximately 3 minutes long and includes sound. The Hirshhorn’s Black Box presents recent film and video works by a diverse range of emerging and established international artists. This presentation is organized by associate curator Kelly Gordon. Films run continuously during regular museum hours.

“Refract, Reflect, Project: Light Works from the Collection”
Feb. 15–April 8, 2007
Throughout the history of art, light has been linked to fundamental questions of vision and perception. “Refract, Reflect, Project: Light Works from the Collection” highlights objects from the Hirshhorn’s collection in which light—as substance and subject—is central. Selected works include examples of Minimalism, conceptualism, kinetic art, immersive environments and experimental film. Among the artists featured are Giovanni Anselmo, Chryssa, Dan Flavin, Joseph Kosuth, James Turrell, Thomas Wilfred and Joseph Kosuth. The exhibition will also include recent acquisitions by such artists as Olafur Eliasson, Spencer Finch and Christoph Girardet. The exhibition is on view on the second floor of the museum and is organized by associate curator Anne Ellegood.

“Directions—Virgil Marti and Pae White”
March 9–July 29, 2007
As part of the Hirshhorn’s “Directions” series, artists Virgil Marti (born 1962, lives and works in Philadelphia) and Pae White (born 1963, lives and works in Los Angeles), who are both known for their innovative site-specific transformations of spaces, will together create a major installation-based project in response to the Hirshhorn’s late modernist architecture. In this, their first collaborative exhibition, they will draw upon the experimentation of conceptual artists from the 1960s and 1970s who reconsidered the art object and its relationship to its environment. Marti and White will react to the lobby area with a sense of play, generating an engaging dialogue about perception, the experience of this space and the interrelationships between art, architecture and design. The exhibition is organized by programs manager Milena Kalinovska. The Hirshhorn’s “Directions” series has brought the work of leading and emerging international artists to Washington since 1987.

“Black Box: Takeshi Murata”
May 28–Sept. 9, 2007
Takeshi Murata (born 1974, lives and works Los Angeles and New York) produces films involving masterful manipulation of digital animation while also integrating hand-built dimensions. Psychedelia, abstraction, intense color and hypnotic sound tracks are utilized in Murata’s short films. The exhibition includes: “Monster Movie” (2005), a montage of scenes the artist sampled from a video of the 1981 B-movie “Caveman.” To create “Monster Movie,” Murata hand-selected frames from “Caveman,” creating a final film montage with 7,200 images. The Hirshhorn’s Black Box presents recent film and video works by a diverse range of emerging and established international artists. This presentation is organized by associate curator Kelly Gordon. Films run continuously during regular museum hours.

“Wolfgang Tillmans”
May 10–Aug. 12, 2007
Media Preview: May 9, 10 a.m. to noon
German-born artist Wolfgang Tillmans is recognized for his photography that suggests the beauty of the everyday and the deep connections among communities of people. The exhibition, co-organized by The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (MCA) and the Armand Hammer Museum of Art and Cultural Center in Los Angeles, is the first major solo exhibition of this artist’s work in the United States. Tillmans’ subjects often include: friends and celebrities; colorful arrangements of food and flowers; articles of clothing that suggest the human body; idyllic landscapes; and interiors that contain the remains left after parties. The artist also creates luminous abstractions by exposing photo-sensitive paper to light sources. He presents his work in distinctive installations in which variously sized photographs are affixed to the walls in deliberate, yet seemingly random, arrangements in order to create a variety of physical and emotional relationships with the viewer. Tillmans’s installation at the Hirshhorn features approximately 300 photographs. The exhibition is co-curated by Dominic Molon, associate curator, MCA, and Russell Ferguson, deputy director of exhibitions and chief curator, Hammer Museum. The presentation at the Hirshhorn is organized by assistant curator Kristen Hileman.

“Black Box: Mircea Cantor”
Sept. 17–Dec. 9, 2007
Born in Romania in 1977, and currently based in Paris, Mircea Cantor left Romania soon after its borders opened in the early 1990s. Hitchhiking across Europe, he led an itinerant life that duplicated the curiosity with which he explores artistic genres. The Hirshhorn’s exhibition includes: “Deeparture” (2005), a film that recorded a suspenseful dance between a wolf and a deer trapped in a small gallery space—a piece that calls to mind Joseph Beuys’s 1974 performance “I Like America and America Likes Me,” in which the artist locked himself up with a coyote at the René Block Gallery in New York for a week. Cantor’s short video is a disturbingly silent examination of ideas about nature and dominance played out in a time-distorting loop. The Hirshhorn’s Black Box presents recent film and video works by a diverse range of emerging and established international artists. This presentation is organized by associate curator Kelly Gordon. Films run continuously during museum hours.

“Morris Louis Now: An American Master Revisited”
Sept. 20, 2007–Jan. 6, 2008
Media Preview: Sept. 19, 10 a.m. to noon
(High Museum of Art through January 24, 2007 and the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, Feb. 17–May 6, 2007)
“Morris Louis Now: An American Master Revisited” is the first consideration of Washington, D.C.–based artist Morris Louis’s work since 1986. The exhibition presents major paintings dating from the early 1950s until his death in late 1962, the years Louis developed an innovative method of painting by “staining” his unprimed canvases with thinned washes of acrylic pigments. The artist, who was born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1912, studied at the Maryland Institute of Fine and Applied Arts. As a young man he painted in a realist manner; only in his forties did he find his signature style. Even in cramped quarters in Washington D.C., Louis was able to make large paintings, achieving an exuberant, lyrical celebration of colors hovering in white space. Louis became an inspirational figure for other artists in the Color Field movement in the 1960s, notably Kenneth Noland and Helen Frankenthaler. The exhibition is organized by the High Museum of Art, in close collaboration with the artist’s widow, Marcella Louis Brenner and independent scholar Diane Upright. The Hirshhorn’s presentation is coordinated by senior curator Valerie Fletcher. Coinciding with this exhibition will be galleries devoted to the recent research and conservation of Color Field paintings in the Hirshhorn’s collection.

“Black Box: Rivane Neuenschwander”
Dec. 17, 2007–April 16, 2008
Neuenschwander’s films include themes of chance and improvisation. The artist is perhaps best known for her photographic series and was a finalist for the Hugo Boss award in 2004. Neuenschwander was born in Brazil in 1967, where she currently lives and works. Included in the Black Box presentation are “Quarta-Feira de Cinzas/Epilogue” (2006), which is Portuguese for “Ash Wednesday.” The film is a collaboration with artist Cao Guimaraes and offers a mesmerizing close-up view of a community of ants hauling large, thin, colored flecks of confetti from Carnival celebrations.

“The Cinema Effect: Illusion, Reality, and the Moving Image”
Part I: “Dreams,” Feb. 14–May 11, 2008
Part II: “Realisms,” June 19–Sept. 7, 2008
The cinema, its technology (including later offshoots like television and the internet) and its vocabulary have permeated contemporary culture to the extent that the very boundaries between “real life” and make-believe are often indistinct—sometimes even indecipherable. “The Cinema Effect” is a two-part exhibition that focuses on contemporary works of art and the ways in which they adapt, challenge or reflect the influence of cinema and its blurring of definitions of fact and fiction. Both exhibitions include film and media installations by a range of international artists including Omer Fast, Gary Hill, Isaac Julien, Steve McQueen, Tony Oursler, Runa Islam and Kelly Richardson, among others.

The first exhibition, “Dreams,” explores the experience intrinsic to film viewing—the transition from waking to dream-like state—as well as its darker, voyeuristic implications and is organized by chief curator Kerry Brougher and associate curator Kelly Gordon. The second exhibition, “Realisms,” organized by associate curator Anne Ellegood and assistant curator Kristen Hileman, focuses on the question of reality versus illusion that is inherent to film and is a defining issue for our culture and for many artists. 

“Anne Truitt”
Oct. 2008–Jan. 2009
The first major exhibition of Truitt’s work since her death in 2004, “Anne Truitt” is a full survey of the sculpture and two-dimensional works made during the artist’s 40-year career. In addition to a variety of three-dimensional works—suggestive of walls, towers and other architectural forms—in which the artist explored the effects of scale and proportion, the retrospective presents the column sculptures that became the hallmark of Truitt’s profoundly focused practice. In many ways acting as a painter as well as a sculptor, the artist wrapped color around the corners of many of these sculptures, creating visually poetic relationships between the structural plane and the color plane. While the geometric shapes of her work resonated with Minimal art appearing in the 1960s, Truitt pursued an independent course in her art-making, incorporating influences from Washington Color Field artists, as well as mid-century abstract painters like Ad Reinhardt and Barnett Newman. Truitt, born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1921, was based in Washington, D.C. for most of her adult life and has been largely under-recognized for her contribution to post-1960 art. The exhibition is organized by assistant curator Kristen Hileman and will be accompanied by the first complete monograph on the artist.

ONGOING:

“Ways of Seeing: John Baldessari Explores the Collection” and “Collection in Context”
Through September 2007
The Hirshhorn Museum invited American artist John Baldessari to be the first artist to organize an installation using works drawn from the museum’s holdings, offering the public new perspectives on the Hirshhorn’s renowned collection of modern and contemporary art. For “Ways of Seeing,” Baldessari selected a wide range of works—from the height of modernism to contemporary pieces—some of which have not been on view for decades. Among the works included in the installation are paintings by Milton Avery, Philip Guston and Thomas Eakins, photography (also by Eakins) and sculpture by Emily Kaufman. The Hirshhorn developed “Ways of Seeing,” a project that invites noted visual artists, authors, filmmakers and others to create installations from the Hirshhorn’s collection, as part of its commitment to bringing the voices and vision of artists forward. The project is organized by assistant curator Kristen Hileman.

About the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Smithsonian’s museum of international modern and contemporary art, has some 11,500 paintings, sculptures, mixed media installations and works on paper in its collection. The Hirshhorn maintains an active and diverse exhibition program and offers an array of free public programs that explore the art of our time. The museum, located at Independence Avenue and Seventh Street, S.W., is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25), and admission is free. Visit www.hirshhorn.si.edu for more information or to download Podcasts on the collection and exhibitions as well as talks with artists and curators.

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