Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Brooklyn Museum visit

Went to the Brooklyn Museum a few weeks ago to catch the "HIDE/SEEK" show, and also walked through a few other shows including Eva Hesse. To the left is the one photo I got of a painting by Romaine Brooks. Beautiful portraiture, but read recently in a Modigliani bio that she had a hard time getting commissions. Generally portraits are a hard sell unless commissioned, but her pieces here were so good that I've been inspired to learn more about her.
Below are photos and the description of the exhibition (up to Feb 12, 2012):
"The first major museum exhibition to focus on themes of gender and sexuality in modern American portraiture, HIDE/SEEK: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture brings together more than one hundred works in a wide range of media, including paintings, photographs, works on paper, film, and installation art. The exhibition charts the underdocumented role that sexual identity has played in the making of modern art, and highlights the contributions of gay and lesbian artists to American art. Beginning in the late nineteenth century with Thomas Eakins’ Realist paintings, HIDE/SEEK traces the often coded narrative of sexual desire in art produced throughout the early modern period and up to the present. The exhibition features pieces by canonical figures in American art—including George Bellows, Marsden Hartley, Alice Neel, and Berenice Abbott—along with works that openly assert gay and lesbian subjects in modern and contemporary art, by artists such as Jess Collins and Tee Corinne."
There was a small show of work done by Eva Hesse during a stay in NY. Apparently she was experimenting a bit with her work, and it is exciting to see this process when an artist is loose, letting it flow, and not necessarily thinking about the outcome. The work has an energy and excitement to it, maybe not so much in these photos, but definitely in person. Here are some pieces and a portion of the wall text.

Below the text are miscellaneous shots from the museum including a large painting by Kehinde Wiley from a room full of his work, including chapel-like ceiling pieces. In another part of the museum were these skateboards spread out on the floor and if you look closely, they're covered with Persian rug pieces. A cool commentary on youth cross-culture and amusing play on a magic carpet ride.

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