The Modern Art Notes Podcast

Episode No. 289 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features artist Nancy Rubins. It was recorded live at the Wexner Center for the Arts at The Ohio State University in Columbus.

Rubins is included in "Grey Matters," an exhibition that opens Friday, May 19 at the Wexner. The show, curated by Michael Goodson, features the work of 37 contemporary women artists who have worked in grisaille. It is on view through July 30. The exhibition includes work by past MAN Podcast guests such as Carol Bove, Vija Celmins, Mickalene Thomas, Julie Mehretu, Mary Reid Kelley, Arlene Shechet, Amy Sillman, Xaviera Simmons and Lorna Simpson.

Rubins' often monumental sculpture amalgamates industrially produced objects into strikingly light, sometimes lyrical objects. Her enormous drawings, of built-up graphite on single sheets of paper often installed across multiple walls, are simultaneously minimal and baroque. Rubins has had solo exhibitions at museums such as the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Her public and institutional commissions include the University of Texas in Austin, MCASD, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, and the Université Paris Diderot in France.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyNine.mp3
Category:visual art -- posted at: 4:09pm EDT

Episode No. 288 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features Kimbell Art Museum director Eric Lee and Menil Collection curator Michelle White.

Lee joins the program to discuss the Kimbell's recent acquisition of a rare Amadeo Modigliani sculpture, Head (c. 1913). Only about 27 Modigliani sculptures survive. Head was a gift from collector Gwendolyn Weiner and is the first modern sculpture in the Kimbell's collection. It is on view now.

Then Michelle White discusses her Menil exhibition "Between Land and Sea: Artists of the Coenties Slip." The show looks at the early work of Chryssa, Robert Indiana, Ellsworth Kelly, Agnes Martin, Lenore Tawney, and Jack Youngerman, all of whom who lived in the Coenties Slip, an East River-adjacent neighborhood set apart from the rest of the Manhattan art world. The exhibition considers moments of communication and influence. It is on view through August 6.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyEight.mp3
Category:visual art -- posted at: 2:10pm EDT

Episode No. 287 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features historian Kellie Jones and artist Shimon Attie.

Kellie Jones is the author of "South of Pico: African American Artists in Los Angeles in the 1960s and 1970s," which is new from Duke University Press. Amazon offers it for $22.

This is Jones's second major project about art in Los Angeles during the 1960s and 1970s. She also curated "Now Dig This! Art and Black Los Angeles 1960-1980" for the Hammer Museum in 2011. She was a 2016 recipient of a MacArthur Foundation 'Genius Grant,' and teaches art history at Columbia University.

Among the artists featured in Jones's book who have been featured on The Modern Art Notes Podcast are Melvin Edwards and Betye Saar. Curator and historian Yael Lipschutz came on the program to discuss Noah Purifoy on the occasion of LACMA's 2015 retrospective. Also discussed on this week's program: The extensive digital archive for "Now Dig This!" is maintained by the Hammer Museum.

On the second segment, Shimon Attie discusses two new works on view at the Saint Louis Art Museum: The Crossing, an eight-minute video installation that muses on the global refugee crisis via a group of gamblers playing roulette, and Lost in Space (After Huck) a sculptural installation that uses Mark Twain's famous Huckleberry Finn story to give Americans an empathetic gateway into stories of migration and displacement. They're on view in Saint Louis through June 25.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightySeven.mp3
Category:visual art -- posted at: 1:11pm EDT

Episode No. 286 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features historian and curator Ellen McBreen and historian Darby English.

Along with Helen Burnham and Ann Dumas, McBreen is a co-curator of "Matisse in the Studio," which is at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston through July 9. The exhibition examines how objects in Matisse's home and studio informed -- and often ended up in -- his art. These objects include a simple chocolate pot, a tacky chair, an inexpensive glass vase probably made for the tourist market and textiles, such as Kuba cloth. The exhibition includes about 34 paintings, 26 drawings, 11 sculptures, seven cut-outs and about three dozen objects Matisse owned.

From Boston the exhibition will travel to the Royal Academy of Arts in London. Its excellent catalogue, which was published by the MFAB, is available from Amazon for $34.

McBreen is an associate professor of art history at Wheaton College. Her most recent book is "Matisse's Sculpture: The Pinup and the Primitive," which was published by Yale University Press in 2014.

On the second segment, University of Chicago professor Darby English discusses his new book "1971: A Year in the Life of Color." The book, which was published by University of Chicago Press, considers two exhibitions -- Contemporary Black Artists in America at the Whitney Museum of American Art and The DeLuxe Show, a racially integrated exhibition of abstract art presented in a renovated movie theater in Houston's inner-city Fifth Ward. English finds that many black artists of the period were less interested in a specifically so-called "black aesthetic," than they were in cultural interaction across racial lines. He points to color and how these artists used it as a key way in which they engaged other artists.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightySix.mp3
Category:visual art -- posted at: 2:09pm EDT

Episode No. 285 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features curators Randall Griffey and Vivian Endicott Barnett.

Along with Elizabeth Finch and Donna M. Cassidy, Griffey is the co-curator of "Marsden Hartley's Maine," which is at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through June 18. The exhibition spotlights Hartley's lifelong engagement with Maine, its residents, coastline, forests and mountains. It includes about 90 paintings and drawings featuring the full range of Hartley's Maine-related work.

From the Met, "Marsden Hartley's Maine" will travel to the Colby College Museum of Art, where it goes on view on July 8. (It will be at Colby during the first weekend of August, when Colby hosts the 2017 Art and Land Conservation Symposium. MAN Podcast host Tyler Green is among the speakers.) The show's strong catalogue was published by the Met. Amazon offers it for $35.

On the second segment, historian and curator Vivian Endicott Barnett discusses her "Alexei Jawlensky" at the Neue Galerie in New York. It features 75 paintings and is the artist's first full museum retrospective in the United States. Jawlensky was a Russian-born expressionist who moved to Munich in 1896 and went on to become an important figure in how central and eastern European artists engaged with early modern art -- and especially with van Gogh, Matisse, fauvism and more. It's on view through May 29.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyFive.mp3
Category:visual art -- posted at: 5:05pm EDT

The Easter-weekend Episode No. 284 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features a previously-aired conversation with curator George Shackelford.

Shackelford is the curator of "Monet: The Early Years" at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. The show features about 60 paintings from the first phase of Claude Monet's career, from a painting Monet made in Normandy in 1858 when he was 18 years old, until 1872, when Monet lived in Argenteuil, along the Seine near Paris. The exhibition debuted last winter at the Kimbell Art Museum, where Shackelford is the museum's deputy director. "Monet" is on view in San Francisco through May 29. The show's beautiful catalogue was published by the Kimbell and distributed by Yale University Press.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyFour.mp3
Category:visual art -- posted at: 12:43pm EDT

Episode No. 283 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features artists Liz Glynn and Nina Chanel Abney.

Glynn's "Open House" is on view now in Doris C. Freedman Plaza in New York's Central Park. It was commissioned by the Public Art Fund and will remain through September 24. The work takes as its jumping off point Freedman Plaza's unusual site, the place where democratic Central Park meets corporate midtown meets the aristocratic Upper East Side. Glynn's sculpture highlights the class distinctions that separate the park from the city by referencing a Fifth Avenue interior designed by Gilded Age architect Stanford White. The exhibition was curated by Daniel S. Palmer.

Glynn's work routinely engages history and the way both it and historical objects are considered in the present day. Her work has been presented or exhibited at MOCA in Los Angeles, the New Museum in New York, the deCordova Sculpture Park in Concord, Mass., the Petit Palais in Paris, LACMA, and more. This fall, MASS MoCA will present Glynn's "The Archaeology of Another Possible Future" in the museum's Building Five.

On the second segment, Nina Chanel Abney discusses her work on the occasion of a 10-year survey of her work titled "Nina Chanel Abney: Royal Flush." The exhibition is at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University through July 16, when it will travel to the Chicago Cultural Center and then to Los Angeles, where it will be jointly presented by the Institute of Contemporary Art -- the institution formerly known as the Santa Monica Museum of Art -- and the California African American Museum. 

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyThree.mp3
Category:art -- posted at: 8:43am EDT

Episode No. 282 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features curator Diane Waggoner and curator Katy Rothkopf.

Waggoner is the curator of "East of the Mississippi: Nineteenth-Century American Landscape Photography." For several decades, the story of America's nineteenth-century photographic history has mostly run through the West. Waggoner's exhibition instead looks at how photographers looked at the region between the Mississippi River and the Atlantic Ocean. The exhibition features 175 nineteenth-century photographs, including daguerreotypes, salted paper prints, albumen prints, stereographic prints and even paintings. It's on view at the National Gallery of Art through July 16, when it will travel to the New Orleans Museum of Art. 

On the second segment, Baltimore Museum of Art curator Katy Rothkopf discusses Richard Diebenkorn's 1964 visit to the Soviet Union in the context of "Matisse/Diebenkorn." The exhibition, which Rothkopf co-curated with San Francisco Museum of Modern Art curator Janet Bishop, is on view at SFMOMA through May 29. Bishop discussed "Matisse/Diebenkorn" on Episode No. 266.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyTwo.mp3
Category:art -- posted at: 10:05am EDT

Episode No. 281 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast considers federal arts and humanities funding with Los Angeles Times art critic Christopher Knight and Andrew W. Mellon Foundation executive vice president for programs and research Mariët Westermann.

The National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities make up eight one-thousandths of one percent of the federal budget. Still, in the name of austerity, the Trump White House has targeted the endowments, the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for elimination in its first budget. The endowments each received $148 million in appropriations in the federal government's most recent fiscal year, while the IMLS received $230 million and CPB $445 million. Meanwhile, the Trump budget asks for a 10 percent increase in defense spending, a single-year bump of $54 billion -- or 365 times the NEA or NEH's total annual appropriation.

No American art or arts critic has written more about the role of federal arts and humanities funding and especially the national endowments over more years than Christopher Knight. He has been the art critic of the Los Angeles Times since 1989. He is a three-time finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and received the Frank Jewett Mather Award for Distinction in Art Criticism from the College Art Association in 1997. 

On the second segment, Mellon foundation VP Mariët Westermann discusses federal arts and humanities funding from a funder's perspective. Prior to joining Mellon in 2010, was the provost and chief academic officer of New York University Abu Dhabi; director of NYU's Institute of Fine Arts; associate director of research at the Clark Art Institute, and an associate professor at Rutgers University. As a historian of Netherlandish art, Westermann has written books on Jan Steen, Rembrandt, Vermeer and more.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEightyOne.mp3
Category:art -- posted at: 10:49am EDT

Episode No. 280 of The Modern Art Notes Podcast features curators Simon Kelly and Gail Stavitsky.

Along with the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco's Esther Bell, Kelly is the co-curator of "Degas, Impressionism & the Paris Millinery Trade." The exhibition melds the social history of modernizing 19th-century Paris with the ways in which painters, especially Edgar Degas, captured one the city's boomingest industries, the manufacturing and selling of hats, an industry that was a gateway into the city, employment and the bourgeoisie for tens of thousands of French women. The exhibition is at the Saint Louis Art Museum through May 7, when it will travel to San Francisco's Legion of Honor. The exhibition's superb catalogue was published by the two museums and DelMonico Prestel.

On the second segment, Gail Stavitsky discusses "Matisse and American Art," her new exhibition on the impact Matisse's work has had on American artists. The show, which features 65 paintings, sculptures, prints and archival objects is on view at New Jersey's Montclair Art Museum through June 18. Stavitsky curated the show with assistance from John Cauman and Lisa Mintz Messinger. The exhibition catalogue was published by the museum.

Direct download: MANPodcastEpisodeTwoHundredEighty.mp3
Category:art -- posted at: 10:45am EDT