UMMA Exhibitions & Events – March 2019

 

Continuing Exhibitions

THE POWER FAMILY PROGRAM FOR INUIT ART: TILLIRNANNGITTUQ
MARCH 16–OCTOBER 6, 2019
SPECIAL EXHIBITIONS FFW 2ND FLOOR

To inaugurate UMMA’s new Power Family Program for Inuit Art, the Museum presents a special exhibition connecting two fascinating stories. One story traces the development of contemporary Inuit art in the Canadian Arctic from the 1950s to the present. The other relates the Power family’s seminal role in supporting and promoting Inuit art and introducing it to U.S. audiences. Seventy years ago, neither the Inuit nor the Power family could have anticipated the tremendous outpouring of art that ensued, or the international acclaim contemporary Canadian Inuit art enjoys today. The exhibition,  Tillirnanngittuq  (Inuktitut word meaning “unexpected”), celebrates the creativity of the Inuit, as producers of these cultural treasures. Additionally, Tillirnanngittuq  signals the beginning of a third story, a promising new narrative to unfold through groundbreaking research, educational programs, and exhibitions on Inuit art and culture at the University of Michigan in coming years. 

THE SIX SENSES OF BUDDHISM
MARCH 23–JUNE 30, 2019
THE JAN AND DAVID BRANDON FAMILY BRIDGE

Art museums generally give primacy to the sense of sight. Religious and ritual objects, on the other hand, stimulate an array of multisensory experiences. Focusing on works from UMMA’s collection associated with different types of Japanese Buddhism, we engage all of the six senses in this exhibition. These six are integral to Buddhist devotion: sight, hearing, smell, touch, taste, and mind (or the activity of thinking, including what is perceived via the other senses). The “Six Senses” gallery experience extends beyond vision to include: the sound of chanting and ritual implements; the fragrance of incense; the feel of bronze, ceramic, and silk; and the creation of mental images. Our goal for visitors, is to gain a deeper understanding of the nature and histories of objects used in Buddhist practice.


Continuing Exhibitions

ART IN THE AGE OF THE INTERNET, 1989 TO TODAY
THROUGH APRIL 7, 2019
A. ALFRED TAUBMAN GALLERY I | THE CONNECTOR

The internet has changed every aspect of contemporary life—from how we interact with each other to how we work and play. Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today examines the radical impact of internet culture on visual art since the invention of the web in 1989. This exhibition presents more than forty works across a variety of media—painting, performance, photography, sculpture, video, and web-based projects. It features work by some of the most important artists working today, including Judith Barry, Juliana Huxtable, Pierre Huyghe, Josh Kline, Laura Owens, Trevor Paglen, Seth Price, Cindy Sherman, Frances Stark, and Martine Syms.

Organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, the exhibition at UMMA will be accompanied by a wide range of U-M partnerships and public programming. Please visit our website for a full calendar of events.

Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today  is organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston and curated by Eva Respini, Barbara Lee Chief Curator, with Jeffrey De Blois, Assistant Curator.

WANG QINGSONG/DETROIT/BEIJING
THROUGH MAY 26, 2019
IRVING STENN, JR. FAMILY GALLERY

In  The Bloodstained Shirt  (2018), Chinese artist Wang Qingsong restages in Highland Park, Michigan, an iconic 1959 drawing by Wang Shikuo of peasants rising up against a cruel landlord and triumphantly reclaiming their right to the land. Wang’s projects are usually located in China, but while visiting southeast Michigan he was struck by the similarities between the effects of inequitable real estate development on local communities in Detroit, Highland Park, and his native Beijing. His large-scale photograph, set in an abandoned factory building in Highland Park and featuring more than seventy volunteers, collapses two moments in history to present a vivid reminder of the human consequences of the ruthless pursuit of profit and the power of collective action. The exhibition includes works created in collaboration with area residents that give voice to their concerns and their hopes for transformation and renewal.

COSMOGONIC TATTOOS
THROUGH SPRING 2019
THE COMMONS

In celebration of the University of Michigan’s Bicentennial in 2017, artist and distinguished U­–M art professor Jim Cogswell was invited to create a series of public window installations in response to the holdings of the University of Michigan Museum of Art and the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology. For this visionary project, the artist adhered a procession of vivid images to the glass walls of the museums in a rhythmically evocative narrative, based on reassembled fragments from a diverse range of artworks in both museums’ permanent collections. The juxtaposed images address our shared histories and experiences while connecting the viewer to the origins and meaning of objects and their power to shape knowledge, memory, and identity. By leveraging the buildings’ unique architecture, the artist expands our understanding of a museum as a cultural repository and highlights the significant role of these institutions in the life of the campus community.

ABSTRACTION, COLOR, AND POLITICS IN THE EARLY 1970s
THROUGH FALL 2019
A. ALFRED TAUBMAN GALLERY II

In the early 1970s, that question was hotly debated as artists, critics, and the public grappled with the relationship between art, politics, race, and feminism. Many of those debates centered on bringing to light the roles that gender and race played in how “great modern art” was defined and assessed, and on employing art to advance civil rights. Within this discourse, abstraction had an especially fraught role. To many, the decision by women artists and artists of color to make abstract art seemed to represent a retreat from politics and protest: an abnegation of a commitment to civil rights and feminism. Abstraction, Color, and Politics in the Early 1970s presents large-scale work by four leading American artists—Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, Al Loving, and Louise Nevelson—who chose abstraction as a means of expression within the intense political climate of the early 1970s.

Guided Exhibition and Gallery Tours

ABSTRACTION, COLOR, AND POLITICS IN THE EARLY 1970s
SUNDAY, MARCH 3
2–3 p.m.

Abstraction, Color, and Politics in the Early 1970s explores large-scale works of art by Helen Frankenthaler, Louise Nevelson, Sam Gilliam, and Al Loving, within the context of highly-charged debates of the early 1970s about aesthetics, politics, race, and feminism. This exhibition explores the gendered and racialized terms upon which great art was defined and assessed, and the strategy of artists to question the identity and aesthetics of the artist making the art. UMMA docents will help visitors look through the lens of the four artists’ works to explore the aesthetic choices inherent in abstraction as well as the acts of staining, pouring, draping, —or even taking apart the wall itself—within this charged political context.

ART IN THE AGE OF THE INTERNET, 1989 TO TODAY
SUNDAY, MARCH 10
2–3 p.m.

The internet has changed every aspect of contemporary life—from how we interact with each other to how we work and play. Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today , examines the radical impact of internet culture on visual art since the invention of the web in 1989. Join UMMA docents as they explore the more than forty works across a variety of media—painting, performance, photography, sculpture, video, and web-based projects—in this exciting exhibition.

Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today  is organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston and curated by Eva Respini, Barbara Lee Chief Curator, with Jeffrey De Blois, Assistant Curator.

SHORT STUDENT TOURS
FRIDAY, MARCH 15 & 29, 3–3:15 p.m. & 3:30–3:45 p.m.
SATURDAY, MARCH 23, 3–3:15 p.m.

Student docents explore love and death, politics and humor, history, mythology, materiality, fashion, food, and other ideas in these short & sweet 15-minute peeks at the UMMA collection. Meet at the UMMA Store.

Student programming at UMMA is generously supported by the University of Michigan Credit Union Arts Adventures Program, UMMA’s Lead Sponsor for Student and Family Engagement.

GUIDED TOURS: THE POWER FAMILY PROGRAM FOR INUIT ART: TILLIRNANNGITTUQ
SUNDAY, MARCH 17
2–3 p.m.

n celebration of UMMA’s new Power Family Program for Inuit Art, the Museum presents a special exhibition of two incredible, intertwining stories. One traces the development of contemporary Inuit art in the Canadian Arctic from the 1950s to the present. The other relates the fascinating story of the Power family’s important role in supporting and promoting Inuit art from the outset, bringing public attention to its artistic strength and cultural importance. The Power family’s collection is unusual in its strong representation of early contemporary carvings, incised drawings on ivory and antler, soapstone sculptures, and prints that evolved as Inuit artists developed their own artistic voices and responded creatively to their changing world.

THE AGE OF THE INTERNET IN COMIC BOOKS: BOOK CLUB TOUR
SATURDAY, MARCH 30
2–3 p.m.

On the occasion of the exhibition Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today, UMMA and Vault of Midnight-Ann Arbor have partnered up to form the UMMA Book Club: The Age of the Internet in Comic Books. Join David Choberka, Andrew W. Mellon Manager of Academic Outreach & Teaching, for a discussion in the gallery that connects the art on view to themes in the selected comics. Open to anyone, regardless of participation in the book club.

Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today  is organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston and curated by Eva Respini, Barbara Lee Chief Curator, with Jeffrey De Blois, Assistant Curator.

 

 

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