December 19, 2014–July 26, 2015
The presence of text in art has greatly increased in the modern era, but the relationship of language and visual art have a much longer history. [con]text examines this history as represented in the UMFA's permanent collection. From an ancient Egyptian wall relief to medieval illuminated manuscripts to the contemporary practices of John Cage, Bruce Nauman, and Willie Cole, this exhibition looks at the way visual artists have harnessed the power of language to document, to inspire, to inform, and to persuade. [con]text also explores how language itself constantly evolves, leading to both the loss and creation of meaning. In conjunction with the exhibition, the UMFA is hosting a writing contest for U of U undergraduate students. Winners will receive cash prizes, and their work will be made available in the galleries and presented at UMFA's Open Mic on Thursday, April 2.
Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art
from the Smithsonian American Art Museum
February 6, 2015–June 28, 2015
Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art presents the rich and varied contributions of Latino artists in the United States since the mid-twentieth century, when the concept of a collective Latino identity began to emerge. The exhibition is drawn entirely from the Smithsonian American Art Museum's pioneering collection of Latino art. It explores how Latino artists shaped the artistic movements of their day and recalibrated key themes in American art and culture.
Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art is organized by the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Generous support for the exhibition has been provided by Altria Group, the Honorable Aida M. Alvarez; Judah Best, The James F. Dicke Family Endowment, Sheila Duignan and Mike Wilkins, Tania and Tom Evans, Friends of the National Museum of the American Latino, The Michael A. and the Honorable Marilyn Logsdon Mennello Endowment, Henry R. Muñoz III, Wells Fargo and Zions Bank. Additional significant support was provided by The Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center. Support for Treasures to Go, the museum's traveling exhibition program, comes from The C.F. Foundation, Atlanta.
S. J. and Jessie E. Quinney Foundation | Ray, Quinney & Nebeker Foundation
Supporting Sponsor: WELLS FARGO
In-Kind Sponsor: Community Partner: Media Sponsor:
salt 10: Conrad Bakker
September 12, 2014–February 8, 2015
Conrad Bakker makes imprecise, to-scale replicas of objects like books, photographs, chairs, and motorcycles out of wood and paint to investigate the creation of value and economic systems. Often inserting his handmade facsimiles into the commercial realms of their real commodity counterparts, Bakker circumvents the art market, challenges postmodern perceptions of authorship and authenticity, and questions the distinction between originality and appropriation.
new narratives: recent work by u of u art faculty
October 24, 2014-January 11, 2015
This triennial exhibition showcases the newest work by the University of Utah's Department of Art and Art History faculty and celebrates the working artists who inspire the community through their creative output and their teaching.
Krishna: Lord of Vrindavan
August 8-November 30, 2014
A companion exhibition to Moksha: Photography by Fazal Sheikh, Krishna: Lord of Vrindavan explores the Hindu god Krishna through sacred and secular artworks, dating from the 11th century to the 20th, from the Museum's Asian art collection. Krishna promised followers that through bhakti (devotion) to him, one could gain moksha (salvation).
Moksha: Photography by Fazal Sheikh
July 11–November 30, 2014
Moksha: Photography by Fazal Sheikh weaves together the artist-activist's portraits and the stories of a community of widows in the Hindu pilgrimage site of Vrindavan. A marginalized segment of Hindu society since ancient times, widows, many of them dispossessed of home and family, have few places of sanctuary. In Vrindavan, a city holy to the Hindu god Krishna, these women chant and pray every day in the hopes of obtaining moksha, release from the constant cycle of death and rebirth. The exhibition, comprising forty photographs by Sheikh, is on loan from the Princeton Museum of Art. Fazal Sheikh has worked as a photographer since graduating from Princeton University in 1987. Primarily through portraits, he brings attention to marginalized peoples and groups around the world. His other projects include Ladli, A Camel for the Son, and Ramadan Moon. He has won numerous awards including the Henri Cartier-Bresson International Grand Prize and a MacArthur Fellowship.
On loan from Princeton University Art Museum.
Creation and Erasure:
Art of the Bingham Canyon Mine
May 30–September 28, 2014
Northern Utah’s Bingham Canyon Mine, the largest man-made excavation on earth, has been a source of fascination and inspiration for artists around the country since the mine’s earliest days. Spanning 1873 to the present, this exhibition presents paintings, drawings, prints, and photographs that examine the mine from a variety of perspectives, tracing its physical development as well as its effects on the local economy, culture, environment, and people. Featured artists include Jonas Lie, William Rittase, Andreas Feininger, Jean Arnold, Edward Burtynsky, Robert Smithson, and the Center for Land Use Interpretation, among others. The exhibition also includes photographs of the mine after the massive landslide of spring 2013, the effects of which continue to impact both the mine’s operations and the local economy.
S. J. and Jessie E.Quinney Foundation | Ray, Quinney & Nebeker Foundation
UMFA's Friends of Utah and Western Art (FUWA)
BENT TO A STRAIGHT AND NARROW AT A POINT OF PASSAGE
A fascinating work of language sculpture by groundbreaking contemporary artist Lawrence Weiner is now on view in the UMFA G.W. Anderson Family Great Hall. Purchased by the Museum in 2011 with funds from the Phyllis Cannon Wattis Endowment for 20th Century Art, BENT TO A STRAIGHT AND NARROW AT A POINT OF PASSAGE (1976) is an important addition to the UMFA's permanent collection of contemporary art and represents a canonical moment in art history.
Click HERE for more, including a time-lapse video of the installation process.
salt 9: Jillian Mayer
January 17–August 17, 2014
"What's the point of living offline anymore?" Jillian Mayer asks in her catchy sing-a-long MegaMega Upload. The artist debuted this hip-hop song on her YouTube channel in January 2013 before it premiered as part of her short film #PostModem at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Since then, the video has received 21,000 views and has inspired more than 160 viewer comments. In 2011 Mayer uploaded her song and video I Am Your Grandma, and it's since received 2,445,525 views, 20,895 likes, 1,601 dislikes, and 7,970 viewer comments-not to mention the countless spoofs it's inspired, including choreographed dances and remakes by five-year-olds, an Internet troll, college students, a fake plastic kitty, Darth Vader, Wes Borland, and a Cabbage Patch Kid.
But, what does it mean to upload your soul to the Internet or to leave a timeless video message for your unborn grandchild? Cloaked with humor, fast editing, and pop soundtracks, Mayer's videos are designed for mass appeal but ask big questions about human connection and manufactured realities. Her work lives in, and is activated by, viewer participation. She investigates the (im)possibility of authenticity and the multiplicity of authorship by co-opting the visual language and tools of Google, online chat boards, and viral videos. Indebted to the cultural constructions of the 1980s sitcom but looking ahead to the infinite implications of the Internet, Mayer uses photography, video, drawing, installation, and performance to tease out the pathways and pitfalls of postmodern identity formation while considering our increasing integration with the web and questioning the distinction between reality and the virtual world.
Jillian Mayer (American, b. 1984, lives Miami) received her BFA from Florida International University in 2007. In 2010 her video Scenic Jogging was one of twenty-five selections for the Guggenheim's YouTube Play: A Biennial of Creative Video and was exhibited at Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy; Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain; and Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin, Germany. Recent solo projects include Love Trips at World Class Boxing, Miami (2011) and Precipice/PostModem at Locust Projects, Miami (2013). In 2012 and 2013 Mayer's short films were selected to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. In 2013 Mayer was in residency in Berne, Switzerland, as a Zentrum Paul Klee Fellow and in New York City as an NEA Southern Constellation Fellow.
September 13, 2013–July 27, 2014
Exploring Sustainability is an exhibition of new projects that explore how principles of ecological sustainability and affiliated design strategies are applied to creative thinking and to the design process. During Sustainable Design Practice, the University of Utah studio art course in which this work was created, students gained an overview of the environmental impacts of design and production practices as well as the processes and methods associated with more sustainable approaches. The projects created over the course of the spring 2013 semester are inspired examples of how students integrated sustainable design into their own creative process. The exhibition is intended to stimulate further dialogue among the university and local communities about issues related to sustainability.
THE SAVAGE POEM AROUND ME:
ALFRED LAMBOURNE'S GREAT SALT LAKE
December 13, 2013-June 15, 2014
Alfred Lambourne walked the Mormon Trail in 1866, at age sixteen, to Salt Lake City, sketching during much of the route. By the 1880s he had become a well-known local artist who painted and traveled with Thomas Moran and Albert Bierstadt on their many visits to Salt Lake City. Of the varied landscapes he painted, nothing held his imagination so thoroughly as the Great Salt Lake. Captivated by it, he painted many views of Black Rock, the infinite and varied moods of the weather, and the shipwrecks and the drama of the lake. In 1887 he realized his dream of perfect solitude by homesteading Gunnison Island.
In his book Our Inland Sea: The Story of a Homestead he described the first day of his fourteen-month exile: "Ghostly, wrapped in its shroud of snow, my island stands white above the blackness of unfreezing waters. What have I done? Although I had lived these days by anticipation, no sooner had the sails of the departing yacht vanished below the watery horizon …than I realized at once, and with a strange sinking of the heart…the savage poem around me." This exhibition will explore the art-roughly twenty-five paintings-the many sketches, and the poetry and writing of this unique and beloved pioneer artist and his obsession with the landscape of our "inland sea"—the Great Salt Lake.
Supporting Sponsor: Charles Redd Center for Western Studies
The Center for Land Use Interpretation:
Great Salt Lake Landscan
January 24–May 4, 2014
The Utah Museum of Fine Arts commissioned the Center for Land Use Interpretation (CLUI), a Wendover/Los Angeles-based research organization concerned with how the nation's lands are apportioned, utilized, and perceived, to produce a "landscan" of the Great Salt Lake. Filmed from helicopters, CLUI landscans are dynamic, crystal clear, gyro-stabilized high-definition videos that function as portraits of places. They represent major elements of continental land use, depicting man-affected landscapes so large the only way to visually capture them is with one long, continuous, aerial shot. Accompanied by subtle ambient sound, The Great Salt Lake Landscan flies over brilliantly colored salt concentration ponds and a landscape often described as otherworldly.
Tacita Dean: JG
January 24–May 4, 2014
JG is a new film project by internationally recognized artist Tacita Dean. It is inspired by her correspondence with British author J. G. Ballard (1930–2009) regarding connections between his short story ‘The Voices of Time' (1960) and Robert Smithson's iconic earthwork and film, Spiral Jetty (both 1970). JG tries to respond to Ballard's challenge-posed to Dean shortly before he died—that she should treat the Spiral Jetty as a mystery that her film would solve. Employing her patented technique of "aperture gate masking," in which she uses stencil-like masks to alternately cover up and re-expose her film, Dean combines images shot at different locations and times to generate visual and conceptual juxtapositions within the space of the individual 35mm frame. Shot in central California, Utah's desert, the Great Salt Lake, and even the Hogle Zoo, the film intersperses a variety of salt-encrusted landscapes, machines, and animals with a host of abstract shapes and voids. The viewer experiences time and place in ways that parallel the effects of Ballard's fiction and Smithson's earthwork and film. JG reaches across decades and disciplines, tracing the connection between three distinct artists and their interrelated work.
CLICK FOR MORE
JG was commissioned by Arcadia University Art Gallery and funded by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage and is presented at the UMFA in collaboration with the Salt Lake Film Society.
IN COLLABORATION WITH:
Special thanks to Sundance Institute for their support.
Behind the Scenes: The Textile Preservation Project
The Highlights Wall in the UMFA's entrance showcases the Collections department's textile re-cataloguing project. This mini-exhibition features two textiles from the permanent collection and an informational video about the project and the Museum's important preventative preservation work.
salt 8: Shigeyuki Kihara
August 2, 2013 - Jan 5, 2014
salt 8 features the work of Shigeyuki Kihara, a prominent artist based in New Zealand. Born in 1975 in Samoa to a Buddhist Japanese father and a Christian Samoan mother, Kihara investigates the complexities of cultural identity, colonialism, representation, gender roles, and spirituality through performance, photography, and video. In the UMFA's salt gallery, Kihara presents large-scale looping projections of her 2012 videos Galu Afi and Siva in Motion. Inspired by the traditional Samoan Taualuga dance, both videos are lamentations for the loss caused by the 2009 tsunami as well as poetic meditations on Samoa's colonial past and future climate change. Adjacent to the salt gallery, Kihara stages a photographic intervention with our Pacific Island collection.
Under Pressure: Contemporary Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation
September 5, 2013 – January 5, 2014
This exhibition presents selections from the largest collection of contemporary prints in the United States. Spanning the past five decades, it features works by thirty-nine artists from Jasper Johns and Sol LeWitt to Damien Hirst, Kiki Smith, and Kara Walker. Under Pressure charts an array of artistic and social concerns, from minimalism to pop and conceptual art, and more recent works addressing race, gender, and identity.
Martha Wilson: Staging the Self
August 30 – November 10, 2013
Martha Wilson's career, spanning forty years, encapsulates the contestations inherent in feminist and socially engaged practices. In her work and throughout her life, Wilson has explored how identity and positioning are not just self-defined or projected, but also negotiated. The complex nature of her work encompasses her activities as an artist, creating conceptually-based performances, videos, and photo-text compositions since the early 1970s; her position as the founder and director of the non-profit space Franklin Furnace; and her collaboration with other women to form the group, DISBAND among many other things. Wilson's attitude to collaboration and openness to constantly redefining both personal and collective identities make her a central figure with which to collaborate on producing this exhibition that explores current approaches toward feminism, activism, and collaborative practice.
Martha Wilson: Staging the Self is a traveling exhibition organized and circulated by Independent Curators International (ICI), New York. Guest curator for the exhibition is Peter Dykhuis. The exhibition, tour, and catalogue are made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Cowles Charitable Trust, the ICI Board of Trustees, and ICI Benefactors Barbara and John Robinson.
May 17, 2013 – August 25, 2013
This hands-on, interactive exhibition, in which visitors create the artwork themselves, is inspired by the idea that mark-making is a fundamental human impulse and that there is no wrong way to do it. UMFA educators developed five drawing stations to encourage visitors' creativity: participants can contribute to a chalkboard drawing Museum staff have begun, do free drawing directly on a coffee table, draw from objects in the Museum's permanent collection, create drawings with tape and paper, or contribute to a "metamorphosis" scroll drawing that will take shape over the course of the exhibition and incorporate the creativity of all participating artists. Visitors can also draw inspiration from I See the Fish, Finally, a collaborative, experimental wall drawing created by eight students from the University of Utah art department, who created the work during a three-day drawing "marathon" before the exhibition opened.
Click HERE to view a time-lapse video of the Drawing Marathon.
Bierstadt to Warhol: American Indians in the West
February 15 - August 11, 2013
Bierstadt to Warhol: American Indians in the West is an ambitious exhibition comprising more than 100 oil paintings, sculpture, and works on paper drawn primarily from the Diane and Sam Stewart Collection. It examines depictions of American Indian identity (by both natives and non-natives) in a diverse array of styles: from the traditional European schools to Modernist abstraction and conceptual renderings of cultural motifs. Subject matter focuses on the Pueblo people of Taos and Santa Fe, New Mexico but other important and impactful portraits of American Indians are also included. Artworks range in tone from the romantic and ideal to the utterly real, sometimes taking on sensitive subject matter that is often inherent to contemporary American Indian identity. This exhibition negotiates the devices and implications of portraiture as a historical genre, to show that a portrait can either fashion a mythologized persona or an authentic personal dynamic that speaks to lived experience.
PRESENTING SPONSOR: Sam & Diane Stewart Family Foundation
LEADERSHIP SPONSORS: Wasatch Advisors | UMFA Friends of Utah and Western Art | Naoma Tate | Zions Bank
SUPPORTING SPONSORS: The Mark and Kathie Miller Foundation | Lynn and Tom Fey | Kem and Carolyn Gardner | Jack and Jodi Livingood
Partners: Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine | Benjamin and Lisa Logue | John and Joan Firmage | Barabino Huebner Fund at the Community Foundation | Jacobsen Lake Foundation | Michael and Donna Weinholtz
Mike Disfarmer: Cleburne County Portraits
January 24, 2012 - July 14, 2013
The Coen Brothers, Ralph Lauren and guitarist Bill Frisell are just a few artists who have found inspiration in the photographs of Mike Disfarmer. A small town photographer from Heber Springs, Arkansas, Disfarmer used glass plate negatives to create snapshot-size photographs as keepsakes for the local community. The stark minimalism of his studio backdrops, especially those used during the 1930s and through the war years, effectively isolate his subjects and in doing so create intimate, deeply human portraits of them. The dignity of hard work and the vagaries of rural life can be read in the faces and demeanor of the many people who sat for his "penny portraits."
salt 7: Lynette Yiadom-Boakye
February 21, 2013 – June 23, 2013
salt 7: Lynette Yiadom-Boakye is the seventh installment in the Museum's series of exhibitions featuring new and innovative art from around the world. For her first solo exhibition in the western United States, British artist Lynette Yiadom-Boakye will show never-before exhibited oil paintings. Employing a palette and brushwork not unlike that of traditional western portraiture, Yiadom-Boakye's luscious, gestural paintings consider the role of the black figure, as both subject and author, in the art historical canon. Her ambiguous portraits, composed from various sources and imagination, are purposely void of social, economic, and spatial clues. However, her fictitious subjects often engage the viewer with a direct glance or a furtive grin, projecting agency and inviting viewer interpretation.
Sponsored in part by Nancy and Dave Gill with additional support from Noel Kirnon.
For more information about the salt series click HERE.
September 21, 2012 - April 21, 2013
5 Blocks is an exhibition of youth artwork created in collaboration with UMFA educators by students at Hawthorne Elementary (Salt Lake City School District) and Granger High School (Granite School District). By investigating a five block area near their school, students demystified how we shape the spaces we live in and how those spaces shape us. Through a variety of media, this exhibition shares with viewers what students discovered when they left the classroom and got a chance to engage with the city. During the planning of this exhibition UMFA educators consulted with Damon Rich, a nationally recognized designer and artist who currently serves as the Urban Designer for the City of Newark, New Jersey.
SPONSOR: C. Comstock Clayton Foundation
Dale Nichols: Transcending Regionalism
September 28, 2012 - March 18, 2013
Dale Nichols is well known as the fourth major Regionalist artist, alongside Grant Wood, Thomas Hart Benton, and John Stueart Curry. Their work, created in the Midwest during the Great Depression, defined a period in American art when artists turned toward the land and known narratives in hope of creating uniquely American themes and styles of art.
The UMFA is delighted to offer Dale Nichols: Transcending Regionalism, an exhibition spanning much of his long career. Nichols' early paintings focused on the often-difficult relationship between Midwest farmers and their land. His stylized landscapes and red barns, representing both shelter and sustenance, held images of hope for a struggling nation and honored the agrarian ideal. By the 1940s Nichols indulged his wanderlust, traveling repeatedly to Alaska and spending extended periods of time in Guatemala and Mexico. Paintings from this period are represented in this exhibition as well.
Dale Nichols: Transcending Regionalism is a traveling exhibition organized by the Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art and curated by Amanda Mobley.
S.J. and Jessie E. Quinney Foundation | UMFA Special Exhibitions Council | Ray, Quinney & Nebeker Foundation
salt 6: Emre Hüner
October 26, 2012 - February 10, 2013
Emre Hüner's (Turkish, born 1977, lives Berlin) multidisciplinary practice incorporates drawing, sculpture, video and built environments as well as found objects, artifacts, and samples. By juxtaposing these different objects and practices, he constructs a type of fragmented archive of the past and the future, of fact and fiction, of the manmade and the natural. His non-linear approach and widely varied references open a space for particular moments to be imagined. Questioning ideas of progress and the failure of modernity, his work invites viewers to draw their own connections and create their own narratives. While he touches on problematic political relationships and contentious issues, he does so by mixing independent references that combine to present mythical, yet recognizable, events. salt 6 is the debut of Hüner's 2-part film and installation Aeolian Processes.
Nancy Holt: Sightlines
October 19, 2012 - January 20, 2013
Nancy Holt: Sightlines will offer an in-depth look at the early projects of this important American artist whose pioneering work falls at the intersection of art, architecture, and time-based media. Since the late 1960s, Holt has created a far-reaching body of work, including Land Art, films, videos, site-specific installations, artist's books, concrete poetry, and major sculpture commissions. Nancy Holt: Sightlines showcases the artist's transformation of the perception of the landscape through the use of different observational modes in her early films, videos, and related works from 1966 to 1980. With her novel use of cylindrical forms, light, and techniques of reflection, Holt developed a unique aesthetics of perception, which enabled visitors to her sites like Sun Tunnels (1973-76), located in Utah's Great Basin, to engage with the landscape in new and challenging ways.
Nancy Holt: Sightlines is a traveling exhibition organized by the Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University and curated by Alena J. Williams. Major support for the exhibition and its programs is provided by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in Fine Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.
CLICK HERE for events, directions to Sun Tunnels and more.
Horizon: Selections from the Guild of Book Workers
October 5 - December 30, 2012
Whether by contemplating the apparent horizon, personal horizons, or the horizon of the book as a binding or an object, this exhibition showcases the current work of the members of the Guild of Book Workers while offering a glimpse into what is just beyond. Guild of Book Workers members were invited to interpret "horizon" as broadly or as narrowly as they wish.
Day With(out) Art
December 1, 2012
On Saturday, December 1, 2012 the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA) will participate in its annual observance of World AIDS Day by covering a selected work of art from the permanent collection. This year, the UMFA has chosen to conceal its Auguste Rodin bronze sculpture, Female Torso (V & A), located in the second floor European gallery. The entire sculpture will be covered with a black cloth during visiting hours in recognition of Day With(out) Art, a global event that coincides with World AIDS Day and aims to acknowledge the complex issues surrounding the lives of individuals living with HIV or AIDS. The "absence" of this extraordinary work will serve as a reminder to Museum visitors of the fallen victims to the disease who are now absent, as well as those who continue to suffer from the epidemic and crusade for a cure. The UMFA joins thousands of other institutions on this day, December 1, 2012, in using art to honor individual legacies, commemorate personal loss and to underline the necessity of increased awareness and action to combat the ongoing AIDS epidemic.
Speed: The Art of the Performance Automobile
June 2 - September 16, 2012
This special exhibition explores the art of the automobile, featuring antique and vintage racing cars that exemplify the beauty of vehicles designed for speed. Artistry and engineering come together in these functional yet highly crafted works of art.
June 2 - September 2, 2012
Cars are a pervasive symbol in American art and pop culture. Symbolizing such dichotomous ideas as masculinity and femininity, speed and leisure, industry and nature, the individual and the collective, and the glamorous and the mundane, the automobile lends itself to many interpretations. Photographers have long been inspired by the automobile, attempting to capture and examine its multiple meanings through a lens. This group of photographs from the UMFA's collection showcases the diversity of ways artists have depicted and interpreted the omnipresent automobile.
salt 5: Daniel Everett
March 30 - July 29, 2012
salt 5: Daniel Everett is the fifth in the Museum's series of exhibitions featuring innovative art from around the world. Working in photography, video, and installation, artist Daniel Everett investigates the ways in which the human-made landscape shapes and structures our experience as individuals.
George Rouault: Circus of the Shooting Star / Cirque De L'Etoile Filante
February 3 - May 13, 2012
Artist Georges Roualt was fascinated by the circus, a world where superficial brightness was underscored by overwhelming sadness. The images in his portfolio of etchings, Cirque de l'Etoile Filante (Circus of the Shooting Star), demonstrate Rouault's attempt to strip away the "spangles" of the clown's costume and reveal the "reflection of paradise lost." On loan to the UMFA from the Syracuse University Art Galleries, this exhibition comprises color etchings that introduce the portfolio and wood engravings illustrating Rouault's text. Begun in 1926 and published in 1938, the portfolio was the product of Rouault's collaboration with Parisian publisher and art dealer Ambrose Vollard. Their partnership proved to be one of the most productive in the history of printmaking.
The exhibition is accompanied by a fun-filled family guide and in-gallery activity.
At Work: Prints from the Great Depression
February 10 - May 6, 2012
Organized in collaboration with Dr. Matthew Basso, Assistant Professor of History and Gender Studies and Director of the American West Center at the University of Utah, this exhibition features Depression-era prints focusing on men and women at work, selected from the remarkable collection of Marcia Price and Ambassador John Price. During the years of the government-sponsored Federal Art Project, American printmaking techniques were expanded, and themes of labor were integral to the new print vocabulary. Printmakers, along with other artists, were given an unprecedented sense of purpose when the U.S. government included them in the vast numbers of unemployed workers who could apply for work relief from the Works Progress Administration (WPA).
At Work speaks powerfully to contemporary questions—underscored by anxieties surrounding the great recession—about the place of labor in our lives.
The Faculty Show: Recent Work by The University of Utah Art Faculty
February 17 - May 6, 2012
The UMFA is pleased to present an exhibition of artwork by the acclaimed University of Utah Department of Art and Art History faculty. New works by faculty artists will be on view in the Museum's Great Hall and first-floor galleries. The exhibition reflects trends in contemporary art as well as traditional practices in a variety of media including: ceramics, painting and drawing, sculpture, photography and digital imaging, printmaking, installation, and new media.
Low Lives 4: Networked Performance Festival
Friday, April 27 | 6:30-9:30 pm and Saturday, April 28 | 1:00-4:00 pm
FREE with general admission
Experience the merging of performance and technology in Low Lives 4! The UMFA is pleased to be the central presenting venue for this international festival, which features live performance-based artwork streamed online and projected in real-time at venues around the world. Don't miss your chance to meet Low Lives curator Jorge Rojas and view more than fifty live performance pieces from nine countries, including on-site performances at the UMFA by featured artist Michelle Ellsworth. www.lowlives.net and www.michelleellsworth.com
salt 4: Xaviera Simmons
November 18, 2011 through February 26, 2012
salt 4: Xaviera Simmons is the fourth in the Museum's series of exhibitions featuring innovative art from around the world. New York-based Xaviera Simmons uses photography, as well as other mediums including installation and performance, to construct multivalent narratives of collective and personal histories. Simmons's work often references traditions of American landscape painting, exploring depictions of the individual in nature. In her large-format photographs, scenery becomes a central character, harboring the stories of immigrants and migrants. Archetypal figures, like sages and nomads, serve as conduits for open-ended narratives embedded in the land, allowing entrance into, in the artist's words, "other characters, narratives, and geographies." In addition to photography, the exhibition includes a sculptural installation made of hand-lettered, locally found wooden scraps—materials chosen for their ubiquitous use in vernacular signage—affixed directly to the gallery wall. This tangled matrix of text gleaned from notes, conversation, news articles, folklore, poetry, and literature, forms its own kind of lyrical landscape, imbued with historical and personal memory.
LeConte Stewart: Depression Era Art
July 21, 2011 through January 15, 2012
In an exciting collaboration, the UMFA has teamed up with the Church History Museum to stage the largest exhibition ever mounted of Utah artist LeConte Stewart's work. With a combined total of over 200 paintings and drawings selected from museums and private collections across the west, these joint exhibitions will feature masterworks that have rarely been seen. The shared effort focuses on the most creative and skilled period of Stewart's long career.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE ON THE ARTIST, BOTH EXHIBITIONS, PROGRAMMING, DIRECTIONS, AND VIRTUAL RESOURCE
September 16, 2011 through January 8, 2012
Containing a diverse range of artworks from around the world, Color explores the relationship of color to artists and audiences. This exhibition utilizes over twenty pieces from the UMFA's permanent collection, using color as a connector across cultures and time. This exhibition includes works by artists Robert Motherwell, Alex Katz, Anna Campbell Bliss, and more. While visiting the exhibition, be sure to use the hands on, in-gallery color collage wall to create your own color compositions. This exhibition is funded as part of the UMFA's Art in a Box program and is presented in conjunction with the debut of the new statewide box, Art in a Box: Color.
Final Light: V. Douglas Snow in Retrospect
August 31, 2011 through January 8, 2012
The Utah Museum of Fine Arts and Salt Lake Art Center are pleased to present Final Light: V. Douglas Snow in Retrospect, a collaborative exhibition celebrating the work of eminent Utah landscape artist, V. Douglas Snow (1927-2009). Museum visitors and long-time admirers will have the opportunity to encounter Snow's large body of work at two local art venues.
Africa: Arts of a Continent
On view through September 4, 2011
This ambitious exhibition of African art objects drawn from the UMFA’s permanent collection centers on themes of the spirit world and afterlife. Africa: Arts of a Continent explores the spiritual and political power of Central African masks, the magic and mystery of ancestral African sculptures, and the enduring beauty of African objects used in everyday life. The installation debuts of one of the UMFA’s newest acquisitions: a late XXVIth Dynasty Egyptian sarcophagus.
salt 3: Cyprien Gaillard
May 26 - August 21, 2011
salt 3: Cyprien Gaillard is the third in the UMFA's new series of exhibitions that showcase the work of contemporary artists from around the world. The films and installations of French artist Cyprien Gaillard (b. 1980) examine contemporary landscapes and architectural ruins of the recent past, engaging with artistic traditions of Romanticism and Land Art. His work was featured in the 2011 Venice Biennale.
Don Olsen: Abstracts from Nature
December 2010 through August 14, 2011
The exhibition Don Olsen: Abstracts from Nature, on view in the G.W. Anderson Family Great Hall, celebrates the 100th birthday of abstract artist Don Olsen (1910-1983). Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, Olsen's work was misunderstood because it represented a style unfamiliar to Utah audiences. Today, however, he is acknowledged as one of the most influential and gifted abstract artists to have worked in the region. A student of Hans Hoffmann, Olsen created abstract expressionist works using volume, color, and shapes taken from nature. Large-scale paintings spanning forty years will highlight the most prominent work in his oeuvre.
Helen Levitt Photographs
February 24 through July 17, 2011
One of the great photographers of the twentieth century, Helen Levitt took the activity of city streets as her primary subject, paying special attention to the children for whom the street served as a playground. This presentation of photographs drawn from the UMFA's collection includes representative works from the late 1930s and early 1940s-when Levitt emerged as a key member of the New York School photographers-as well as later photographs from her long and accomplished career.
The Smithson Effect
March 10 through July 3, 2011
The Smithson Effect is the most ambitious contemporary art exhibition ever organized by the Utah Museum of Fine Arts. Through sculpture, video, photography, installation, and sound art, The Smithson Effect will introduce you to twenty-three of the world's leading contemporary artists, whose work is influenced by the legacy of artist Robert Smithson (1938-1973).
CLICK HERE for more information on The Smithson Effect.
Collecting Knowledge: Renaissance Cabinets of Curiosity
January 27 through May 15, 2011
Collecting Knowledge: Renaissance Cabinets of Curiosity explores items that were typically found in cabinets of curiosity in sixteenth and seventeenth century Europe, including prints, books, scientific instruments, and objects obtained through travel. This exhibition examines the people who created cabinets of curiosity, their strategies for classifying and grouping items, and how they used this knowledge to make sense of their world.
During Fall Semester 2010, four graduate students in the University of Utah Department of Art and Art History gained first-hand knowledge of the work involved in creating an exhibition. The result of their hard work is the exhibition Collecting Knowledge: Renaissance Cabinets of Curiosity. The students were advised by Professor Sheila Muller and they worked closely with UMFA staff to complete all necessary steps for curating an exhibition— from developing exhibition themes to selecting the objects; from writing the object label text to planning the exhibition design; and from securing related public programs to creating an effective marketing plan.
Low Lives 3
April 29 • 6-10 pm and April 30 • 1-4 pm
Now entering its third year–and hosted by the UMFA for the first time–Low Lives is an exhibition of works transmitted via the internet and projected in real time at multiple venues around the world. This project was curated by University of Utah alum Jorge Rojas and featured a live performance by New York-based artist Kristin Lucas, organized by UMFA curator Jill Dawsey.
salt 2: Sophie Whettnall
November 18, 2010 through February 27, 2011
salt 2: Sophie Whettnall is the second in the UMFA's new series of exhibitions that showcase the work of contemporary artists from around the world. Belgian artist Sophie Whettnall (b. 1973) works mostly with photography, video, and multimedia installations, yet she was trained as a painter and much of her work retains a rich, painterly quality. Whettnall engages the temporal nature of video as a medium, creating images that inhabit a space between stillness and activity as they develop over time. Frequently training her camera on the landscape, she explores the relationship between the self and its surroundings in a world of increasing transience and dislocation.
salt reflects the international impact of contemporary art today, forging local connections to the global, and bringing new and diverse artwork to the city that shares the program's name.
Trevor Southey: Reconciliation
October 21, 2010 through February 13, 2011
This retrospective of the life and work of Utah-based artist Trevor Southey gives prominence to four life passages that have defined Southey's character and his art: his youth in Rhodesia and education in England; his life as a married, practicing Mormon and his desire for a utopian lifestyle created around family, farming, and art; Southey's decision to acknowledge his homosexuality in 1982, which coincided with the first major public awareness of the AIDS epidemic; and the reconciliation of his life decisions as expressed in his revised artistic approach to the human form.
PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION ON TREVOR SOUTHEY: RECONCILIATION
Faces: Selections from the Permanent Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art
October 21, 2010 - February 13, 2011
Faces: Selections from the Permanent Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art brings together classic works of Pop Art from the UMFA's permanent collection, as well as more recent works influenced by Pop, with a focus on the human face and figure. Many works in the exhibition take the form of portraits, such as Alex Katz's series of screen prints depicting young people in the 1970s, or ironic self-portraiture, as in Robert Arneson's Untitled Trophy (Bust Of Bob) (1978). Faces also includes a series of Andy Warhol's Polaroid portraits, a recent gift from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, on view for the first time. Ranging from portraits of the rich and famous-among them, Pia Zadora, Yves Saint Laurent, and artist Keith Haring-to unknown figures, Warhol's Polaroids reveal the idiosyncrasies of his subjects.
Yayoi Kusama: Decades
October 21, 2010 - February 13, 2011
Yayoi Kusama: Decades offers a focused presentation of exemplary works by renowned Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. A key figure in the New York art world of the late 1950s and 1960s, Kusama's pioneering work has galvanized subsequent generations of artists. From her early watercolor paintings of the 1950s to her "accumulation" sculptures of the 1960s, to recent, large-scale "infinity nets" paintings, the exhibition highlights works from each decade of the artist's long career.
The Ideal Landscape
October 7, 2010 - February 6, 2011
This exhibition brings together thirteen Chinese landscape paintings dating from the Ming dynasty to the twentieth century. These artworks do not recreate a landscape, but instead conjure an ideal scene imagined by the painter. As a result, these depictions of mountains and bodies of water offer expressions of the artist's heart and mind.
Community: Eat, Work, Play
May 6, 2010 - January 9, 2011
Community: Eat, Work, Play is a collaborative exhibition between the UMFA and Lincoln Elementary school. With the help of UMFA educators, first and sixth grade students will create large-scale murals to be installed in the Museum's education gallery. Each group will take on one aspect of the theme, either eat, work or play, and explore visually how that idea is represented in their community.
Painting Utah's Mount Olympus
July 8 through November 14, 2010
Mount Olympus is not the tallest mountain in the Wasatch Range but anyone who has seen this awesome natural wonder will agree with the early pioneers who bestowed it with the Greek name for ‘the home of the gods.' Indeed, Mount Olympus stands today as an imposing, silent sentinel, a powerful symbol of nature's transcendent beauty for the residents of the modern metropolis that has grown at its foot. For the past century and a half, some of Utah's most talented artists [Lee Greene Richards, Gilbert Munger, Edwin Deaken, Anton Rasmussen, David Meikle and others] have attempted to do justice to Mount Olympus...not an easy task for mere mortals and yet through their work, the home of the gods is immortalized in Painting Utah's Mount Olympus.
Las Artes de Mexico from the Collection of the Gilcrease Museum
May 6 - September 26, 2010
Las Artes de México explores the richness of Mexican art and culture, from the ancient work of the Mayans and Aztecs through the twentieth century. The exhibition includes a broad array of artifacts such as woven fabrics, masks, and religious objects from Mesoamerica (pre-Conquest Mexico) as well as paintings by modernist masters like Rufino Tamayo, Jose Clemente Orozco, and Diego Rivera.
salt 1: Adriana Lara
May 6 - September 26, 2010
Concurrent with Las Artes de México, the UMFA announces the launch of an ongoing series of semiannual exhibitions entitled salt, which will showcase work by emerging artists from around the world. salt aims to reflect the international impact of contemporary art today, forging local connections to the global, and bringing new and diverse artwork to the city that shares the program's name. The inaugural salt exhibition features the work of Mexico City-based artist Adriana Lara (b. 1978), whose work explores the relationship between art-making and other more commonplace forms of production. Lara takes the exhibition format itself as an object of inquiry, arranging objects in unexpected, sometimes humorous configurations that foreground and dismantle the conventions of displaying and looking at art.
Lara is part of numerous collective art projects such as Pazmaker, a free distribution zine-like publication, Lasser Moderna, an experimental music band, and "Perros Negros," an art production office that proposes new platforms for discussion and artmaking. She has had solo exhibitions at Artpace, San Antonio, Texas (2009); Gaga Arte Contemporaneo, Mexico City (2008); Galería Comercial, San Juan, Puerto Rico (2007); and Air de Paris, Paris, France (2007). Her work has been included in many group exhibitions, including San Juan Poly/Graphic Triennial, Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña, San Juan, Puerto Rico (2009); Galerie Isabella Bortolozzi, Berlin, Germany (2009); The Generational: Younger than Jesus, New Museum, New York (2009); and LA MAMAIN ET LA PUTAIN, Air de Paris, Paris, France (2006).
Pablo O'Higgins: Works on Paper
February 18 – September 19, 2010
Experience a selection of lithographs by the late Pablo O'Higgins, an artist dedicated to creating heroic depictions of the working class in revolutionary Mexico. Although he is virtually unknown in his home state of Utah, O'Higgins is remembered and celebrated in Mexico as a true artist "of the people."
The Continuing Allure: Painters of Utah's Red Rock
January 13 - June 27, 2010
To love the western landscape is to embrace the subtlety of a vast and mysterious desert terrain. Among the artists who conquered the obstacles of painting Utah's red rock country were Maynard Dixon, Edgar Payne, and Conrad Buff, just a few of the notable painters represented in this exhibition.
Influences of the Silk Road
November 5, 2009 - April 25, 2010
What do jade, chess, the camera obscura and Hinduism have in common? They were all exchanged on the Silk Road, of course! The Silk Road was a series of routes that crossed through Europe, the Middle East, and Asia from the first millennium B.C.E. through the second millennium C.E. In this alluring exhibition, visitors of all ages can explore objects from the Museum’s permanent collection that either traveled on the Silk Road or reflect the religions, technologies, and goods that were exchanged en route. Families and students will enjoy a treasure hunt through the exhibition and other galleries, get educational insight through an easy-to-use audio tour, and even satisfy their senses at a spice sniff station.
Splendid Heritage: Perspectives on American Indian Art
February 10, 2009 - March 1, 2010
The UMFA is proud to premiere an extraordinary exhibition of cultural and artistic treasures from the John and Marva Warnock Collection. Splendid Heritage presents 149 objects of unique artistry and cultural expression from the Native people of the Northeast and Plains.
For extended information about the exhibition and related programming please click here.
Desert Secrets: Photography from the UMFA's Permanent Collection
On view through January 31, 2010
Desert Secrets presents provocative images of Southwestern deserts, exploring the histories hidden in these vast, seemingly barren and uninhabited spaces. Using both traditional photographic techniques as well as newer forms of digital imaging and surveillance technology, the featured photographers engage themes of technological intrusions into the land; nuclear testing; clandestine military operations; conspiracy theories; and the mysterious appearance of the desert landscape itself.
Desert Secrets will be complemented by Patrick Nagatani's Nuclear Enchantment, a virtual exhibition highlighting Nagatani's work.
Then & Now: Selections from the Permanent Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art
Through September 20, 2009
This exhibition of modern and contemporary art from the UMFA’s permanent collection brings together key works from the last five decades. The 1960s and 70s saw sweeping changes in society and politics, as well as in the realm of art, with many artists responding to pressing political concerns. Then & Now highlights parallels between art and societal events both of the past and of our own moment, featuring a special video presentation by acclaimed British artist Phil Collins, entitled baghdad screentests (2002).
Karl Bodmer: Beyond the Frontier
February 27 - June 21, 2009
Explore the lives of native people and wild landscapes of the American West in this exhibition of large-scale prints by artist and adventurer Karl Bodmer. The exhibition features an original copy of Travels in the Interior of North America, a journal published in 1839 that documents the New World expedition of explorer Alexander Philipp Maximilian through Bodmer's artwork. View impressive aquatint engravings of Bodmer's drawings and sketches, and discover the new nation of America as seen by European explorers.