Urgent Museum Notice

Art Fix Friday: November 11, 2022

Blog Category:  Art Fix Friday
A black-and-white photograph of a light-skinned adult woman holding a newspaper with news about World War II. She wears a coat and her short, curly hair is caught in the wind.

Lee Bontecou, known for evoking post-apocalyptic worlds through her innovative works that blend sculpture, painting, and drawing, died at 91. Her massive wall reliefs made of steel, canvas, and twisted wires received public acclaim and institutional backing in the 1960s, typically reserved for male artists at the time. Bontecou was one of the first women whose art was shown at the influential Leo Castelli Gallery.

A black-and-white photograph of a woman with a light skin tone standing in front of a sculpture. The woman has blonde, short hair and looks directly into the camera. The sculpture is made from metal and resembles parts of an airplane.
The artist Lee Bontecou with one of her sculptures at the Leo Castelli Gallery in Manhattan in 1966, as one of the first women whose work was shown there; Photo courtesy Fred W. McDarrah/MUUS Collection, via Getty Images

Her art was influenced by her use of materials, such as saw blades and actual war material, like helmets and gas masks, with which she created her sinister motifs. “My most persistently recurring thought is to work in a scope as far-reaching as possible, to express a feeling of freedom in all its necessary ramifications—its awe, beauty, magnitude, horror, and baseness,” Bontecou said in 1993. “This feeling embraces ancient, present, and future worlds: from caves to jet engines, landscapes to outer space, from visible nature to the inner eye.”

Front-Page Femmes

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. uses a $10 million gift to purchase works by women artists in order to address historical gaps in the museum’s collection.

A photograph shows an interior of a room overlooking the New Mexican desert. The room is in beige tones and has a wood ceiling. Through big windows, plains and a mountain are visible in the distance. The color palette inside resembles the colors outside.
Studio, Georgia O’Keeffe Home and Studio, Abiquiú, New Mexico, 2019;
Photo by Krysta Jabczenski, © Georgia O’Keeffe Museum

Artnews features 18 preserved studios of famous female artists that are open to the public, including those of Georgia O’Keeffe, Frida Kahlo, and Suzanne Valadon.

Institutional critique artist Andrea Fraser is now represented by Marian Goodman gallery, which will be her first U.S. commercial representation in more than a decade.

Artsy explores the surreal paintings of self-taught artist Cece Philips, whose works reimagine race and gender in a cosmopolitan setting.

Artnet features Hedda Sterne, whose career intersected with some of the most important movements of 20th-century art, including Abstract Expressionism.

The newly opened Rubell Museum brings contemporary art to Washington, D.C., including works by women artists such as Carrie Mae Weems, Jenny Holzer, and Tschabalala Self.

A new exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts in London shines a light on German Expressionist women who made a mark on Modernism.

Artsy features the works of Danielle Mckinney, whose lyrical paintings act as a site of reconciliation between her Black female identity and the possibility of rest and freedom.

The Age of Roe at Harvard’s Schlesinger Library explores how the 1973 Supreme Court decision reshaped American culture and politics, including materials that require looking beyond the traditional liberal-feminist frame.

Shows We Want to See

A colorful collage shows a joyful family scene in a living room. Two girls with a dark skin tone sit on a sofa in front of a TV, while the rest of the family sits and stands by a table playing cards. There are several black-and-white photographs of Martin Luther King and men and women with a dark skin tone in small, cut-out frames.
Judy Bowman, Mom On Seneca, 2020; Mixed media collage on canvas; Courtesy of the artist.

Gratiot Griot at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit is the first solo museum exhibition of mixed-media artist Judy Bowman, whose works are inspired by stories of African American life and the rich cultural tapestry of life across the African diaspora. On view through March 25, 2023.

MFA Boston presents Body Awareness: Maria Lassnig’s Experimental Films, which celebrates Austrian artist Maria Lassnig’s pioneering work on film, featuring 16 pieces that explore physical sensation, autobiography, friendship, and New York City. Although Lassnig (1919–2014) is best known as a painter, she started experimenting with film and animation in 1970. On view through April 2, 2023.

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