Media Archive: Contemporary Art

Hélio Oiticica Retrospective at CMOA

CMOA to stage colorful, spectacular, immersive exhibition of Brazilian artist Hélio Oiticica

Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium
Carnegie Museum of Art
October 1, 2016–January 2, 2017

High-resolution images are available.

Hélio Oiticica; PN1 Penetrable (PN1 Penetrável), 1960; Oil on wood; César and Claudio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro

Hélio Oiticica; “PN1 Penetrable (PN1 Penetrável),” 1960; Oil on wood; César and Claudio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro

Pittsburgh, PA…Visitors to the exhibition of Brazilian artist Hélio Oiticica (1937–1980) at Carnegie Museum of Art (CMOA) can expect to walk across sand and pebbles, traverse bold, colorful structures, and say hello to a friendly Amazon parrot. That’s part of the experience of Tropicália (1966–67), a massive, multisensory installation at the heart of Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium.

If Tropicália is a kind of journey into the artist’s immersive work, then Eden (1969) is the destination. This huge installation includes spaces and structures for relaxation, reading, conversation, and music. Its surfaces provide tactile experiences for bare feet: strewn with sand or leaves, a pool of water. Occupying the majestic Hall of Sculpture at CMOA, it is rarely staged due to its size and complexity. The exhibition is the most complete retrospective of the artist to date, and the first to explore in depth his New York years (1971–78). Ambitious in scale, it presents a stunning array of paintings, interactive sculptures, audiovisual works, and environments across the museum’s expansive Heinz Galleries and Hall of Sculpture.

Hélio Oiticica in front of a poster for the play Prisoner of Second Avenue, in Midtown Manhattan, 1972; Facsimile of photograph; César and Claudio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro, AHO/PHO 1931.72

Hélio Oiticica in front of a poster for the play Prisoner of Second Avenue, in Midtown Manhattan, 1972; Facsimile of photograph; César and Claudio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro

One of the most influential artists of the 20th century, Oiticica first painted compositions made of geometric shapes that seemed to dance off the painted surface. He soon moved into creating immersive, experiential works, exploding color into three dimensions. For the artist, these works were completed only when viewers interacted with them. Throughout the 1960s and ’70s, Oiticica moved further and further toward art that is intended for the viewer to manipulate, wear, and inhabit, including Parangolés, works to be carried or worn that often contain poetic or political messages only visible when the wearer is in motion, or Penetrables, colorful structures inspired by makeshift dwellings in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro. While living in New York, Oiticica extended his work into filmmaking, slide show environments, and concrete poetry. Shortly before his return to Rio he again began inventing structures for human interaction.

Nildo of Mangueira wearing P15 Parangolé Cape 11, I Embody Revolt (P15 Parangolé capa 12, Eu incorporo a revolta, 1967), ca. 1968; Facsimile of photograph; César and Claudio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro, AHO/PHO 1995.sd–p3

Nildo of Mangueira wearing “P15 Parangolé Cape 11, I Embody Revolt (P15 Parangolé capa 12, Eu incorporo a revolta, 1967),” ca. 1968; Facsimile of photograph; César and Claudio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro

Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium brings visually arresting, wholly original artwork to Pittsburgh for an experience unlike any other. After its CMOA presentation, the exhibition will travel to the Art Institute of Chicago and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

Hélio Oiticica is organized by Lynn Zelevansky, Henry J. Heinz II Director, Carnegie Museum of Art; Elisabeth Sussman, Sondra Gilman Curator of Photography, Whitney Museum of American Art; James Rondeau, Dittmer Chair and Curator, Department Modern and Contemporary Art, The Art Institute of Chicago; and Donna De Salvo, Deputy Director for International Initiatives and Senior Curator, Whitney Museum of American Art; with Anna Katherine Brodbeck, Associate Curator, Carnegie Museum of Art.

Support

Support for Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium is generously provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Carnegie Musuem of Art Fellows, the James H and Idamae B. Rich Exhibition Endowment Fund, Nancy and Woody Ostrow, and the Martin G. McGuinn Art Exhibition Fund.

General operating support for Carnegie Museum of Art is provided by The Heinz Endowments and Allegheny Regional Asset District. Carnegie Museum of Art receives state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

 

Carnegie Museum of Art

Carnegie Museum of Art enriches people’s lives through art. The museum is committed to global engagement and regional advancement. We champion creativity and its importance to society with experiences that welcome, inspire, challenge, and inform. Our core activities—collecting, conserving, presenting, and interpreting works of art—make those experiences possible. Our world-class collection of over 30,000 works emphasizes art, architecture, photography, and design from the 19th century to the present. One of the four Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Museum of Art was founded by industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie in 1895. Learn more: call 412.622.3131 or visit cmoa.org.

 

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The Propeller Group; Still from The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music, 2014; video, color, sound, 21 min.; Carnegie Museum of Art; A.W. Mellon Acquisition Fund

Captivating new video work opens October 23

The Propeller Group: The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music
October 23–February 15, 2016
Forum Gallery

Pittsburgh, PA…Carnegie Museum of Art (CMOA) presents a special evening screening and talk with artist collective The Propeller Group to open its fall Forum Gallery exhibition, The Propeller Group: The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music on October 22. The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music is a spectacular visual and musical journey through the fantastical funerary traditions of South Vietnam. Created by The Propeller Group, and recently acquired by CMOA, the video follows brass band musicians, spiritual mediums, professional criers, and street performers through the mournful and euphoric public ceremonies of a multi-day wake: a set of colorful rituals that resonate with funeral traditions in New Orleans and other parts of the “global south.”

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Eric Crosby named Richard Armstrong Curator

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 18, 2015

Contact: Jonathan Gaugler | gauglerj@cmoa.org | 412.688.8690 / 412.216.7909

Eric Crosby named Richard Armstrong Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at CMOA

Pittsburgh, PA…Lynn Zelevansky, The Henry J. Heinz II Director of Carnegie Museum of Art (CMOA), announced today the appointment of Eric Crosby to the position of Richard Armstrong Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art. Crosby, who will join the CMOA staff in October, is currently Associate Curator of Visual Arts at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he has worked since 2009.

Eric Crosby; Photo: Bryan Conley; Courtesy of Carnegie Museum of Art

Eric Crosby; Photo: Bryan Conley; Courtesy of Carnegie Museum of Art

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Jacqueline Humphries; Untitled, 2015; oil on linen; courtesy of the artist and Greene Naftali, New York

Jacqueline Humphries Opens June 11 at CMOA

CMOA Exhibition Showcases a New Body of Work by Humphries

Jacqueline Humphries
June 11–September 28, 2015
Forum Gallery + the Coatroom Gallery
Carnegie Museum of Art

Over the course of her nearly 30-year career, Jacqueline Humphries (b. 1960, New Orleans) has emerged as a singular force in contemporary art, an influential “artist’s artist” whose signature abstract works in metallic and ultraviolet pigments must be experienced firsthand. Jacqueline Humphries is the artist’s first solo museum exhibition in nearly a decade, and the first to include both her silver and black-light paintings. The exhibition debuts a new body of works, created with Carnegie Museum of Art’s (CMOA) unique spaces in mind.

Culture Club: Opening Party, Jacqueline Humphries
June 10, 7-9 p.m. / FREE
Join Jacqueline Humphries and exhibition curator Amanda Donnan for a first-look at this new body of work.

High resolution images are available for download.

Humphries’s densely layered, atmospheric canvases activate, and are activated by, the space around them. The muted metallic surfaces of the silver paintings respond to shifting natural light and change with the movements of the viewer, positioning abstract painting as a theatrical, time-based art. “I think a painter’s first job is to get someone to look at a painting,” she says. “Perhaps it’s about motion and light. Having a heightened sense of the painting changing in front of your eyes gives it an almost cinematic quality—light moves across the surface and makes new images before your eyes.” The black-light paintings reveal their true nature—and actually emit light—only when “excited” by ultraviolet bulbs. These paintings are hung in a darkened environment, immersing viewers in spectacular fluorescence, and amplifying their awareness of viewing, and being viewed by others. Both bodies of works self-consciously engage the history of art and refer to popular culture as well, melding the drips, zips, and Ben-day dots of mid-century abstraction with psychedelia and cinema’s silver screen.

While in dialogue with history, Humphries’s work also acknowledges the ways pictures have changed in the era of screen culture, using painting as one (no less viable) tool among many for making new images. With the purchase of an industrial stencil cutter for her studio, she has begun incorporating repeating patterns into her work, layering planes of dots, x’s, emoticons, and canvas weave over and in with expressionistic swaths of brushstrokes. While her work has often alluded to the image space of cinema and television, Humphries’s most recent work suggests the stacked and simultaneous planes of computer screens.

Methodically built up and then scraped, smeared, and painted over again, the surfaces of Humphries’s paintings are unstable topographies that alternately cohere and disintegrate, inviting close looking but escaping total apprehension; the viewer and painting work together in a continually unfolding experience. As a result, her works are impossible to truly see online. They demand you be here, now, with them, and that you really look.

Jacqueline Humphries is the 74th installment in Carnegie Museum of Art’s Forum series. The exhibition is organized by Amanda Donnan, assistant curator of contemporary art, and will open with a free, public reception on the evening of June 10, 2015. It will travel to Contemporary Art Center New Orleans in November 2015.

 

Support
Support for Jacqueline Humphries is provided by the Juliet Lea Hillman Simonds Foundation, Jill and Peter Kraus, Christopher M. Bass, Wendy Fisher, Candy and Michael Barasch, The Benjamin M. Rosen Family Foundation, the Ruth Levine Memorial Fund, Danielle and David Ganek Family Foundation of the Jewish Communal Fund, and Greene Naftali, New York.

Culture Club is sponsored by Great Lakes Brewing, Macy’s, and Bill Few Associates.

General operating support for Carnegie Museum of Art is provided by The Heinz Endowments and Allegheny Regional Asset District. Carnegie Museum of Art receives state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

 

Carnegie Museum of Art
Located at 4400 Forbes Avenue in the Oakland section of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Museum of Art was founded by industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie in 1895. One of the four Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, it is nationally and internationally recognized for its distinguished collection of American and European painting, sculpture, and decorative arts from the 19th century to the present. Founded in 1896, the Carnegie International is one of the oldest surveys of contemporary art worldwide. The Heinz Architectural Center, part of Carnegie Museum of Art, is dedicated to enhancing understand of the built environment through its exhibitions, collections, and public programs. The Hillman Photography Initiative serves as an incubator for innovative thinking about the photographic image. For more information about Carnegie Museum of Art, call 412.622.3131 or visit our website at www.cmoa.org.

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Gohar Dashti; Untitled #5, 2008; From the series Today’s Life and War; Inkjet print; Courtesy of Gohar Dashti

Preview She Who Tells a Story

Exhibition opens May 30, advance media tours are available

In Arabic, the word rawiya means “she who tells a story.” The photographs in She Who Tells a Story: Women Photographers from Iran and the Arab World are a collection of visual stories about contemporary life in Iran and the Arab world. 

Preview the exhibition

Members of the media may arrange a preview visit to She Who Tells a Story. Curator-led visits are available between Wednesday and Friday, May 27–29.

Please contact Jonathan Gaugler:
gauglerj@cmoa.org | 412.688.8690 (desk) | 412.216.7909 (mobile)

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The exhibition, opening May 30 at Carnegie Museum of Art, introduces the pioneering work of 12 leading women photographers who have tackled the very notion of representation with passion and power, questioning tradition and challenging perceptions of Middle Eastern identity. Their provocative work provides insights into questions of personal identity and the complex political and social landscapes of their home regions in images of great sophistication, expressiveness, and beauty.

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