As the Cincinnati Art Museum enters the last month of 'Isn't It Great to Be an Artist?,' the debut exhibit of its bold new Robert A. Lewis Collection of (mostly) folk and outsider art, the show has sparked much discussion about the perennial question of "What is art?"
As Eric M. Lee, whose last day as director of Taft Museum of Art is Friday, prepares to lead the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Tex., he leaves behind a smash-hit show: Fashion in Film: Period Costumes for the Screen. “We are trying to reach out to a broader audience with this show and it’s succeeding,” he says. “Our attendance is phenomenal.
Citing diminishing returns, the Cincinnati Art Museum has ended its relationship with Cincinnati World Cinema, a presenter of art films, classics, shorts collections and documentaries that had been using its auditorium since 2007. That has left the future unclear for those who feel Cincinnati needs a non-commercial outlet for such specialized films that otherwise wouldn't play here.
Donald Sultan is considered a painter's painter. That means that, while not widely familiar to the general public, other artists and museums respect him for the influential originality of his vision and technique. The Contemporary Arts Center has just organized and opened a modestly sized show, 'The First Decade,' bringing together key paintings of Sultan's from the mid-1970s through the early 1980s. The exhibit, curated by Raphaela Platow, will be on display through May 17.
Almost 15 years after Robert A. Lewis decided to bequest his collection of modern-era outsider/folk and contemporary art to a museum, it finally makes its debut at one firmly committed to keeping it: the Cincinnati Art Museum, starting Saturday. And, befitting the evolution of popularity of outsider art, what a strange trip it has been for Lewis.
As we enter a new year, my biggest wish for Cincinnati’s visual-arts scene in 2009 is a simple one — that we can hold onto what already is here. Lots of people in the local arts are struggling, along with the greater economy, and that puts what they’re doing at risk.
Here are the 10 art shows that left the most impact on me in 2008, presented in no particular order and with regrets to the other fine exhibitions that just didn’t quite make this admittedly subjective list.
Museums have not been immune to the nations economic meltdown Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Arts endowment has calamitously plunged and Cincinnatis Contemporary Arts Center had to lay off five people, including its public relations director.
In recent months, the government has pledged hundreds of millions of dollars to help out banks, investment houses, insurance companies and others ensnared by the mortgage-crisis-induced financial meltdown. Auto companies might be next. Our new president should consider reviving the Federal Writers Project, a Great Depression-combating New Deal program that put some 6,600 people, not all of them trained writers, to work.
As curator of education at Contemporary Arts Center, Scott Boberg cares deeply about the visual impact and meaning of words. One of his jobs is to write the informational wall text accompanying the art at the museum. He's also interested in the impact of words and other message-laden symbols as an artist. His "Sign Song" is the current art show at Semantics Gallery, up through Nov. 29.
Yes! That was my first response upon seeing Carlos Amorales' new show, Discarded Spider, at downtown's Contemporary Arts Center (CAC). This show works perfectly in the gallery spaces of the Zaha Hadid-designed building, whose many angles and openings have proved the master of too many prior CAC shows.
Toledo can be visited on a day trip, although you do have to save a good three or four hours to really see the museum's campus with its monumental, Ioniccolumned classical-style main building, additions and outdoor sculpture. Fridays are especially convenient for a visit, as the museum - which has free admission - is open 10 am.