On Saturday, March 12, the Farnsworth Art Museum will open Farnsworth Forward: The Collection—a timely reinterpretation of its nationally recognized collection. The exhibition will offer visitors a new gallery experience presenting seldom-seen works, perennial favorites, as well as recent contemporary gifts to the collection. In addition, the Museum is announcing its spring/summer line-up of new shows.
Farnsworth Forward, organized by Guest Curator Suzette McAvoy, presents new acquisitions in conversation with historical works. Organized along four themes—Origins to a New Century, Emerging Modernism, Embracing Abstraction, and Diverse Viewpoints—Farnsworth Forward highlights the growing diversity of the collection and Maine, underscoring new understandings of the relationship between cultural identity, history, and place.
Other exhibitions opening this spring at the Farnsworth are:
I Hold the Cracked Mirror Up to Man featuring Leonard Baskin’s monumental prints, made between 1954 and 1998, opens Saturday, April 16. A writer, teacher, sculptor, printmaker, book designer, calligrapher, and illustrator, Baskin’s monumental prints present the dark side of humanity. Carnivorous birds and predatory humans merge into universal symbols of degradation and despair. Life-size figures cry out against nuclear war, lynching, and the Nazi genocide of the Jews. On view will be a series of six prints depicting the Holocaust in starkly nightmarish scenes conceived toward the end of his career. Hebrew inscriptions integrated into his compositions give meaning to imagery that is sometimes ambiguous and complex, often referencing classical and biblical sources rather than the vernacular of the time they were created.
Andrew Wyeth: Islands in Maine and Andrew Wyeth: Early Temperas opens Saturday, April 23. Although Andrew began painting Maine when he and his family first spent summers in Port Clyde, Islands in Maine explores islands in Muscongus and Penobscot Bay, and were painted from 1939 through 2008, when the artist and his wife spent his final summer on Benner Island. Early Temperas explores the creative process behind four of Wyeth’s first tempera paintings. Created between 1937 and 1939, the temperas are accompanied by a selection of Andrew’s studies in watercolor, pencil and ink, this work marks a pivotal group of years in the young artist’s life and his embrace of a new medium.
- Ashley Bryan: Beauty in Return celebrates this year’s Maine in America honoree and opens Saturday, May 28. The exhibition recognizes the significant and lasting contributions to Maine and American art by distinguished artist, author, storyteller, and teacher, Ashley Bryan. Bringing together examples of the artist’s work from throughout his long career, including paintings, illustrations, puppets, and stained glass, the exhibition is a joyful celebration of the enduring power of art and the human spirit over adversity.
Due to popular demand, the museum’s current exhibition Betsy’s Gift: The Works of N.C., Jamie, and Andrew Wyeth, which closes in the museum’s Hadlock Gallery on April 3, will reopen in the Farnsworth’s Wyeth Center on Saturday, June 11, and run through the end of the year.
The Farnsworth’s 2022 exhibitions are made possible in part thanks to the sponsors of the Farnsworth’s Exhibition Development Fund, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Maine Arts Commission.
For more information regarding these upcoming exhibitions visit the museum’s website at www.farnsworthmuseum.org. The Farnsworth Art Museum celebrates Maine’s ongoing role in American art. It offers a nationally recognized collection of over 15,000 works from many of America’s greatest artists. The Farnsworth has one of the largest public collections of works by sculptor Louise Nevelson, while its Wyeth Center features works of N.C., Andrew, and Jamie Wyeth. The National Register-listed Farnsworth Homestead; the Olson House, a National Historic Landmark; and Julia’s Gallery for Young Artists complete the museum complex.
Farnsworth Art Museum
16 Museum Street
About Farnsworth Art Museum
Celebrating Maine’s Role in American Art, the Farnsworth Art Museum offers a nationally recognized collection of works from many of America’s greatest artists. With 20,000 square feet of gallery space and over 10,000 works in the collection, there is always something new on view at the Farnsworth. The museum houses the nation's second-largest collection of works by premier 20th-century sculptor Louise Nevelson. Its Wyeth Center exclusively features works of Andrew, N.C. and Jamie Wyeth. The Farnsworth's library is also housed in its Rockland, ME, campus. Two historic buildings, the Farnsworth Homestead and the Olson House, complete the museum complex.