Harvard Art Museums To Exhibit Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States

  • CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts
  • /
  • March 26, 2015

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Pat Steir, Very Pretty Waterfall for Herb and Dorothy, 1996–97. Oil on canvas. Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States, a joint initiative of the Trustees of the Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection and the National Gallery of Art, with generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, 2008.330.14.
© Pat Steir. Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College

Over the next 18 months, the Harvard Art Museums will present a series of special and temporary exhibitions and unveil a new commission, all showcasing modern and contemporary art and the unique role of the university teaching museum. From video and multimedia by Jesse Aron Green, to vibrant pop art by Corita Kent, to works by Indigenous artists of Australia, including the first ever comprehensive analysis of the materials they use—these and other upcoming exhibitions will invite visitors to view art in new and different ways.

“While the majority of our installations and programming draw on the historic nature and concerns ofour vast permanent holdings, there is clearly a renewed emphasis on modern and contemporary artacross all media at the new Harvard Art Museums,” said Thomas W. Lentz, the Elizabeth and JohnMoors Cabot Director of the Harvard Art Museums.

That very dialogue embodies the new commission by Mexican artist Carlos Amorales, on view in themuseums’ historic Calderwood Courtyard beginning April 17. Amorales has taken as his starting pointthe traditional musical triangle and created a kinetic mobile of graduated aluminum shapes that willhang from the rafters of the new glass roof designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop. The sculpture is designed to offer a new collective experience for visitors to the museums; all floors of the arcade galleries—and their works on display—will be visible through the web formed by the hanging sculpture.  

The museums have also refreshed some current special exhibitions. Twelve works on paper in Mark Rothko’s Harvard Murals have been turned to show further relevant sketches by the artist on theirreverse, and nine new studies have also been added. Rebecca Horn: “Work in Progress” nowfeatures three large-scale Bodylandscapes drawings by the artist, replacing her projected films. A casewith three works created during the November activation of Horn’s sculpture Flying Books under BlackRain Painting has also been added.

Coming up this Spring is:

The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States

May 23–August 9, 2015

University Study Gallery and Art Study Center, Harvard Art Museums

In 2008, the Harvard Art Museums were among the 50 recipients of a national gift program thatdistributed 2,500 works from Dorothy and Herbert Vogel’s personal collection of contemporary art tomuseums in all 50 states. The Vogel collection encompasses a broad array of works by conceptual andminimalist artists of the 1970s and ̓ 80s, including several artists who were not previously represented inthe museums’ collections.

This exhibition marks the first presentation of the couple’s entire gift to the museums. The works on display in the museums’ University Study Gallery reflect the depth andbreadth of the couple’s collection and feature works by Robert Barry, Lynda Benglis, Pat Steir, and Richard Tuttle, and complement the works on view in the Collections Galleries. In addition to the works displayed in the University Study Gallery, prints and drawings by Richard Tuttle will be available in themuseums’ Art Study Center, where visitors will be invited to experience the work in quiet contemplation,examining a portfolio in sequence as a collector might. These works will be available for viewing on Mondays from 1 to 4pm, and by appointment.


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