Happy 150th Birthday, Edvard Munch!
Edvard Munch, The Scream, 1893
Edvard Munch, The Scream, 1893
December 7, 2013 – March 16, 2014
The second exhibition in UMMA’s Flip Your Field series is guest curated Larry Cressman, artist and Professor of Art at the University of Michigan. Drawing from UMMA’s extensive collection of photographs, Cressman will present two contrasting arrangements of photographic imagery. Click here to read more, and come see the exhibition today!!
UMMA’s Galleries are open Tuesday through Saturday 11am – 5pm, and Sunday 12 – 5pm. Admission is ALWAYS FREE!
Image: Ansel Adams, Aspens Northern New Mexico, 1958, gelatin silver print, UMMA, Gift of Harry H. Lunn, Jr., 1982/2.75
Max Beckmann's Begin the Beguine is one of UMMA’s most prized possessions, purchased a mere two years after it was painted. While the painting itself is rather confusing, the title is not. A beguine is a slow, rolling dance for couples that comes from the islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe. The song “Begin the Beguine,” however was written by the prolific pianist Cole Porter in the 1930s. It became popular after Artie Shaw’s big band produced a swing version of it, which can be heard here:
The song has been recorded by a wide variety of artists, from Ella Fitzgerald to Sheryl Crow. This version has Frank Sinatra singing the lyrics:
And finally, my personal favorite, Art Tatum’s solo piano rendition:
By Joseph Kemeny
Image: Max Beckmann, Begin the Beguine, 1946, Oil on canvas, University of Michigan Museum of Art purchase, 1948/1.103
UMMA’s newest exhibition, Fragments from the Past: Islamic Art from the Collection of the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, has stunning examples of art that span across time periods, geographic regions, and dynasties. One of my favorite works is the Ayyubid silver and gold inlayed metal basin. An epigraphic band encircles the basin praising Sultan al-Malik al-Salih as “the wise, the just, the assisted, the victorious, the defeater” (as translated on the museum placard). A little self-centered there, eh? Ah, but he is a second-time offender: On the famous Freer basin, held in the Freer Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., he is once again described as “illustrious, learned, efficient, the lord of Islam”. Evidently, the idea of art as a form of self-expression, and sometimes a form of self-worship persists into today—just ask Kanye West…
By: Amanda Peters
Earlier this year, artist Paul Blomkamp revealed the largest portrait of Nelson Mandela to celebrate his 95th birthday. Blompkamp was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1949.
His next project is the "Mandela Head in the Karoo" where he will form an image of Mandela’s face with millions of shrubs. Blompkamp explained, “It will endure as a living memorial to the qualities this great man has shared so uniquely with the World. The ‘HEAD’ will also be viewed from space and images will be constantly relayed back to Earth to provide an ongoing animated image of Mandela’s face that will last for as long as our Planet spins in our Universe.”
The life of a great man to be further honored with great art.
A black dot here, a yellow starburst there, and a rectangle.
That’s how one of the pieces at the Adolph Gottlieb: Sculptor exhibit at the U-M Museum of Art (on view through January 5, 2014.) appears to the untrained eye. But scholars at the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies see Gottlieb’s work as remarkable, both in terms of Jewish and art history. Click here to read more.
Image: Adolph Gottlieb, PETALOID, 1968, painted steel.
November 30–April 13, 2014
The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology’s collection of Islamic art ranges from the eighth to the nineteenth century and reflects the brilliant diversity of the cultural traditions of Islam. Fragments from the Past: Islamic Art from the Collection of the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology features vessels, architectural fragments, furniture, and other artifacts from Egypt, Syria, Turkey, Iraq, and Iran that reveal the aesthetic attention paid by artisans to the objects of everyday life. These objects demonstrate the interplay of function and form in artisanal traditions, and the designs and patterns revealed on the exquisitely detailed fragments presented are a testament to the many stories that run through the pasts of these peoples and cultures.
Click here to read an article about the exhibition published by The Michigan Daily.
IMAGE Clockwise from top: 1) Bowl, KM 0000.02.9962; 2) Pen Box, KM 0000.02.8802; 3) Horse Figurine, KM 1961.06.0060; 4) Footed bowl, KM 1990.02.0008; 5) Flask KM 1969.03.0036. Selections from the Islamic Collection of the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology. Photo by Steve Kuzma.