28. September 2011 12:51
As one of the largest collaborative artistic efforts ever across Chicago, The Soviets Art Experience has joined together twenty-six art museums throughout the city. The showcase is 16 months long and features numerous artists and their works in response to a communist Soviet Union. The events began in August of 2010 and end in January 2012, so be sure not to miss the remaining few months. These exhibitions present powerful imagery and propaganda from this period and help to create an understanding of what it was like. It includes art, dance, concerts, lectures, and classes that are created and put on by numerous prominent artists.
The Mary and Leigh Block Museum is one among many participants and their Views and Re-Views: Soviet Political Posters and Cartoons exhibition shows us a post-Cold War assessment through posters, cartoons, and photomontages. It is on view now and will run through to December 4th. The exhibition examines these images and the meaning behind stylistic tendencies that are often times suggestive and reinforcing a government message.
The David and AlfredSmart Museum’s Vision and Communism exhibition presents the work of Soviet artist Viktor Koretsky whose emotionally-charged images vividly depict controversies and issues from this time of turmoil. This exhibition opens on September 29 and will be on view until January 22nd. The Smart Museum’s Film Studies Center is also presenting footage by Aleksandr Medvedkin who documents tumultuous events from 1968-1969. These films can be seen on October 12th, 19th, and November 2nd at 7:00 pm at the Film Studies Center. The Smart Museum is also host to another exhibition associated with the Soviets Art Experience, Process and Artistry in the Soviet Vanguard, on view now until January 22nd. This exhibition features works by Gustav Klucis and Valentina Kulagina, and shows a rare look at the creative processes that created the iconic Soviet propaganda. From preparatory drawings all the way to mass produced posters, you can see the stages and progression of these art forms into a political message.
This amazing collaboration demonstrates how Chicago artists and art institutions can come together to present a conjoined depiction of a dim time in history. Through the images and other infused mediums this powerful experience will leave you wanting more. Please check out this site for remaining exhibition dates and events going on throughout the remaining months.
29. September 2010 10:03
Groundbreaking Buddhist Cave Temple Exhibition at The Smart Museum of Art
Deep in the mountains of northern China, the Buddhist cave temples of Xiangtang-shan existed as a major cultural achievement of the 6th century Northern Qi dynasty until the early 19th century, when the site was stripped of its sculptures for sale on the international art market. Echoes of the Past: The Buddhist Cave Temples of Xiangtangshan at the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago examines the religious and artistic significance of these caves through their ancient objects; it also imagines the site as it once was, using innovative digital reconstructions.
A monumental bodhisattva begins the exhibit on a traditional note; style, iconography, religious context, and the removal of the sculptures from the caves is desc-ribed. Because Xiangtangshan was damaged so extensively, it has been all but impossible to understand the rich and complex artistic achievement of the caves and visualize their original appearance.
The most unique element to the exhibit, is its basis: a multi-year research project involving scanning and digital simulations. In 2004, the University's Center for the Art of East Asia launched "The Xiangtangshan Caves Project: Reconstruction and Recontextualization," an ongoing project to identify, locate, and document dispersed cave carvings. Using sophisticated 3-D equiptment, the project's imaging team photographed and scanned nearly 100 objects from museums and private collections believed to be from Xiangtangshan.
Organized by the Smart Museum and the Smithsonian Institution's Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Echoes of the Past is on view September 30-January 16, 2011, before embarking on a tour to Washington DC, Dallas, and San Diego.
Celebrate the exhibition opening Thursday, September 30, with a performance by members of Kansas City's Spoonbender Orchestra. Free, 5:30pm.