The RISD Museum Announces 2011 Spring Schedule

Architecture, Art and Design Exhibitions

By: - Feb 09, 2011

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The RISD Museum is one of the great college/university art museums in the world. Recently, it announced a new schedule of exhibitions for 2011: 


Cocktail Culture Apr. 15 – July 31, 2011 Cocktail Culture: Ritual and Invention in American Fashion 1920-1980 is one of the largest exhibitions of costume and textiles in The RISD Museum’s history. From Prohibition to disco, cocktails and fashion ritualized the passage of time and helped men and women navigate the sweeping social changes that defined 20th-century American life. Cocktail culture — and the fashion that defined it — succeeded in unifying diverse groups of people while providing a means of vibrant personal expression. This groundbreaking exhibition includes more than 220 objects, including clothing, textiles, and decorative and fine art largely drawn from the Museum’s vast holdings.

Cocktail Culture features a stunning array of apparel by major designers such as Cristóbal Balenciaga, Pierre Balmain, Geoffrey Beene, Pierre Cardin, Chanel, Christian Dior, Fortuny, Hubert de Givenchy, Halston, Elizabeth Hawes, Charles James, Mainbocher, Norman Norell, Pucci, Oscar de la Renta, Arnold Scaasi, Elsa Schiaparelli, Simonetta, Pauline Trigère, and Madeleine Vionnet. The exhibition also includes examples of photography by Martin Munkacsi, Aaron Siskind, and James Van Der Zee; illustrations by Gordon Conway, John Held Jr., and Miguel Covarrubias; and decorative art by Victor Bergeron, Norman Bel Geddes, Gorham Manufacturing Company, Lurelle Guild, Vera Newman, and Russel Wright, and jewelry by René Lalique, Swarovski, Trifari, textiles by Laverne Originals, Stehli Silks, and Vera are contextualized with novelty items such as sleek Art Deco barware and a 1940s tiki bar from Japan. Cocktail Culture is sponsored by Swarovski. Additional support is provided by The Coby Foundation.

Building Blocks: Contemporary Works from the Collection May 6, 2011 – March 25, 2012 Building Blocks will feature contemporary sculpture, painting, photography, prints, video, and collage that illuminate relationships between architecture and art and heighten our perception of the spaces around us. In some cases, artists engage with the structural possibilities of architectural form, and in others, the elements and characteristics of architecture are explored and represented through a new lens. Some works depict, or are, actual buildings; others investigate abstract delineations of space and volume through the use of basic forms such as cubes and planes. With a diverse selection of media, materials, technique, and scale, the exhibition includes works by Jennifer Bartlett, Brian Chippendale, Buckminster Fuller, Sol LeWitt, Ron Nagle, Mimi Smith, Sarah Sze, Lucy Williams, and B. Wurtz, among others.

Corinna Schnitt: Once Upon a Time Mar. 18 – Nov. 6, 2011 German filmmaker and artist Corinna Schnitt explores absurdity in the everyday. With a studied humor and critical eye, Schnitt’s short films and videos explore social narratives, cultural clichés, and patterns of behavior that shape the individual in a “normal” society. In Once Upon a Time (2005), she turns the camera on a population of animals that inhabit a middle-class living room. As the animals take over, expectations of domesticity unravel. The exhibition features a video projection of Once Upon a Time, as well as a selection of Schnitt’s short films and videos from 1995 through 2005.

Jacques Callot and the Baroque Print June 17, 2011 – Jan. 22, 2012 Highlights from The RISD Museum’s extensive and superb collection of prints by Jacques Callot (1592-1635) are on view in the exhibition Jacques Callot and the Baroque Print. The work of this prolific French artist shaped the subject matter and appearance of prints throughout Europe in the early 17th century. The exhibition explores the themes of Callot’s art — including religious martyrdoms, pageantry, and war — alongside his technical innovations in the medium of etching. Prints by contemporaries of Callot, such as Jacques Bellange, Stefano Della Bella, Claude Lorrain, Jusepe de Ribera, and Rembrandt van Rijn are included to provide a broader context for his work. An interactive model showing Callot’s groundbreaking technique is also on view.

Conrad Shawcross: Pre-Retroscope VI (Gowanus Canal Journey, NY) July – October 23, 2011 Pre-Retroscope VI is a handmade row boat built by artist Conrad Shawcross (British, b. 1977) and used for an expedition of New York City’s Gowanus Canal, in Brooklyn, in 2009. Equipped with a video camera on a revolving motorized track, Shawcross captured 360-degree panoramic views of the body of water and its urban surroundings while rowing the boat. Presented in the gallery, a video projector and small screen replace the camera on the boat’s circular track, displaying “panoramic” footage from the journey. Pre-Retroscope VI (Gowanus Canal Journey, NY) is being acquired by The RISD Museum through the Richard Brown Baker Fund for Contemporary British Art.

RISD 2011 Faculty Biennial February 25 – March 20, 2011 The RISD Faculty Biennial, a longstanding tradition, is an exciting opportunity to view new studio work by the extraordinary artists and designers who teach at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). This exhibition features work by 207 full- and part-time faculty — nearly 30 more than participated in the Museum’s last Faculty Biennial, in 2009. The works featured are as varied as the many departments and divisions in which the faculty teach — ranging from apparel, textiles, painting, printmaking, ceramics, glass, sculpture, illustration, photography, jewelry and metalsmithing to graphic design, industrial design, architecture, landscape architecture, interior architecture, film, animation, digital media, furniture, and more.


Brian Knep: Exempla Through Mar. 6, 2011 Brian Knep, a Boston-based new-media artist, uses science and technology to create interactive artworks that sense and react to the people around them. The little creatures featured in Knep’s Exempla, with exaggerated heads and skeletal legs, are based on children’s drawings and illustrate the interconnected and impermanent nature of the human condition.

Changing Poses: The Artist’s Model Through June 5, 2011 Changing Poses: The Artist’s Model looks at the human figure as an enduring subject for artists. Drawn from The RISD Museum’s permanent collection, this exhibition shows how the model was a crucial component in the creation of some of its finest holdings of drawings, prints, and photographs. The show includes works by Edgar Degas, Mary Cassatt, John Singer Sargent, Andy Warhol, and many others.

Collision Through June 19, 2011 This group exhibition presents exhilarating juxtapositions of artworks and processes as they collide with, and are layered on top of, one another. Embracing flexibility and open-endedness, the result is a vibrant environment that echoes the cultural loss and chaos created by the insertion of the new. Inspired by Robert Rauschenberg’s “combines” and his belief that the world can be viewed as a “gigantic painting from which to crop,” guest curator and abstract painter Jackie Saccoccio (RISD BFA ’85) invited 17 artists to contribute to an ongoing installation as they see fit, with several artists working directly on the gallery walls.


The Figure: Contemporary Works from the Collection Through Apr. 17 2011 The human figure, one of the oldest motifs in the history of art, is represented here in a range of mediums and approaches — including painting, printmaking, sculpture, video, and needlework.

Prints for the Japanese New Year Through Apr. 17, 2011 This exhibition features Japanese woodblock prints of the 18th and 19th centuries that depict the customs, beliefs, and auspicious symbols associated with the New Year.

From Dover to Penzance: Watercolor Views of the English Channel Through June 5, 2011 Drawn from the Museum’s permanent collection, this exhibition features views of the English Channel by a selection of the period’s most talented and prolific watercolor specialists.

Kutch Quilts from South Asia Through May 8, 2011 This show features a collection of colorful patchwork and quilts that are part of the rich tradition of embroidered textiles created by nomadic peoples of Northwest India and Pakistan.

Ancient, Medieval, Early Renaissance and European Galleries The galleries that house these collections — among the finest in the country— were recently renovated and reinstalled in thematically engaging ways as part of the Radeke Restoration Project.

Subject to Change: Art and Design in the Twentieth Century The Paula and Leonard Granoff Galleries display masterworks of painting, sculpture, furniture, ceramics, drawings, photographs, costume, textiles, and industrial design from 1900 to 2000.

Impressionist Galleries Important works by Monet, Degas, Manet, Cézanne, Gauguin, Matisse, Morisot, Picasso, Pissarro, and Rodin are exhibited in intimate galleries that overlook the internal garden of the Museum’s stately 1920s Radeke Building.

Pendleton House Recognized as the earliest example of an American "wing" in any museum, Pendleton House displays the Museum's distinguished collection of decorative arts including 18th- and 19th-century furniture, American painting and sculpture, Gorham silver, English ceramics, Chinese export porcelain, and French wallpaper.

A Grand Gallery: European Paintings from the Permanent Collection The beautifully proportioned Main Gallery displays the Museum's collection of masterpieces from the Renaissance through the early 19th century in an installation that recalls the deeply stacked galleries of French and British salon exhibitions.

American Art from the Permanent Collection The elegant, Beaux Arts–style Waterman Galleries feature landscapes acquired in the Museum’s early years of collecting, including works by Thomas Cole, Winslow Homer, and John Singer Sargent.

Exine by Paul Morrison The RISD Museum of Art commissioned the dramatic composition Exine, by British artist Paul Morrison, for the walls of the Norman and Rosalie Fain Family Education Program Gallery.

About the Museum

Southeastern New England's only comprehensive art museum, the Museum of Art Rhode Island School of Design — also known as The RISD Museum — was established in 1874. Its permanent collection of more than 86,000 objects includes paintings, sculpture, decorative arts, costume, furniture, and other works of art from every part of the world — including objects from ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome, and art of all periods from Asia, Europe, and the Americas, up to the latest in contemporary art. The Museum also offers a wide array of educational and public programs to more than 100,000 visitors annually.