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2020 | Trimpin: Ambiente432

EXHIBITION | Opens January 14, 2020
Pavilion Gallery

In 2016, the museum commissioned Trimpin, a ground-breaking composer and sculptor, to design and create a major new work for the WSU community. Ambiente432 debuted at the inauguration of the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art and has now entered the museum’s permanent collection. This January the work will be restaged in the gallery space it was originally designed for.

Comprised of 12 motion-responsive resonator horns suspended from the ceiling and organized in strategic configurations, this site-responsive installation explores the sound-space continuum, demonstrating how an architectural environment may coexist and harmonize with a kinetic sound sculpture. Like much of his previous work, Trimpin’s installation combines ancient methods with scientific principles and 21st-century technology. Ambiente432 is tuned precisely to 432Hz. Known as Verdi’s ‘A’, this vibration frequency recurs in the tuning of ancient Tibetan singing bowls, Stradivarius instruments, and 20th-century physicist W. O. Schumann calculated the Earth’s rhythms at a cycle close to the fundamental frequency of 432Hz. Ambiente432 is ‘played’ by visitors themselves as they move through and activate the space, impacting their own immersive spatial and aural experience. » More …

2019 | Polly Apfelbaum: Frequently the Woods are Pink

Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation

EXHIBITION | August 27, 2019 – March 14, 2020
Creighton Gallery, Bruce/Floyd Gallery, Borth Gallery, Smith Gallery
Artist Lecture | September 4, 4-5 pm, CUB Auditorium, Reception | 5-6 pm, Museum Gallery

Polly Apfelbaum: Frequently the Woods are Pink, Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation features unique prints of extraordinary complexity from this renowned American artist. Apfelbaum creates worlds of visual wonderment. The artist’s maximalist aesthetic posits a startling idea: Beauty, exuberance, and chromatic energy are conduits to social unity. Her works convey a welcoming space where juxtaposition of seemingly incongruous colors and patterns find shared equilibrium hinting at a society in peace.

Marking the artist’s first survey exhibition dedicated solely to her ambitious printmaking practice, more than 60 works on paper have been selected between the years 2004 and 2018. The exhibition will highlight a wide-range of Apfelbaum’s printmaking methods with a collection of one-of-a-kind monoprints taking center stage. Her recent Atomic series arose from a process similar to that of her installation works, such as her “fallen paintings” consisting of many dyed fabric components the artist arranges in situ on the floor. Relatedly, these kaleidoscopic print works were created with assistants at Durham Press who inked hundreds of woodblocks in assorted colors and patterns. The artist then spontaneously placed the blocks in printing jigs to explore different color combinations and compositions. Created quickly, each monoprint serves as a kind of printed sketch, revealing unexpected moments of variation and fluidity.

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2019 | Chiho Aoshima: City Glow

Animation in Collaboration with: Bruce Ferguson, 2005

EXHIBITION | August 20 – December 14, 2019
Pavilion Gallery

“The evolution of human civilization is great; humankind thinks nature is precious, but it is difficult for humankind and nature to coexist. I represented these two souls that cannot understand each other through the images of buildings and mountains.” – Chiho Aoshima

The museum is pleased to present Chiho Aoshima’s City Glow made possible through a prestigious loan from the Museum of Fine Arts Houston. In 2005, Aoshima collaborated with the New Zealand-based animator Bruce Ferguson to create City Glow, her first animation. This five-channel video work is a meditation on humankind’s strained relationship with nature, where forces of good and evil vie for control of the land. Using dreamlike imagery and bright colors of Japanese anime, the seven-minute narrative opens in a beautiful garden filled with exotic foliage and creatures. Gradually, a modern city of anthropomorphic skyscrapers grows from this tranquil and lush wilderness. As night falls, the city becomes a haunted wasteland; finally, demonic ghosts are banished by winged spirits, and nature flowers once again.

Born in 1974 in Tokyo, Japan, Aoshima studied economics at Hosei University in Tokyo before dedicating herself to making art. Though not formally trained, Aoshima’s drawings and videos show the influence of Japanese popular culture including traditional scroll painting and Ukiyo-e printing as well as contemporary Manga comics and animated media. She has also been associated with Superflat, an art movement founded by artist Takashi Murakami which explores consumerism in post-war Japanese culture. Her 2015 exhibition, Chiho Aoshima: Rebirth of the World at the Seattle Art Museum, featured the video work City Glow. Aoshima has had additional solo exhibitions at Blum & Poe, Los Angeles in 2002; the Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin, Paris in 2007; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston in 2007; the Foundation Joan Miró, Barcelona, Spain in 2008; and the Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech in 2014. Aoshima lives and works in Tokyo, Japan.
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2019 | Night Stars: The Aiken Collection

Comprised of 24 works by 16 artists

EXHIBITION: July 23 – Ongoing
Wright/Harmon Gallery

Artworks, like night stars, are seen across time and space—with us yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

The Mary Margaret and Richard Aiken Collection of Late Twentieth Century Works on Paper focuses on American print works created between 1965 and the mid-1990s. Comprised of 24 works by 16 artists, the collection includes artworks by renowned American artists Jennifer Bartlett, Helen Frankenthaler, Robert Rauschenberg, and Frank Stella, with additional works by international artists Francesco Clemente and Kiyoshi Saito. The artworks are bright, bold and expressive, yet artistically diverse, with examples of Abstract Expressionism, Color Field, Pop art, and Minimalism. When originally acquired by the Aikens, these artists were heralded as masters of modern and contemporary art. How then do today’s viewers consider these now-historic works, in many instances three to five decades later? Across time and space they continue to reside with us, constituting a startling range of art-making approaches and visual-culture benchmarks.

The Aiken Collection is part of a larger whole. Formed in 1973, the museum’s permanent collection has grown from President Ernest O. Holland’s founding collection of 19th and 20th century American Post-Impressionism to holdings now totaling 3800 unique objects. The collection is many things; a repository of carefully selected artworks and documents, preserved and made accessible; a historical record of visual culture; but most importantly, a tool toward learning and enriched experience. » More …

2019 | Closer to You: Performance Films from On the Boards

May 21 – August 10, 2019

Closer to You inaugurates a new and vital partnership between the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU and On the Boards (OtB), a renowned Seattle-based arts organization. Both institutions incubate and support artists’ boldest experiments and biggest ideas. At the forefront of contemporary performance, OtB works with preeminent international artists who are defining the future of dance, theater, and music. OtB’s partnership with the WSU Schnitzer is it’s first with a museum, and it will bring today’s best contemporary performance films by today’s most provocative artists to the WSU community. These individuals are prestigious award winners—MacArthur and Guggenheim Fellows—and influential contributors to heralded exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston, and the Venice Biennale.

The exhibition Closer to You, features three groundbreaking live works, available to subscribers of OtB’s innovative film subscription service. The films are unique, extraordinarily crafted creations constructed to bring you as close as possible to the live experience. After selecting a performance, OtB works collaboratively with a professional filmmaking company, the hosting venue, and the artist to plan the details of each shoot. Live performances are captured with four to five high-definition cameras positioned in the audience. After filming, the video is edited, in consultation with the artist, to determine the best representation of the artist’s work. Closer to You intimately connects our audiences to these exquisite projects embodying the best in life-enriching, forward-thinking art. » More …

2019 | Louise Bourgeois: Ode to Forgetting

From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation

EXHIBITION: May 21 – August 10, 2019
Bruce/Floyd Gallery, Borth Gallery, Smith Gallery

ABOUT | The exhibition Louise Bourgeois: Ode to Forgetting focuses on prints and textile works the artist made in her 80s and 90s. Many of the works incorporate fabrics and embroidery, reflecting a lifelong interest in textiles connected to Bourgeois’ childhood years in her family’s business of tapestry restoration. Explorations of time and memory were of importance throughout her life and career, and are especially palpable in these late works.

Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) is one of the most renowned artists of the 20th century. For more than ninety years, Bourgeois made drawings daily, beginning in childhood and continuing until her death at age 98. She made art because she had to, and described her practice as a means of survival, a lifelong managing of vulnerabilities, traumas and nightmares. As she put it directly, “Art is a guarantee of sanity.” » More …

2019 | Social Space: From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation

Mark Bradford, Leonardo Drew, Julie Mehretu, and Wangechi Mutu

EXHIBITION: January 15 – March 9, 2019

ABOUT | Social Space brings together the work of four renowned American artists: Mark Bradford, Leonardo Drew, Julie Mehretu, and Wangechi Mutu. In their art, they share a commitment to abstraction, not only as a means of powerful image making, but also as a politically conscious act. In their depictions of labor, race, and conflict, these artists highlight sociopolitical markers and visual remnants of collective experience and the social fabric from which they emerged.

The term ‘Social Abstraction’ has been associated with Bradford’s practice of combining society’s ephemera with the now 100-year-old genre of abstraction. Bradford’s art reflects “the white noise out there in the streets,” using the discarded materials of urban life. Drew’s paper casts employ processes of weathering, decay, and absence. These are themes the artist links to the housing projects and adjacent landfill where he lived as a child and teen. Countering utopian urges, Mehretu’s dense works resemble complex maps of social networks, upheaval, and human migration, and Mutu’s dismembered relic-like forms evoke past violence and conflict.

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2018 | Kate Gilmore: In Your Way

EXHIBITION: October 16 – December 22, 2018

ABOUT | Kate Gilmore: In Your Way features ten works—nine performance-based videos and one live performance/sculptural installation—by this New York-based artist known for synthesizing multiple artistic mediums including performance, video, sculpture, and painting. In her videos, Gilmore critiques and also inserts herself into male dominated movements such as Abstract Expressionism and Minimalism, exploring feminist themes and modern and contemporary art tropes, all the while exhibiting relentless determination. The spilling and splattering from her work are an ode to Abstract Expressionism or 1950s stripe paintings. Her works are mischievous and political, as well as humorous and critical of the heroic language and absence of women in these artistic movements. The physical situations and actions Gilmore creates for herself and her performers are metaphors for challenges women face culturally and socially.

According to exhibition catalogue contributor Amy Smith-Stewart, “The videos, performances, and sculptures of Kate Gilmore forge relational encounters that rearrange our thinking about structures of power. Gilmore’s protagonists which are exclusively female within the videos and are almost always herself, attack the ways in which we perceive gendered notions of strength, authority and control in our social arena.”

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2018 | Fine Arts Faculty Exhibition Self•ish: Doug Gast, Joe Hedges, and Io Palmer

EXHIBITION: August 21 – October 6, 2018
RECEPTION: Tuesday, September 11th, 12:00-1:30 pm

Fine Arts Faculty Exhibition Self•ish: Doug Gast, Joe Hedges, and Io Palmer

ABOUT | The museum has a long-standing tradition of presenting work by department of Fine Arts faculty members. Previously, these exhibitions have alternated large group shows with a biennial exhibit showcasing a recently retired faculty member. This year the museum will introduce a new format in which select members of the faculty present current work in thematic-based exhibitions.

Self•ish features the work of Doug Gast (WSU Tri-Cities), Joe Hedges (WSU Pullman), and Io Palmer (WSU Pullman). Though varied in process and mediums, all three artists have assembled an exhibition reflecting on a central theme—the formation and depiction of personhood within our multifaceted and progressively digital era. Using his own self-image, Hedges’ work speaks to fragmented identities through online storage and distortion, whereas Gast’s project probes the margin of private and public image use across popular image-sharing platforms. Lastly, the work of Palmer takes a laborious view of a culture’s insatiable appetite for abundant images and adornment.

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2019 | Master of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition

EXHIBITION:  April 2 – May 4, 2019
RECEPTION:  Friday, April 12, 6:00-8:00 pm

ABOUT | This annual showcase is the culmination of two or more years work by the Master of Fine Arts graduate candidates. With its wide range of art-making approaches, this thesis exhibition provides a stimulating experience for faculty, students and museum visitors. This year’s MFA candidates are Bridgette Costa, Megan Culbertson, Diana Norely Fernandez Ortiz, Brett McElmurry, Ayanna Z. Nayo, Dustin M. Regul, and June T. Sanders.

Traveling from many places to join the cohort at WSU, these student-artists have engaged in an intense two-year interdisciplinary studio program. They met regularly with faculty members for group and individual critiques. Visiting artists and scholars provided diverse one-on-one insight into their creative work. Each artist sharpened their confidence, convictions, and skills. Their MFA Thesis Exhibition is a focused conclusion, yet it also marks an exciting transition toward their professional careers.

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