There will be a lot of art-moving this week in the galleries. Some works on paper are being retired to the vault to rest. Some works are changing locations, and some newly acquired works are going out on exhibit for the first time at Crystal Bridges.
It’s fairly rare for a museum to completely swap out an entire major gallery the way Crystal Bridges recently reinstalled our 1940s to Now gallery. But less sweeping art movements over the course of a few weeks still serve to keep the guests’ experience fresh, and give curators a chance to change groupings of artworks to shift the focus a bit. We view and think about Norman Rockwell’s Rosie the Riveter, for example, in a very different way now that she hangs next to Janet Sobel’s Hiroshima than we did when she hung in a context of 1940s images of industry and labor.
Some new works by American women artists will be debuting this week: Untitled, 1951, by Helen Frankenthaler; and recently acquired works by Louise Bourgeois: Connecticutiana, 1944 – 1945; and Untitled, 1947. Along with Georgia O’Keeffe’s Jimson Weed, which debuted at Crystal Bridges not so long ago, and installation of works by Alice Aycock, Nancy Graves, Ruth Asawa, and Marisol, the Museum’s collection as presently exhibited has a strong representation by American women.
The men should not feel left out: there is also an exhibition in the 1940s to Now gallery of self-portraits by American male artists, including works by artists as diverse as Stuart Davis, Joseph Stella, Will Barnet and Milton Avery. Though if you want to be sure of seeing Chuck Close’s fascinating self-portrait made of paper pulp in various shades of gray, you will need to get here today, as that work will be returned to the vault later this week.
Today is also the last time to view George Rickey’s elegant mobile sculpture One Fixed Four Jointed Lines Biased, 1988, which has graced the Museum’s courtyard since opening day in 2011. It will be returned to the vault tomorrow to make way for a new courtyard installation in July.
Our collection continues to grow and evolve! Each time you visit, you may be surprised by a new acquisition or offered a new arrangement of old favorites. Come in soon and take a fresh look!