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Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Unveils 2019 Exhibitions that Explore Superheroes, Art and Environment, and the Allure of Crystal

Fahamu Pecou Nunna My Heroes: After Barkley Hendricks’ ‘Icon for My Man Superman’, 1969, 2011 Acrylic, gold leaf, and oil stick on canvas 63 x 49 ½ in.
Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University; Gift of Marjorie and Michael Levine

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art announces the 2019 temporary exhibition schedule which includes two Crystal Bridges-organized exhibitions Men of Steel, Women of Wonder and Crystal: Visible and Invisible, as well as Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment.

“Our 2019 exhibitions are taking familiar concepts such as superheroes, the environment, and crystals, and introducing them from new perspectives,” said Rod Bigelow, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Executive Director & Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer. “Each of these exhibitions offers visitors a chance to delve more deeply into subjects they know. We developed Men of Steel, Women of Wonder to show how artists respond to these popular personas, and Crystal: Visible and Invisible, to show how crystal has bridged the gap between things we can see and things we can’t. Lastly, the connection between art and nature is a part of Crystal Bridges’ mission, supporting the inclusion of Nature’s Nation, which shows how artists have helped shaped environmental understanding.”

Men of Steel, Women of Wonder
February 9 through April 22, 2019

 Superman and Wonder Woman are two of the most beloved icons in American pop culture. Created in times of economic adversity and world war, these characters quickly emerged as beacons of American morality, representing the ideals of truth, justice, and the American Way.

Men of Steel, Women of Wonder is a new exhibition developed by Crystal Bridges that examines art world responses to Superman and Wonder Woman ranging from their Depression-era origins to today’s contemporary artist interpretations. The exhibition features over 70 paintings, photographs, installations, videos, and more by a wide range of artists.

Offering fresh perspectives on these cultural icons and tapping into our current national love for superheroes, the artists in Men of Steel, Women of Wonder use Superman and Wonder Woman to explore national identity, American values, social politics, and the concept of humanity in an exciting, thought-provoking, unforgettable exhibition.

After its presentation at Crystal Bridges, Men of Steel, Women of Wonder will travel to additional venues, to be announced at a later date. The exhibition will be accompanied by a full-color catalog including essays by the exhibition curator and leading scholars.

Men of Steel, Women of Wonder is sponsored by Esther Silver-Parker.

Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment
May 25 through September 9, 2019

 Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment is a new exhibition that examines American artists’ impact on shaping environmental understanding and sustainability.

Featuring 100 artworks from 70 eminent US collections, Nature’s Nation traces 300 years of evolving ideas about the natural world and our place within it. From colonial beliefs about the divine in nature, to artist’s advocacy for national parks, to the emergence of environmental activism, the paintings, photographs, and installations by Thomas Moran, Frank Lloyd Wright, Dorothea Lange, and more explore our relationship with the environment.

Similar to the mission of Crystal Bridges, Nature’s Nation illuminates the connection between art and nature.

Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment has been organized by the Princeton University Art Museum. Leadership support has been provided by Shelly and Tony Malkin; Annette Merle-Smith; the Henry Luce Foundation; and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Nature’s Nation is organized by the Princeton University Art Museum, and will travel to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA before its final stop at Crystal Bridges.

Crystal: Visible and Invisible (working title)
October 12, 2019 through January 6, 2020

Today, high quality quartz crystals are mined from the mountains and caverns of Arkansas. Yet this iridescent, enigmatic material has captivated artists, religious leaders, monarchs, and healers across the world for more than 6,000 years.

Organized by Crystal Bridges with guest curator Joachim Pissarro, Crystal: Visible and Invisible is the first exhibition of its kind to explore the complex and varied connections between crystal and art throughout the world, spanning history and geography. View ancient artifacts such as engraved gems, skulls, figurines, vases, and more, alongside works from contemporary artists around the world that explore the power of crystal in art by drawing on its form, properties, and mysterious qualities. Featuring more than 75 works from Ancient Egypt and Greece, through to Rome, China, India, Japan, the Middle East, the Americas, and beyond, discover how the power of crystal transcends the boundaries of time and space.

Taken together, all of these precious objects illustrate how crystal has bridged the gap between things we can see and things we can’t: science and art, fact and faith, medicine and magic–the visible and the invisible.

After its presentation at Crystal Bridges, Crystal: Visible and Invisible will travel to additional venues, to be announced at a later date. The exhibition will be accompanied by a full-color catalog including essays by exhibition curators and leading scholars.

Crystal: Visible and Invisible is sponsored by Avant Mining, LLC, Kyle, Maury and Finn Peterson, and JT and Imelda Rose.

For a complete list of current exhibitions, visit here. For news updates, follow Crystal Bridges on the Blog, Facebook or Twitter.

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