What to See Now

By: Julie VanDolen • Jun 30, 2010 • 0 Comments

CHICAGO, IL. In the 1950s, the photographers John Szarkowski, Aaron Siskind, and Richard Nickel embarked on in-depth photographic explorations of structures designed by the renowned architect Louis Sullivan, whose commercial buildings and theaters of the 1880s and early 1890s broke with historical precedents, displaying a radical, organic fusion of formal and functional elements. Attracted to Sullivan’s renegade American spirit and uncompromising values, Szarkowski, Siskind, and Nickel also found inspiration in the play of light over his ornamented facades and the dynamism of his buildings within the bustling city of Chicago. The interest of these photographers came at a critical moment, when many of Sullivan’s most important structures were being threatened with demolition in the service of urban renewal; their photographs illustrated the fragile existence of his architecture and provided new impetus for its preservation.

Looking after Louis Sullivan explores how these photographers employed the camera to document and interpret Sullivan’s architecture and, in the process, helped shape his legacy. The exhibition is drawn from the permanent collections of the Department of Photography and the Department of Architecture and Design at the Art Institute of Chicago, and is planned in concert with a major exhibition of Sullivan’s work at the Chicago Cultural Center.  Catch this one before December 12, 2010.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN. The similarity of prints and drawings suggests a close and often complex relationship between these two branches of the graphic arts that date to the 15th century. The earliest engravings were line drawings transferred to the printing plate for reproduction. Later, many artists continued to work out their compositions as drawings before committing them to the permanence of the printed line. Noted artists provided professional printmakers with drawings or watercolors as models to be followed; other draftsmen found inspiration in printed images. In the 20th century, original prints were apt to be extensions of the painter-printmakers' personal drawing styles. This 400-year alliance between unique and multiple works on paper is explored through 30 drawings from the IMA's permanent collection and 30 engravings, etchings, woodcuts and lithographs, which relate to them.  Now through January 2011.

VANCOUVER, BC.  Just for fun!  The story behind the shoes.  Meet John Fluevog, Peter Fox and Ken Rice: friends, collaborators, trend-spotters, businessmen, and artists. This fashion retrospective explores the story behind their footwear companies, from their early days making the scene in 1970s Gastown to acclaim and powerful brand loyalty on an international scale.

Approximately 150 shoes dating from 1968 to 2000 are featured, complemented by photographs, catalogues, newspaper articles, sketches and customer comments.  On view through September 26,2010.

CLEVELAND, OH.  Worth the wait...
 After a five-year hiatus, the Cleveland Museum of Art’s (CMA) collections from the ancient Near East, Greece, Rome, Egypt and Africa, as well as works from Late Antiquity, the Byzantine Empire and the European Middle Ages, will return to public view on June 26. The new presentation will trace the evolution of the visual and cultural traditions at the roots of Western civilization and foster an understanding of the ritual, social and historical contexts within which these works of art were produced. At the same time, visitors will be encouraged to explore connections to art from other periods on view throughout the museum.

The works will be showcased in 17 newly renovated galleries, which also include dedicated spaces for the museum’s holdings of prints and drawings, in the first level of the museum’s original Beaux-Arts building, designed by Hubbell and Benes. Their unveiling will mark the next milestone in a multi-phase renovation and expansion, scheduled for completion in 2013. The project is designed by architect Rafael Viñoly and will add 200,000 square feet to the museum. Last summer, the museum celebrated the opening of the first of three new wings, a structure that unites the original building with a 1971 expansion by Marcel Breuer.  Stay tuned for news on the progress in Cleveland.