FROM POP ART PRINTS TO AN­CES­TRAL MOD­ERN

Au­dain Art Mu­seum Spe­cial Ex­hi­bi­tions

Whistler Traveller Magazine - - CONTENT - STORY BY RE­BECCA WOOD BAR­RETT

This sum­mer the Au­dain Art Mu­seum presents Pop Art Prints, a spe­cial ex­hi­bi­tion fea­tur­ing the bold images and pure fun of the Pop art move­ment, June 30 to Sept. 17. The ex­hi­bi­tion will show­case 37 works from the Smith­so­nian Amer­i­can Art Mu­seum in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. by some of the leading artists who de­fined Pop art, from Jim Dine to James Rosen­quist and most fa­mously, Andy Warhol. The art­works are in­stantly rec­og­niz­able in their de­pic­tions of uni­ver­sally iden­ti­fi­able mass con­sumer items and pop­u­lar icons, such as Campbell’s soup cans and Mar­i­lyn Mon­roe. “When the Pop art move­ment was re­ally de­vel­op­ing, pri­mar­ily out of New York, the in­tent was to make art ac­ces­si­ble to the masses,” says Dar­rin Martens, the Gail and Stephen A. Jaris­lowsky chief cu­ra­tor of the Au­dain, “and the op­por­tu­nity par­tic­u­larly that Andy Warhol found with the silk screen­ing process was that he could mass pro­duce work that could be eas­ily dis­sem­i­nated to ev­ery­one.” In the 1950s and ’60s the Pop art move­ment chal­lenged the paradigm of the art world, specif­i­cally the emo­tional in­ten­sity of ab­stract ex­pres­sion­ism. Pop art cel­e­brated com­mon­place and com­mer­cial ob­jects, stray­ing far from pre­vi­ously hailed “high art” themes of clas­si­cal his­tory, mythol­ogy and moral­ity. In ad­di­tion to the pri­mary ex­hi­bi­tion, the Au­dain cu­ra­to­rial team is col­lect­ing works that re­veal Pop art’s in­flu­ence on Cana­dian and In­dige­nous artists, from the 1970s to present day. “Canada Goes POP! com­ple­ments the Amer­i­can works in the Smith­so­nian col­lec­tion,” says Dr. Cur­tis Collins, direc­tor and chief cu­ra­tor of the Au­dain Art Mu­seum, “fea­tur­ing some of this coun­try’s most sig­nif­i­cant con­tem­po­rary artists.“

When the Pop art move­ment was re­ally de­vel­op­ing, pri­mar­ily out of New York, the in­tent was to make art ac­ces­si­ble to the masses.”

“Tak­ing cues from the cen­tral tenets of Pop art,” Collins adds, “these artists have har­nessed the move­ment’s di­rect lan­guage in a sub­ver­sive way, of­ten as a 21st cen­tury so­cial cri­tique.” Among the Cana­dian artists rep­re­sented are Paul Wong, Sonny Assu, Gen­eral Idea, N.E. Thing & Co. and Shawn Hunt. Ac­com­pa­ny­ing the Amer­i­can and Cana­dian works is the mu­seum’s first-ever im­mer­sive space. “En­cour­ag­ing our vis­i­tors to en­gage with art in new and stim­u­lat­ing ways is a man­date of the Au­dain Art Mu­seum,” Collins says. “For this par­tic­u­lar ex­hi­bi­tion, we have taken in­spi­ra­tion from Warhol’s con­cept of 15 min­utes of fame. Vis­i­tors step into a space sur­rounded by Pop images, be­come fully en­grossed in an al­tered en­vi­ron­ment and snap a selfie to cu­rate their own mo­ment of fame on so­cial me­dia.”

From Oct. 6, 2018 to Jan. 7, 2019, the Au­dain Art Mu­seum hosts a spe­cial ex­hi­bi­tion An­ces­tral Mod­ern: Aus­tralian Abo­rig­i­nal Art from the Ka­plan & Levi Col­lec­tion, or­ga­nized by the Amer­i­can Fed­er­a­tion of Arts. The ex­hi­bi­tion presents spec­tac­u­lar works of con­tem­po­rary art by In­dige­nous Aus­tralian and Tor­res Strait Is­lands artists. Ground-break­ing, fea­tured artists Rover Thomas and Emily Kam Kng­war­ray adapted tra­di­tional Abo­rig­i­nal styles and ma­te­ri­als used in body paint­ing and ground paint­ing to the can­vas. Part of the Au­dain’s man­date is to bring art from around the world to Whistler to ex­pose vis­i­tors and mem­bers to dif­fer­ent art forms and tech­niques. “There are a lot of these dif­fer­ent paint­ings that are done on bark and work­ing with nat­u­ral pig­ments and there is a heavy em­pha­sis on de­sign and pat­tern which we don’t al­ways see in con­tem­po­rary In­dige­nous West Coast art,” Martens notes. “I think that what our view­ers will re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate is the fact that they are very much dif­fer­ent vis­ual con­cep­tions of the land and an­i­mals that are spe­cific to Aus­tralia,” says Dr. Cur­tis Collins, in­com­ing direc­tor and cu­ra­tor of the Au­dain. The Western tra­di­tion of de­pict­ing land­scapes uses tech­niques of hori­zon lines and three-di­men­sional per­spec­tives is very dif­fer­ent from the rep­re­sen­ta­tions of the vast desert land­scapes of Aus­tralia. Kng­war­ray’s work dis­plays images of in­ter­con­nect­ing lay­ers of lines and dots that de­pict the land­scape with a spir­i­tual eye.

I think that what our view­ers will re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate is the fact that they are very much dif­fer­ent vis­ual con­cep­tions of the land and an­i­mals that are spe­cific to Aus­tralia.”

Vis­i­tors are en­cour­aged to ex­plore the art mu­seum’s per­ma­nent col­lec­tion, which in­cludes art­works of coastal Bri­tish Columbia span­ning pre-Euro­pean con­tact to the con­tem­po­rary, with more than 24 Emily Carr paint­ings, and art­works from 12 dif­fer­ent First Na­tions groups, from the Lower Mainland to Alaska. “I think it’ll be an in­ter­est­ing jux­ta­po­si­tion to have the Abo­rig­i­nal art from Aus­tralia in the same build­ing as the First Na­tions art, both his­tor­i­cal and con­tem­po­rary, from B.C. and the West Coast,” says Jus­tine Ni­chol, mar­ket­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tions man­ager. An­ces­tral Mod­ern has been on tour through­out the United States for sev­eral years, and the Au­dain Art Mu­seum will be the only Cana­dian venue for the ex­hi­bi­tion be­fore it re­turns to the Seat­tle Art Mu­seum, where it per­ma­nently re­sides. For more in­for­ma­tion on the Au­dain Art Mu­seum, spe­cial ex­hi­bi­tions and events, visit au­dainart­mu­seum.com.

ROBERT IN­DI­ANA LOVE, 1967 The Fig­ure 5, from the port­fo­lio Decade, 1971 © 2018 Mor­gan Art Foun­da­tion Ltd / Artists Rights So­ci­ety (ARS), NY

SONNY ASSUCOKE-SAL­ISH, 2006 WOOD, PLAS­TIC, GLASS, METAL 55.8 CM X 96.6 CM X 17.7 CM (22 X 38.25 X 7 IN.) 2674/1 Im­age cour­tesy of the Mu­seum of An­thro­pol­ogy at the Uni­ver­sity of Bri­tish Columbia and the artist.

SHAWN HUNTTRICK­STER, 2009 ACRYLIC ON CAN­VAS 228.6 CM X 152.4 CM X 10.2 CM (90 X 60 X 4 IN.) Cour­tesy of Michael and Inna O’Brian Im­age cour­tesy of the artist

DUNDIWUY WANAMBI WUYAL WITH DHULAKU THE EURO, 1991 NAT­U­RAL PIG­MENTS ON WOOD 64 9/16 X 9 1/16 X 7 3/16 IN. Promised gift of Mar­garet Levi and Robert Ka­plan to the Seat­tle Art Mu­seum © Dundiwuy Wanambi Cour­tesy Amer­i­can Fed­er­a­tion of Arts

Edi­tion of 8 Photo Credit: Chris Meier. Im­age cour­tesy of the Artist and the Equinox Gallery Edi­tion 2/8, Pri­vate col­lec­tion SONNY ASSU — BREAK­FAST SERIES, 2006 DIG­I­TAL PRINTS, FOAM-CORE - 12 X 7 X 3 IN. EACH

Four sin­gle edi­tion in Red, Yel­low, Blue and Black. Cour­tesy of the artist. PAUL WONG — COVER, 2011 SCREENPRINT - 91.4 CM X 132.1 CM EACH (36 X 52 IN.)

CLAES OLDENBURG FLY­ING PIZZA, from the port­fo­lio New York Ten, 1964 COLOR LITHO­GRAPH ON PA­PER Smith­so­nian Amer­i­can Art Mu­seum, Mu­seum pur­chase. © 1964 Claes Oldenburg

TOMMY MITCHELL WALU, 2008 SYN­THETIC POLY­MER PAINT ON CAN­VAS 40 X 60 IN. Promised gift of Mar­garet Levi and Robert Ka­plan to the Seat­tle Art Mu­seum © Tommy Mitchell Cour­tesy Amer­i­can Fed­er­a­tion of Arts

DUNDIWUY WANAMBI WUYAL WITH DHULAKU THE EURO, 1991 (De­tails)

ROVER THOMASHOME COUN­TRY, 1984 NAT­U­RAL PIG­MENTS ON CAN­VAS 53 X 68 IN. Promised gift of Mar­garet Levi and Robert Ka­plan to the Seat­tle Art Mu­seum © Artist’s Es­tate, cour­tesy War­mun Art Cen­tre Cour­tesy Amer­i­can Fed­er­a­tion of Arts

SPINIFEX MEN’S COL­LAB­O­RA­TIVEWATI KUTJARRA (TWO MEN STORY), 2003 SYN­THETIC POLY­MER PAINT ON CAN­VAS 82 11/16 X 74 13/16 IN. Promised gift of Mar­garet Levi and Robert Ka­plan, in honor of the 75th An­niver­sary of the Seat­tle Art Mu­seum © Spinifex Men’s Col­lab­o­ra­tive - Photo by Su­san Cole Cour­tesy Amer­i­can Fed­er­a­tion of Arts

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