Sunday, April 30, 2017

Making Space: Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction

Alma Woodsey Thomas, Untitled, circa 1968

I was alerted to this MOMA exhibition by an article in The New Yorker (April 24, 2017 issue). A good reason to plan a trip to NYC? The show continues until August 13 and, as an added bonus, MOMA's Rauschenberg show runs May 21 - September 17.

MOMA's website gives this description:

"Making Space shines a spotlight on the stunning achievements of women artists between the end of World War II (1945) and the start of the Feminist movement (around 1968). In the postwar era, societal shifts made it possible for larger numbers of women to work professionally as artists, yet their work was often dismissed in the male dominated art world, and few support networks existed for them. Abstraction dominated artistic practice during these years, as many artists working in the aftermath of World War II sought an international language that might transcend national and regional narratives—and for women artists, additionally, those relating to gender.  
"Drawn entirely from the Museum’s collection, the exhibition features nearly 100 paintings, sculptures, photographs, drawings, prints, textiles, and ceramics by more than 50 artists. Within a trajectory that is at once loosely chronological and synchronous, it includes works that range from the boldly gestural canvases of Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler, and Joan Mitchell; the radical geometries by Lygia Clark, Lygia Pape, and Gego; and the reductive abstractions of Agnes Martin, Anne Truitt, and Jo Baer; to the fiber weavings of Magdalena Abakanowicz, Sheila Hicks, and Lenore Tawney; and the process-oriented sculptures of Lee Bontecou, Louise Bourgeois, and Eva Hesse. The exhibition will also feature many little-known treasures such as collages by Anne Ryan, photographs by Gertrudes Altschul, and recent acquisitions on view for the first time at MoMA by Ruth Asawa, Carol Rama, and Alma Woodsey Thomas."
Also on the website is a 38-minute video of the two curators being interviewed in front of a live audience. One of the topics touched upon is the "reclaiming of craft" as art in the 1960's and 70's.

You can learn more about the exhibit here.

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