For the sheer fun of it, nothing beats the theme of animals in art. This rip-roaring show assembles a circus parade of the wild and the woolly, from the big cats (lions, tigers, leopards and others) to the sheep and bunnies beloved by all (including the cats). The roll call of major talents represented in the show whose paintings, drawings, and sculpture have immortalized the wild kingdom includes many of the top dogs in art history, including Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall, John James Audubon and Jeff Koons among many others (there are over a hundred works on view). As a special treat, a lavishly colorful installation by the world-renowned artist and designer Hunt Slonem will transform the elegant rooms of the mansion into a dream-like sanctuary for parrots, rabbits and butterflies, his signature motifs. This show within a show, titled Eden Never Ends, includes not just a dazzling array of paintings but an unforgettable installation of fabrics and extravagant furniture designed by Hunt Slonem, created expressly for this show. It is an Instagram opportunity not to be missed!
On a crisp autumn night, nearly a hundred art lovers, including several local artists as well as Museum trustees, members and teachers gathered to celebrate the unveiling of new sculpture, the publication of the new museum guide including a map of the sculpture, and the opening of a vibrant new show, the third in the series called Master Class (early ones had celebrated Josef Albers and Hans Hofmann).
Among the fine teachers of color in our time in the show are local heroes Stan Brodsky, Frank Olt and Jessica Cannon. From gouache to enamel, oil, printer’s inks, encaustic and acrylic, the exhibition brandishes a spectrum of media. Sol LeWitt’s exquisitely braided exploration in gouache of the interaction of color is straight out of Albers. By contrast, James Rosenquist is prepared to sacrifice what he rejected as the “purity” of color for the “clarity” of what he called “painting below zero.” Charlie Clough (who is out to “break color”) has a hot hand, more closely related to Hofmann than the cool eye of Albers. The elusive consensus on color is sometimes attributed to cultural differences, but consider Cao Jun, who is aware that his palette is far from Chinese traditional grisaille. He was at the opening, and returned to the museum with Steven Rockefeller, who collects his work.
The grounds of the Nassau County Museum will never be the same after the installation of Marko Remec’s monumental and thrilling new works, commissioned for the Museum and sited by the artist himself: Field Totem and Tall Totem. Along the sinuous drive, rising and falling with the gentle contours of a pair of hills, the elegant Field Totem stretches like a diamond tennis bracelet over the landscape. The entrance of the main building receives a fanfare in brilliant mirrors soaring twenty-six feet into the sky with Tall Totem.
Remec is an internationally renowned figure in contemporary art whose recent triumphs with similar site-specific works have included immensely popular works at Mass MOCA and the Long House Reserve. A former investment banker turned sculptor, Remec is a graduate of Williams College. This is the first phase of a major program of new works planned for the grounds of the Museum, long renowned as one of the region’s most important collections of outdoor sculpture.
Share the passion for art with philanthropist and author Dr. Harvey Manes, whose personal collection includes masterworks from the Renaissance through cutting-edge contemporary. Highlights from this world-class private cache of art will be on view at the Manes Center. Join us for an opening reception on January 25, when we celebrate the launch for Dr. Manes's new book, Collecting Art for Pleasure and Profit.
An age of excess not just in art but fashion, music and society, the Eighties is now recognized as a decade of wildly creative and lasting originality. Internationally renowned painter Eric Fischl, one of the heroes of the epoch, is the guest curator for this multi-media extravaganza, which revisits the East Village scene where he and Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Julian Schnabel, Cindy Sherman, April Gornik, Kenny Scharf, Robert Mapplethorpe, Andres Serrano, and Robert Longo were among the superstars. Fischl's brilliant keynote for the show: "When I think about the 80s I think about the energy, the confusion, the passions and the fault lines. At that time, no one knew who was going to last, who was better, everything was just pushing everything else."