Akron Art Museum: Intersections, Our Land, and more
Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space
Karl and Bertl Arnstein and Judith Bear Isroff Galleries
October 1, 2016 – January 15, 2017
Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space showcases recent work by six sculptors for whom working in two dimensions is also an essential part of their practice. Each of the artists’ works in two- and three dimensions relate in different ways, although all are distinguished by their mastery of both line and form.
Mark Fox transforms paintings and drawings into sculpture. The artist crumples paper covered with private writings or repeated texts—many drawn from Catholic doctrine—and sandwiches them between sheets of cardboard. These colorful, corrugated materials are then cut into sections and assembled into sculptures that simultaneously invite reflection and deny access.
Anne Lindberg, who uses taut cotton thread to draw lines that create a shimmering mass in space, will create an installation created in response to the museum’s galleries. Extending ideas the artist began exploring in drawings on mat board, scribing thousands of parallel lines using an architect’s bar, her installations are “built with color and air, filament by filament, through space.” Three drawings conceived in tandem with inside green enclose the space, contributing to its physiological and emotional resonance on the spectator.
Nathalie Miebach creates drawings in the form of musical scores from data generated by weather events. These in turn inform colorful sculptures the artist weaves from wood, reed and yarn. Miebach prizes weaving for providing a grid to translate phenomena that occur in three dimensions, and she values how her materials offer new ways of picturing data.
John Newman makes drawings before, during and after his sculptures, many of them to understand how to realize new ideas. Noted for his eccentric combinations of natural, manufactured, computer-generated and hand-crafted elements, Newman likewise uses a variety of materials and techniques in his works on paper.
Judy Pfaff, who will construct an installation in the museum galleries, is a recognized pioneer of installation art. Aptly described as “a collagist in space,” Pfaff embraces a variety of materials and readily marries two and three-dimensional elements in work distinguished by its dynamism and complexity.
Ursula von Rydingsvard uses graphite, a traditional drawing material, to mark the cuts for and to emphasize the surfaces of her sculptures in wood. In describing her preference for cedar as her material, von Rydingsvard comments on its lack of visible grain, how it is “neutral; it’s like a piece of paper.” The artist adds dimension to her works in paper, pressing abaca pulp into cedar to leech out its color and embedding knotted silk threads into wet linen pulp.
Works by each of these artists will be on display in dedicated gallery spaces, inviting understanding of their processes and the diversity of ways they work across media.
Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space is organized by the Akron Art Museum and made possible by generous donations from the Lehner Family Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts and the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation.
Fred and Laura Ruth Bidwell Gallery
August 6, 2016 – February 12, 2017
On August 25, 1916 the United States Congress founded the National Park Service (NPS), established to conserve natural scenery “unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.” In celebration of this anniversary, the Akron Art Museum presents photographs of land under the agency’s stewardship.
The works on display in Our Land span 150 years, reflecting the ways photographers’ ideas and tools have evolved as well as Americans’ shifting attitudes toward parkland. The earliest photograph, Carleton Watkins’ Down Yosemite Valley, Showing River and Cathedral Rock, dates from the year after President Abraham Lincoln signed a law setting aside the land that would one-day become Yosemite National Park. Watkins’ pictures of Yosemite’s pristine glacier-carved peaks and conifer-lined valleys helped convince lawmakers to protect the region. Just over 150 years later, Ricky Rhodes photographed Crater Lake National Park, capturing signs of the tourism the park service depends upon and its sometimes uneasy coexistence with the natural world. The 412 sites managed by the NPS collectively draw more than 307 million visitors a year.
The park service system includes monuments and historic sites key to our shared national identity, such as the National Mall, the Manzanar War Relocation Center and the Conical Mounds, represented in Our Land through photographs by Wendy Watriss, Masumi Hayashi and Marilyn Bridges.
With photography, each artist in Our Land aids the NPS in its mission to conserve natural scenery and historical sites for the enjoyment of future generations, depicting our land in their own time and through their own unique vision.
Our Land is organized by the Akron Art Museum.
Jimmy Kuehnle: Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle
The Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation Gallery
August 25, 2016 – February 19, 2017
Jimmy Kuehnle’s sculptures, created from vinyl-coated polyester fabric, inflate and deflate, breathing like an organism, sometimes even pulsating with light. “When I work on projects, I always like to learn things and have new experiences. So I set up challenges, situations that require new techniques,” says Kuehnle, who will create a new site specific piece that will take over the Akron Art Museum’s Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation Gallery and extend out into Beatrice Knapp McDowell Grand Lobby, inviting visitors to engage with it. The bright red piece, titled Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle will engulf the gallery, creating a maze that can be explored and even touched.
Humor and a sense of play are key components of Kuehnle’s work, which he creates to react specifically to the spaces they inhabit. Many of his sculptures activate and even gently mock architectural space by cramming bright, flexible shapes of inflated fabric into every nook and cranny. Other works spill out organically from rooms and galleries that are created with right angles and rigid geometry.
Kuehnle who teaches at the Cleveland Institute of Art, has had solo shows at museums, galleries and universities in the United States and internationally. He recently had a solo exhibition at the Hudson River Museum in New York. In 2014 he was selected for the national survey exhibition State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. As a Fulbright Graduate Research Fellow in Japan, 2008, he pursued his interest in public art and sculpture.
Jimmy Kuehnle: Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle is organized by the Akron Art Museum and supported by a generous gift from The Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation. Additional support provided by Brouse McDowell, LPA.
Akron Art Museum
One South High Street
Akron, Ohio 44308
Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space: Karl and Bertl Arnstein and Judith Bear Isroff Galleries, October 1, 2016 – January 15, 2017
Our Land: Fred and Laura Ruth Bidwell Gallery, August 6, 2016 – February 12, 2017
Jimmy Kuehnle: Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle: The Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation Gallery, August 25, 2016 – February 19, 2017