Barnaby Furnas (American, born 1973) explores historical and biblical themes in his large-scale canvases, which are often described as colorful and expressionistic. The parting of the Red Sea, the Crucifixion, the hanging of the American abolitionist John Brown, and the American Civil War, for example, are depicted by Furnas in dramatic scenes that combine figuration with abstraction. To create his works, the artist places his canvases on the floor and allows pigment to pool and run, forming abstract shapes.
Pretty Baby, organized by Curator Andrea Karnes and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, explores various notions of childhood identity in contemporary art. International in scope, the exhibition features approximately sixty works by thirteen artists in various media, including painting, photography, sound, installation, and video.
FOCUS: Ralf Ziervogel marks the young German artist’s first solo museum exhibition. Since 2003, Ziervogel has developed a stream-of-consciousness method for creating large-scale, lush panoramic drawings that explore the effects of consumer gratification. In his imagined worlds, societal chaos is constructed on themes of obsessive sex and violence.
The Japanese artist Chinatsu Ban creates imaginative narratives using a recurring cast of figures, primarily little girls and elephants, and objects, such as apples and ice cream, in her drawings and large-scale acrylic paintings, which initially suggest the whimsy of children’s book illustrations. Since the artist’s childhood, the elephant, which is now her central motif, has been a source of comfort.
The British painter Nigel Cooke combines realism with abstraction in canvases that seem to represent scenes of urban decay. In Cooke’s atmospheric works—some of which measure more than twelve feet in length—foregrounds populated by detailed depictions of debris are juxtaposed with airy, nearly abstract backgrounds that evoke crumbling concrete walls tinged with graffiti. The Modern’s FOCUS exhibition features seven works by Cooke, including one newly completed canvas making its debut.
Hiroshi Sugimoto: End of Time is the first major retrospective of one of Japan's most important contemporary artists, Hiroshi Sugimoto. This exhibition represents the first chance to survey Sugimoto's work in significant volume, including his series Dioramas, Seascapes, Theatres, Portraits, Architecture, Sea of Buddha, and Conceptual Forms. In addition, there will be a chance to see Colors of Shadow, a new series of color photographs of the artist's studio, which he designed himself.
Like many contemporary Japanese painters, Hiroshi Sugito (born in 1970) was trained in the traditional Japanese painting style known as Nihonga (Nihon means “Japan” and ga means “painting”). The Nihonga technique utilizes ground pigments made of natural materials such as minerals, shells, and coral applied to handmade paper. Sugito achieves a visual similarity to this technique in his paintings by using layers of acrylic paint. In his works he also refers to the formal spatial arrangements of Nihonga, and he further refers to Japanese traditio
For more than thirty years, Chuck Close has explored the art of printmaking in his continuing investigation into the principles of perception. This exhibition is the first comprehensive survey of Close's involvement and accomplishment with the varied forms and processes of printmaking. Featuring approximately one hundred works dated from 1972 to 2002, Chuck Close Prints illustrates the artist's range of invention in etching, aquatint, lithography, handmade paper, direct gravure, silkscreen, traditional Japanese woodcut, and reduction linocut.
The three bodies of work represented in FOCUS: Adam Fuss include images of water droplets, butterfly chrysalises, and children, and each of these series was produced with a different photographic technique. The water droplet images are photograms, a cameraless process invented at photography’s inception in which light and chemicals produce a unique image on photo-sensitive materials. The pictures of children are gelatin silver prints, a standard twentieth-century darkroom method; and the chrysalises are pigment prints, a present-day process.