The Art Museum at The University of Kentucky www.uky.edu/artmuseum
Monday, December 16, 2013
Terry B. Mobely (left) with Jim Albisetti
Please join me in congratulating Jim Albisetti.
Jim was awarded the Terry B. Mobley Development Service Award last Wednesday! It is presented each year to a UK professional, administrator, faculty or staff member who demonstrates extraordinary support for the development effort at the University and is a strong advocate for UK philanthropy.
Jim has been giving to the university for over 30 years including establishing several endowments across campus. Significant to the Museum, he established the Albisetti Exhibition Fund to acquire, transport, and/or provide funds for the installation of art exhibitions. Jim loves the Art Museum and you will see him at all of our events with several guests.
He’s a great example of life-long philanthropy. Congratulations Jim!
I’m Venda Ballard, a first year Art History graduate student at the University of Kentucky. I’m proud to be the new curatorial and education intern here at the Art Museum, working with the Curator, Janie Welker, and Deborah Borrowdale-Cox, Director of Education. I’m learning a lot about all of the different aspects of museum work, and gaining valuable experience that will help me as I move forward in my career.
One of the projects I have most enjoyed working on is my research about two very interesting female photographers. Doris Ulmann (1882 – 1934) and Mary Marvin Breckinridge Patterson (1905 – 2002) were both groundbreaking artists. Born to wealthy families, each woman ventured outside of the comforts of her social class to make great strides in photography. Doris Ulmann went from making society portraits to documenting the people of Appalachia with care and grace, while Mary Marvin Breckinridge Patterson became a CBS radio correspondent and photojournalist across Europe during World War II.
I’m excited to be able to contribute my research about these fascinating women to the upcoming exhibition Wide Angle: American Photographs, showcasing work from the Art Museum’s extensive collection.
My internship is supported by the Efroymson Family Fund.
I began interning with the Art Museum at Uk with the White Elephant Rummage Sale in July. It is now November and we are working hard towards making Art in Bloom 2014 a tremendous success. Over the past four months I have learned a great amount about versatility. From refreshing sponsorship letters to researching lesson plans, compiling support for a famous Kentucky artist and folding and mailing a never-ending amount of letters, I’ve learned to let myself be used in as many ways as possible. The staff at the Art Museum is remarkable, trusting me with a wide array of tasks and showing great patience when I become confused. Of course, the best part of all in working in an Art Museum is getting a sneak peak at exhibitions and then seeing those great works of art every day! I was not sure what to expect when I began this internship, but Amy (interim director, Amy Nelson) immediately put me to work updating donor lists and mailing materials. I come in, she gives me a task(s) and I get right to work. After four months, I cannot begin to count how many names and mailing addresses I’ve entered into Microsoft Excel. But, these are the tasks of someone working with non-profit development. You must develop and constantly nurture your donor base, keeping them updated and engaged with what your organization is doing. Art in Bloom is our largest fundraiser by far and it has a fantastic and beneficial mission. It will be such a reward to see a great turnout at the event in February and then run the numbers afterwards to see how much we will be able to donate to support art education in Kentucky schools! Before we pop the top on Art in Bloom, we have to do the hard work. Charles Calhoun
Guide Challenge—a partnership of Blue Grass
Community Foundation and Smiley Pete Publishing—is
an online charitable giving campaign which celebrates the diversity of 108
nonprofits in the Bluegrass Region by allowing people to learn about and
contribute to their important work. Donors
can make a donation to one or more charities using a credit card at the secure
website www.goodgivingguide.net. Donations made via the
GoodGiving Guide website will have an even greater impact thanks to hundreds of
thousands of dollars in challenges, match pools,
and grant money provided by sponsors.
The Art Museum
at UK is relying on this fabulous resource more than ever to drive our annual
fund campaign. Your donations help us:
• Purchase mats and frames for artwork, like
six Andy Warhol prints donated by The Warhol Foundation
• Provide art
supplies for educational and outreach events
• Pay for rental, shipping, and installation of special
valuable artwork in our permanent collection
• AND MUCH
Please help the
Art Museum continue to serve, not only the
University community, but all of Central
Kentucky. You can reach our donation page on the GoodGiving Guide website
you in advance for your support!
GoodGiving Guide Challenge runs from November 1 at 8:00 am and ends on
December 31 at 11:59 pm.
Congratulations to our very own Amy Nelson Young for receiving one of the 2013 University of Kentucky Outstanding Staff Awards presented by the UK Staff Senate.
Amy became Director of Grants and Assets for the Art Museum in 2002. In this position she coordinates the Museum's advisory board and oversees all aspects of the Museum’s fundraising including the annual fund, corporate sponsorships, federal and foundation grants, and special events. Amy has also served as the Museum's Interim Director since the resignation of Kathy Walsh-Piper this past August. She earned a BA from Brigham Young University, an MA in Art History from the University of North Texas, and is currently a PhD student at the University of Kentucky.
But,the Art Museum staff knows Amy for her cheerful, positive, will-do attitude. She is the beautiful smiling face you see at every Museum reception. Way to go Amy!!!
Behind the closed office doors of the Art Museum, many people contribute time, energy and hard work to develop programs and events that enliven art and give it a voice. Our Education program is currently working with two interns, students who wear many different hats. One of the interns who has been working with the education team this fall is Grace Wyatt, a German and Art History major from Transylvania University. Her projects have included writing teachers’ guides, researching works of art, helping plan and implement Artful Sundays, helping with tours and assisting in the less glamorous aspects of program management. She provides the Museum with extra hands and inspiration, while gaining insight into the museum world. Working with interns is essential to our educational mission. Their conversations inform us about the ideas and concerns of our college and university visitors, and we get to play a part in training the leaders of tomorrow’s museums. Grace’s favorite work of art, at least for today, is John Christen Johansen’s Portrait of a Woman. Next time you visit the Museum, see if you can find this beautiful painting.
October saw the passing of a great Kentucky artist and long-time University of Kentucky professor, Robert James Foose. The Museum was fortunate to host a retrospective of his work in 2002, which really brought to light his versatility as an artist. His oil paintings and watercolors are stylistically different. Many of his oil paintings are large abstractions of a familiar landscape, while his watercolors focus on line and the subtle changes in atmosphere. He was also known as a great innovator in the area of artist’s books. He influenced the lives of many through his art and teaching and leaves a great legacy for the University of Kentucky.
ROBERT JAMES FOOSE American, 1938-2013, Frenzy, 2001, oil and alkyd on canvas, gift of the artist
How many photos do you have on your phone, on Facebook, on Instagram? Our first featured artist for the 2013-2014 Robert C. May Photography Lecture series explores the sheer volume and anonymity of contemporary photography. Penelope Umbrico, examines the notion of how photography exists in the digital age, making prints of ephemeral electronic images, culling samples, and then building them into installations of multiple images that offer a revealing snapshot of who we are. Her work can be displayed on walls, on Flickr, or in other spaces for the viewer to discover including drawers. Photography today is constantly changing and Umbrico’s work explores its dichotomies including the tension between producer and consumer, the individual and collective, and the material and immaterial. Make sure to see her special installation in the Art Museum which opens this Friday, October 18. It will be on view through November 10. And don’t miss her lecture Friday, October 18, 2013 at 4 pm in the Worsham Theater of the UK Student Center. Both her lecture and admission to the exhibition are free.
PENELOPE UMBRICO, Screen Shot 2012-07-26 at 5.29.54 PM of 16 Screenshots of People Holding the Sun at Sunset, 2012, digital c-print. Courtesy of the artist, Mark Moore Gallery, LA, and LMAK projects, NYC
Museum staff and interns are busy this week installing the next exhibition INNOVATORS AND LEGENDS: Generations in Textiles and Fiber. In addition to interesting weavings and painting-like embroidery the crates have revealed amazing sculptures including cats made of wire and nylon and larger than life-size “sound suits” with hand-stitched sequins. It’s the variety that makes this exhibition exciting: representational and abstract styles, a range of media from the unusual (Tyvek and holographic film) to everyday (teacups and wire), and a palate from monochromatic to day-glo. Please join us for the exhibition opening, Sunday October 13 from 2 -4 pm in the Museum galleries. Image Credit: NICK CAVE, Soundsuit, mixed media
This week the Museum staff is saying goodbye to one of our favorite and most successful exhibitions. The Golden Age of Painting in Europe, which was loaned to us by Louisville’s Speed Art Museum, drew over 6000 visitors this summer. The reviews were spectacular; proving to us that Lexington has a vibrant and appreciative art audience. Thank you to all who supported this exhibition.
Most people probably have no idea how much physical labor is involved in installing and de-installing an exhibition of this size. The Museum staff has been reminded of that effort this past week. Each of these 72 masterpieces travels with its own custom designed crate. Before packing can begin each painting has to be inspected with a magnifying glass by both our registrar and the Speed’s registrar to determine whether any damage has occurred during exhibition. As you can see from this photograph, large paintings, like this portrait by Pierre Mignard, require a team of gloved handlers, led by our preparator, Alan Rideout (in the green shirt), and registrar, Bebe Lovejoy (in orange) to safely deliver it to its crate.
While I was photographing this delivery, I was impressed by the amount of calculation and discussion that went into how the crate had to be situated so that the bolts would fit around the frame and where workers would stand to insure that the transition would go smoothly. The entire operation took almost 30 minutes; one painting down and 71 to go. But it’s this kind of care and attention to detail that insures that this painting from 1688 will last another 325 years!
Global Contemporary: Art from Inner Mongolia, an exhibition of art work by the faculty of the Art College of Inner Mongolia University is on view now through October 6 at the Art Museum.
The exhibition is part of LIVING LANDSCAPES which is a collaborative festival of art, music, dance and theater with the University of Kentucky College of Fine Arts, the UK Confucius Institute, the Art College of Inner Mongolia University and the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region International Culture Association.
This week is particularly exciting as the Museum, along with the College of Fine Arts (CFA) and the UK Confucius Institute host a delegation from the Art College of Inner Mongolia University (IMU) and the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region International Culture Association. These groups hope that the festival will help all those who participate discover what makes us unique and what brings us together through an adventure of art and culture.
Please stop by the Museum to see these beautiful works of art and attend some of the other cultural events that Living Landscapes is offering.
Here are some of this weeks highlights:
all events are FREE
Wednesday, September 25, 11 am
(in the Art Museum) Journey Home a lecture by Dr. Juefel Wang, Freedom Foundation Program Director
Wednesday, September 25, 7:30 pm
(in the Singletary Center Concert Hall) Inner Mongolian Music and Dance with students from IMU featuring traditional Mongolian throat singing and horse head instruments.
Thursday, September 26, 7:30 pm
(in the Singletary Center Concert Hall) A Celebration of Music and Dance featuring students from IMU and CFA with jazz, percussion, and a variety of dance works.
Friday, September 27, 7:30 pm
(in the Singletary Center Concert Hall) UK Symphony Orchestra and Inner Mongolia University guest artists perform a collection of traditional Inner Mongolian and American music.
Working as a gallery attendant at an art museum, you come across people from all walks of life, each with their own stories, and each with their own opinions about the art. Some pass by a piece of art, glancing at it briefly, while others focus in on that same piece, stopped in their tracks, fascinated by the story it’s telling them. And every once in a while, a piece of art that may not always get that much attention suddenly becomes a major point of conversation among our visitors.
Such was the case this week at the Art Museum. The untitled piece by local artist Michael Goodlett created a spark of interest in many visitors since the small sculpture is hauntingly similar to the unforgettable images of 9/11. The surprise—this sculpture was created in 1999, a full two years before the attacks, a fact that most of our visitors are surprised by.
This brings up the age-old question: does art imitate life or life imitate art? To this debated question, I’m sure there will never be a definite answer. One thing is sure though—all art tells a story. It captures human essence, telling the story of those who have come before us and the ways of the world during their time. Life changes. People change. And although art may change, it is always there, a constant reminder of human history, giving brief glimpses into a story that’s not our own.
Nothing does this better than our current exhibition The Golden Age of Painting in Europe. I strongly encourage you to visit the Museum and see it before it leaves next Monday on September 23. Come take a peek at history! See and read their stories. Better yet, pick up a pen or paintbrush and create your own. After all, we might not be permanent fixtures in this world, but isn’t it awesome to think that people 400 years from now might be looking at something that you created?
Michaela Miles, gallery attendant and gift shop coordinator
Image credit: MICHAEL GOODLETT, Untitled, 1999, carved wood with ink and pencil Gift of Louis Zoeller Bickett II in honor of Jon Bales
The Golden Age of Painting in Europe has been a summer blockbuster attracting thousands of visitors to the Art Museum. There are only 12 days (closes on September 22) left to see this beautiful exhibition featuring some of the world’s most revered artist, including Rembrandt, Rubens, and Gainsborough. Many visitors, however, have enjoyed learning about lesser known European masters. One of the Museum staff’s favorite paintings is Dice Players by French artist Nicolas Tournier. This painting reflects several stylistic features Tournier borrowed from Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, the revolutionary Italian artist whose dramatic lighting and naturalistic painting style influenced seventeenth-century art throughout Europe. Caravaggio’s style can be seen in the extreme contrasts of light and shadow, the strong sense of naturalism (down to the dirty fingernails), and the way in which the artist engages the viewer by having the figure on the left look directly out into the viewer’s space. The subject of this painting also reflects Caravaggio’s influence. He, along with many of his followers, frequently depicted people from the seedy side of life, such as prostitutes, fortune tellers, and card and dice players.
NICHOLAS TOURNIER, French, 1590-about 1660, Dice Players, about 1619-1626/27, oil on canvas, 47 5/16 x 67 ½ in., Gift of the Charter Collectors, from the Speed Art Museum, Louisville, KY.
The Museum is located on the University Of Kentucky Campus, in the Singletary Center for the Arts at 405 Rose Street. We are open Tuesday through Sunday from noon until 5 pm and Fridays from noon until 8 pm, closed Mondays. General Admission to the Golden Age admission is $8, and $5 for senior citizens (over 55). All students and UK faculty, staff and alumni are free. Everyone is free on Friday nights from 5 until 8 pm. The last day for this exhibition is Sunday, September 22. For more information visit us online at www.uky.edu/ArtMuseum or phone 859.257.5716.
Rembrandt, Rubens, Gainsborough and the Golden Age of Painting in Europe was organized by the Speed Art Museum, Louisville. Presenting Sponsors are UK HealthCare and Norton Healthcare. Promotional Sponsors are Meridian-Chiles, Time-Warner Communications, Thoroughbred Printing, and WUKY.
Works of art from the Museum’s collection are always on the move. The Art Museum is happy to share collections, when possible, with other institutions on a variety of occasions. Typically, we loan single objects to be seen in special exhibitions that bring objects together from across the nation or world. Currently, the museum has made a special loan of Eugene Isabey’s painting “Fishing Village” to the Legion of Honor in San Francisco for an exhibition called “Impressionists on the Water.” The show explores the themes of boating and life on the ocean, which coincided with the America’s Cup races this past summer. In November, the exhibition will travel to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts (November 9 to February 17).
The Museum also has on loan, to the Evansville Museum in Evansville, Indiana, three tapestries by Kentucky fiber artist Dobree Adams. The exhibition, called “Enfolded: Dialogues of Vision and Voice in a Multi-Faceted Collaboration” presents the common arts interests of Adams and Jonathan Greene, who live on a Kentucky River farm north of Frankfort. Adams’s textiles and photographs and Greene’s poetry are all featured in the show which runs from September 22 through November 24.
DOBREE ADAMS, Big Black Mountain, from Ken-Tah-Teh series, 1994, hand-spun, hand-dyed, and hand woven wool with linen warp, gift of Hilary J. Boone, Jr.
LOUIS-GABRIEL-EUGÈNE ISABEY, Fishing Village, 1856, oil on canvas, transfer from the Carnahan Conference Center, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Henry H. Knight, 1958
Fall semester at the University of Kentucky is starting again! This is always an exciting time on campus and at the Art Museum. Some of the staff favorites are seeing the UK Marching Band practice around the building, move-in days, and meeting new interns. Friday, the Museum hosted the annual College of Fine Arts welcome back reception for faculty, staff and their families. It’s always fun to see friends who have been gone for the summer and talk about new projects for the fall. Students, please join us for K-week’s Art Day on Thursday, August 29 from 2-4 in the sculpture garden. Museum staff will have tours, treasure hunts and other fun activities with giveaways and prizes!
The staff at the Art Museum have lots of stories to tell. This blog will feature their stories now, as I am retiring this week!
When I was thinking of a museum career, back in the 1960's, I had no idea what an adventure my life would become. It took me seven years to get a job in an art museum! Meanwhile, I taught school and wrote articles to build my portfolio. My first museum job was at the St. Louis Art Museum. I was thrilled to know colleagues with whom I shared so many interests and values.
Six museums and many years later, I still think it is a great privilege to work in an art museum. There are conflicting values, and funding crises, and pressure and disappointments. But there are also challenges, opportunities, moments of wonder, the sense of success when you read the comment book, get a grant or see children get excited about learning.
Most of all, I have loved the chance to be around works of art every day, to walk through the galleries and feel a sense of being at home.
Our banner was installed Friday just in time for the big opening. We had a concert with the Lexington Philharmonic, tied to the paintings in the Exhibition, then a reception. It was a great success, thanks to our creative and hard-working staff and all our supporters, including Wells Fargo! Here's the installation shot!
Once the artworks are all hung,and the labels in place, the next task is lighting. Lighting can dramatically change the piece , bringing it to life. The preparator is using a lift to reach our track lights, while the registrar check the light meter in
Sarah Velasquez, our intern from Vanderbilt, shares her insights on museum work:
have progressed through my internship during these past six weeks, the amount
of inside information I’ve been able to take in has been tremendous. When I was
asked to write about what knowledge I
have garnered about incoming exhibitions themselves, with the arrival and
on-going installation of The Golden Age, one word came forefront above all
others—adaption. Museums follow the laws of science to the extent that the fittest
survive; the ones which adapt and evolve to a shifting and unstable environment
are those who will be victorious. Working with what you already have for a
small museum is a quintessential characteristic, and it is a concept which I
saw heavily utilized here at The Art Museum. The genius use of space to
accompany all 43 of the incoming crates is a magnificent achievement that left
many people walking through to stop and stand in the new organized space with
an expression of bewilderment, just like a child walking through the gates of
Disney World for their very first time.
installation itself has also been an educational experience. Although I have
only been able to observe for a short while, it does not take long to see the
precision that accompanies these installations. The carefulness and accuracy
that is used in handling these historic paintings is clearly evident, leading
to a steady tension throughout the room. However, I do think this tension
itself a good thing, since it truly shows the understanding and passion everyone
has for these artworks. And that was something to be learned on its own.
In order to make room for all the crates we are expecting for the old Masters' show, we had to move our shop inventory, our docent teaching area, and office, art suppplies and lots of other things. Look at he progress we've made!
For the upcoming show, we are painting the galleries, as museums do in between each exhibition. All the nail holes have to be patched, colors chosen, pylons (movable walls) painted and border put on he pylons. The rich deep red on these pylons took several coats. Notice the baseboard on has been put on one of them.
I asked our preparator if there were ever "too many nail holes and patches " in the walls. he said, Definitely. Our walls are cinder block with plaster over them. It's hard to keep patching and painting and keep the walls stable and looking nice.
staff met to honor docents for their service to the museum. Here Deborah Borrowdale-Cox and Jane Shropshire present certificates for 390 years of teaching and touring to Anne Tauchert and Becky Faulconer. What an amazing gift they have given to the community!
Also honored for ten years of service was Saundra Lykins, and for five years, Jane Cutter, Kate Savage and Jane Shropshire, who is our Chairperson of the Docent Council this year.
The group was very festive, sharing stories of
their tours. The dessert was especially cute with butterfly cookies!
With a major exhibition coming in, we are expecting 43 crates. We have to make room! That means moving a office that we carved out of our back area. Our Educaiton Intern, Sarah Velaquez, is busy moving the teacher outreach office from this
to this. Sarah is here for the summer. She is a student from Vanderbilt. She is working on several project, but took a break to help out. We have another intern, Sam Humphrey who is an intern working with our preparator, Alan. they are stacking vitrines and taking items to storage to make room for the crates.
The Art Museum hosted "sculpture day' for the SmART Sparks Art Club, sponsored by the Sisohprometem Art foundation, Inc. Students toured sculpture both inside the museum and in the sculpture garden, had a nice lunch and then spent the afternoon creating their own sculptures.
The mission of the Foundation is to help youth to develop into confident, creative engaged citizens through participation in
Our Education Department worked with students to create a living work of art at William Wells Brown Community Center. It's not finished, because Mother Nature has to finish it herself! Under Direction of Sonja Brooks, Artist/teacher Luke Eldridge worked with the students to create the sculpture of Mother Nature, which will be completed when the clematis they have planted grows up the armature. Plants and advice were provided by John Michler gardens. the project was funded by an EcoArts grant from LFUCG.
Our kind donors are bringing treasures to our White Elephant
Sale. Look at this lovely mantel clock that was just donated! Come on July 20 for your chance to purchase this, and other treasures, for the benefit of the Art Museum !
A "white elephant" refers to something of value that is no longer needed or is too much to take care of. For a historical account of the origin of the term, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_elephant.
Our exhibition, Art and the Animal has been packed in crates, and the crates loaded into an art shipping truck for transport to the next venue. Here's how it looked from the museum dock as they loaded the huge
CURVES FROM MATH, WAVES IN GLASS Origami and Glass
Works by Martin and Erik Demaine EXHIBITION: April 21 - May 26, 2013,
FREE Our preparator Alan and our intern Alisa are putting the finishing touches on this fascinating show that opens Sunday.
An exhibition Martin and Eric Demaine, father and son artists from MIT, this show demonstrates how math can inform the art of origami. This is a partnership with the Uk Math Department, and Sylvia Serel-Cuhl.
They have just put on the vitrines (plexiglass covers that protect the art) and are cleaning them.