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Past Exhibitions

Frontiers of Impressionism: Paintings from the Worcester Art Museum

On view September 28, 2023 through January 7, 2024

Claude Monet (French, 1840-1926), "Waterlilies", 1908. Oil on canvas, 37 3/8 x 35 3/8 inches. Worcester Art Museum Purchase 1910.26. Image courtesy of the Worcester Art Museum.
Claude Monet (French, 1840-1926), Waterlilies, 1908. Oil on canvas, 37 3/8 x 35 3/8 inches. Worcester Art Museum Purchase 1910.26. Image courtesy of the Worcester Art Museum.

Frontiers of Impressionism: Paintings from the Worcester Art Museum includes 53 works by over 30 artists—including Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Mary Cassatt, Childe Hassam, and Max Slevogt. Together, they demonstrate Impressionism’s international allure and its national adaptations captured in subjects from Monet’s famed Giverny lily pond to the natural wonders of the Grand Canyon.

In 2024, the term “impressionism” celebrates its 150th anniversary. Such a significant occasion inspires reflection on the profound impact that a relatively small group of artists in Paris made by positing a new mode of painting: one that favored painting outdoors over in a studio, immediacy over planning, the everyday over the grand, and the fleeting over the eternal. In doing so, the impressionists upended centuries of traditions in European art. This exhibition explores the radical impulses behind impressionism and its seemingly endless adaptability, as artists from around the world came to Paris to study and returned to their homelands, assimilating what they had absorbed and propelling the movement further. 

The Worcester Art Museum pioneered new artistic horizons by embracing impressionism early in its history. The French and American impressionism collections at the Worcester Art Museum have long drawn visitors to the galleries. The first directors purchased works by Monet from his Parisian dealer, Durand-Ruel, as well as directly from American impressionists, making the Museum one of the first in the United States to collect impressionism actively as contemporary art. Over the past 125 years, this collection has grown, encapsulating the story of the movement’s roots and emergence in France and its subsequent expansion to the United States, Germany, Scandinavia, and beyond. Highlighting more than 30 artists, including Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Mary Cassatt, Childe Hassam, and Max Slevogt, this exhibition demonstrates impressionism’s international allure, captured in subjects as far-flung as Monet’s famed Giverny lily pond to the natural wonders of the Grand Canyon. 

Childe Hassam, "Gathering Flowers in a French Garden", 1888. Oil on canvas. Worcester Art Museum, Theodore T. and Mary G. Ellis Collection, 1940.87. Image courtesy of the Worcester Art Museum.
Childe Hassam, Gathering Flowers in a French Garden, 1888. Oil on canvas. Worcester Art Museum, Theodore T. and Mary G. Ellis Collection, 1940.87. Image courtesy of the Worcester Art Museum.
John Singer Sargent (American, 1856-1925), "Oranges at Corfu", about 1909. Oil on canvas. Worcester Art Museum, Theodore T. and Mary G. Ellis Collection, 1940.99. Image courtesy of the Worcester Art Museum.
John Singer Sargent (American, 1856-1925), Oranges at Corfu, about 1909. Oil on canvas. Worcester Art Museum, Theodore T. and Mary G. Ellis Collection, 1940.99. Image courtesy of the Worcester Art Museum.

Frontiers of Impressionism: Paintings from the Worcester Art Museum is organized by

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Past Exhibitions

Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit

Selections from the Peter J. Cohen Collection

On view April 13, 2023 through November 15, 2023

Artist Previously Known, Untitled, n.d. Chromogenic print. 5 x 7 inches. Peter J. Cohen Collection.
Artist Previously Known, Untitled, n.d. Chromogenic print. 5 x 7 inches. Peter J. Cohen Collection.
Artist Previously Known, Untitled, n.d. Chromogenic print. Peter J. Cohen Collection.
Artist Previously Known, Untitled, n.d. Chromogenic print. Peter J. Cohen Collection.

Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit celebrates the anonymous women who shaped the evolution of vernacular photography during the ‘analog era’ of the late 19th to the late 20th century. The result of a year long collaboration between gallerist Julie Saul and independent curator Carly Ries, this exhibition brings together photographs from the Collection of Peter J. Cohen, a photographic archive spanning the analog era from the 1890s through the 1990s.

This exhibition charts photography’s momentum across the 20th century as a medium for self expression alongside the expansion of women’s independence. As self-trained image makers and collaborative subjects, women played out new ways of being in the world both in front of, and behind, the camera. Arranged here in constellations, the photographs connect through shared gestures, shadow patterns and echoing poses of women belonging to an intersection of race, class, age, and era.

These photographs record vibrant times, magic hours, private performances, and experiments with identity. One captured moment contains countless narrative directions speckled with signifiers: a photographer’s shadow spills across a lawn, the silhouette revealing the cinched waist of a dress. Someone glances at the camera with a knowing look, or turns her face away in refusal. Another woman holds her camera at eye-level and gazes into a mirror, recording herself as the author of the image. The journey made by each image is evident on the surface of the photograph itself, with its frayed edges, creases, and scratches. Each hint offers a clue to who, when, why, with each image leading only to more questions.

On these walls, the wide range of formats and visual experimentation hint at divergent and coexisting waves of image-making across the twentieth century. The photograph records an impulse to hold still for a moment, offered to us now for a longer look. With time on our side, we can let our eyes linger on what she wanted us to see.

Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit is curated by celebrated gallerist Julie Saul and Carly Ries, and brings together photographs from the Collection of Peter J. Cohen.

Sponsored in part by

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Past Exhibitions

Fleurish: The Art of Naeem Khan

On view February 25, 2023 through February 11, 2024

Naeem Khan (Indian, b. 1958), "Floating Flowers Fuchsia and Gold", 2023. Mixed media on silkscreen. 4 panels at 58 x 58 inches each, overall: 119 x 119 inches. Courtesy of the artist.
Naeem Khan (Indian, b. 1958), Floating Flowers Fuchsia and Gold, 2023. Mixed media on silkscreen. 4 panels at 58 x 58 inches each, overall: 119 x 119 inches. Courtesy of the artist.

As part of its ongoing exhibition series exploring the intersection of art and fashion, the Tampa Museum of Art presents a series of paintings by globally renowned fashion designer Naeem Khan. Khan works independently, as well collaboratively with artist Stanley Casselman as the collective KACE, to create large-scale works inspired by his ongoing exploration of flora, light, and color. Five monumental works, comprised of paint and sequins represent Khan’s inaugural museum exhibition.

The Khan Family, steeped in the tradition of fashion and textiles for over 100 years, is renowned for their atelier in Mumbai and their luxurious couture worn by luminaries and India’s royalty. Khan arrived in New York at the age of 17, travelling to the United States with his father. A business appointment with Halston changed the course of his life as the famed designer decided on the spot that Khan would be his protégé. With Halston as his mentor, Khan became immersed in Manhattan’s art and social circles. From the atelier to Studio 54 and Andy Warhol’s Factory, Khan emerged as a designer at a pivotal moment in the 1970s where the lines between art, fashion, music, film, and celebrity were often blurred, further signifying New York City as the epicenter of creativity.

While working with Halston, Khan met Andy Warhol who frequently collaborated with Halston on his projects. Khan participated in their collaborations by drawing the flowers for their designs, specifically poppies. Warhol, like Halston, took Khan under his wing and once told the young designer, “You shouldn’t hold your pencil that way. Let me show you how to draw.” Flowers, inspired by his work and friendship with Warhol as well as the flora in his home country of India, anchor Khan’s visual language.

In 2020, painter Stanley Casselman introduced himself to Khan at one of his fashion shows and was immediately struck by the beauty and power of the designer’s work. Casselman observed that Khan’s designs could be translated into painting. Conversations lead to collaboration and today the two artists work both individually and together under the name KACE. Works, such as Jardin Chrome and Jardin d’Or, feature Khan’s elaborate sequined blooms in concert with Casselman’s gestural paint strokes. The compositions reveal the signature elements of each artists’ practice. Here, Khan’s ornate craftsmanship and Casselman’s abstract mark making unite in dazzling effect.

Khan’s solo works, Floating Flowers Pink and Silver and Floating Flowers Fuchsia and Gold, nod to his familial history with fabric, color, composition, and texture while pushing the boundaries of contemporary painting. Each flower is comprised of hundreds of sequins and beads. Delicately sewn onto silkscreen material, Khan suspends the panels one over the other, creating a sculptural quality to the paintings. Fabricated in a range of petal formations and size, Khan’s blossoms both capture and reflect light. As if suspended in space, the flowers come to life, symbolizing Khan’s creative past and his burgeoning artistic future. 

KACE (Naeem Khan, Indian, b. 1958 and Stanley Casselman, American, b. 1963), "Jardin Noir", 2021. Mixed media on silkscreen. 93 x 93 inches. Courtesy of KACE.
KACE (Naeem Khan, Indian, b. 1958 and Stanley Casselman, American, b. 1963), Jardin Noir, 2021. Mixed media on silkscreen. 93 x 93 inches. Courtesy of KACE.
KACE (Naeem Khan, Indian, b. 1958 and Stanley Casselman, American, b. 1963). Detail, "Jardin d’or", 2022. Chrome over mixed media on silkscreen. 4 panels at 60 x 60 inches each, overall: 123 x 123 inches. Courtesy of KACE.
KACE (Naeem Khan, Indian, b. 1958 and Stanley Casselman, American, b. 1963). Detail, Jardin d’or, 2022. Chrome over mixed media on silkscreen. 4 panels at 60 x 60 inches each, overall: 123 x 123 inches. Courtesy of KACE.

Fleurish: The Art of Naeem Khan is presented in conjunction with the Tampa Museum of Art’s annual fundraiser CITY: Fashion + Art + Culture.

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Past Exhibitions

Salman Toor: No Ordinary Love

On view February 23, 2023 through June 4, 2023

Salman Toor (Pakastani, b. 1983), "Three Friends in a Cab", 2021. Oil on panel. 16 x 20 inches. © Salman Toor; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York. Photo: Farzad Owrang.
Salman Toor (Pakastani, b. 1983), Three Friends in a Cab, 2021. Oil on panel. 16 x 20 inches. © Salman Toor; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York. Photo: Farzad Owrang.

Salman Toor: No Ordinary Love features more than 45 paintings and works on paper made between 2019 and 2022, that weave together motifs found in historical paintings with recognizable 21st-century moments to create new worlds based in Toor’s imagination. The exhibition captures the ways in which Toor engages with art history to center brown, queer figures and to challenge enshrined notions of power and sexuality.  

Toor (Pakistani, b. 1983) lives and works in New York City, but grew up in Lahore, his birthplace in Pakistan. Shaped by these viewpoints, Toor’s artistic practice explores his hopes and anxieties about the queer experience in both his ancestral and adopted countries. Throughout his work, Toor blurs sensual pleasure with satire and mines his deep knowledge of the European, American, and South Asian painterly tradition. 

This exhibition is organized by the Baltimore Museum of Art

Presenting Sponsor of No Ordinary Love: Life On Canvas

Salman Toor, "Construction Men", 2021. Oil on canvas. 60 x 48 inches. The artist and Luhring Augustine, New York.
Salman Toor (Pakistani, b. 1983) Construction Men, 2021. Oil on canvas. 60 x 48 inches. © Salman Toor; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York. Photo: Farzad Owrang.
Salman Toor Salman Toor (Pakistani, b. 1983), "Thunderstorm", 2021. Oil on panel. 30 x 24 inches. © Salman Toor; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York. Photo: Farzad Owrang.
Salman Toor Salman Toor (Pakistani, b. 1983), Thunderstorm, 2021. Oil on panel. 30 x 24 inches. © Salman Toor; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York. Photo: Farzad Owrang.

About Salman Toor

Salman Toor (born in Lahore, Pakistan, in 1983) currently lives and works in New York. His first institutional solo exhibition, Salman Toor: How Will I Know, was recently presented at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (2020-2021). Toor’s work has been featured in numerous group exhibitions and projects, including Living Histories: Queer Views and Old Masters at Frick Madison, New York, NY, and others held at the RISD Museum, Providence, RI; the Public Art Fund, New York, NY; Phi Foundation for Contemporary Art, Montréal, Canada; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, IL; Lahore Biennale 2018, Pakistan; and the 2016 Kochi-Muziris Biennale, India. Toor is the recipient of a Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant, and his work is in many public collections. Toor’s work will be presented in the forthcoming Lyon Biennial, and his first solo exhibition in China opened at M Woods in Beijing.

Learn more about the artist.

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Time for Change: Art and Social Unrest in the Jorge M. Pérez Collection

On view November 10, 2022 through August 27, 2023

Barthélémy Toguo (Cameroonian, b. 1967), Road to Exile, 2018. Wooden boat, cloth bundles, glass bottles, and plastic containers. 120 x 60 x 45 inches. Jorge M. Pérez Collection, Miami. Installation at the Tampa Museum of Art.
Barthélémy Toguo (Cameroonian, b. 1967), Road to Exile, 2018. Wooden boat, cloth bundles, glass bottles, and plastic containers. 120 x 60 x 45 inches. Jorge M. Pérez Collection, Miami. Installation at the Tampa Museum of Art.

Time for Change: Art and Social Unrest in the Jorge M. Pérez Collection looks at how artists explore conflicts and contradictions of contemporary society, as well as analyze historical events and reframes them within the present. An interest in the marginalized, the marginal and the margins (of society, of history) unites the works in the exhibition. Time for Change was first presented as the inaugural exhibition in December 2019 at El Espacio 23, a contemporary art space founded by collector and philanthropist Jorge M. Pérez. Featuring artists from across the globe, the exhibition highlights art—from painting and sculpture to video and works on paper—that address unrest through allegory, metaphor or veiled allusion.​ 

Time for Change: Art and Social Unrest in the Jorge M. Pérez Collection was curated by José Roca for El Espacio 23.

Exhibition Sponsor: Gobioff Foundation

Gobioff Foundation

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Travels in Italy: a 19th-Century Journey through Photography

On view January 28, 2023 through July 16, 2023

Francis Frith (British, 1822–1898), "The Pantheon", from the album "Rome Photographed", ca. 1873. Albumen silver print. 6 3/4 x 9 3/8 in. Publisher: William MacKenzie, Paternoster Row. London, Glasgow & Edinburg. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. William Knight Zewadski. 1989.109.057.f
Francis Frith (British, 1822-1898), The Pantheon, from the album Rome Photographed, ca. 1873. Albumen silver print. 6 3/4 x 9 3/8 in. Publisher: William MacKenzie, Paternostor Row. London, Glasglow & Edinburg. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. William Knight Zewadski. 1989.109.057.f

Travel in the 19th century was difficult, expensive and time-consuming. Prior to the discovery of a way to record an image by photography in 1839, the majority of Americans had only stories and the possibility of access to drawings, paintings, and etchings to illustrate the wonders of exotic lands overseas. Early photographers quickly realized that there was a demand for images of foreign lands and famous antiquities.

Travels In Italy will feature vintage photographs from the TMA’s collection of some of Italy’s most popular cultural draws like The Pantheon in Rome, the canals of Venice, and the Leaning Tower of Pisa, as well as lesser known treasures such as the Piazza del Duomo in Milan and Genoa’s Interior Gallery of the Camposanta. Included will be some of the best-known names in 19th-century travel photography including Giorgio Sommer, Francis Frith, Robert Macpherson, and the Alinari studio.

Supporting Sponsor

Frank E. Duckwall Foundation - Making Tampa Bay a Better Place
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Poetry in Paint: The Artists of Old Tampa Bay

Selections from Alfred Frankel’s Artists of Old Florida, 1840-1960

On view August 18, 2022 through January 16, 2023

Hillsborough River
Harry Bierce (American, 1886-1954). Hillsborough River, n.d . Oil on canvas. 14 x 18 inches. Frankel Collection.

Collector Dr. Alfred Frankel has studied and collected the paintings of early Florida artists for the past 40 years. After meeting Michael Turbeville in the 1980s, an antiques dealer based in Tampa, he started to collect relatively unknown artists capturing Florida’s untamed landscape. To date, Dr. Frankel has acquired nearly 500 works of art. His holdings not only depict Florida’s raw beauty, but the collection reveals how local artists from Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Gainesville, were influential in developing art communities across the state in the early 20th century. Poetry in Paint: The Artists of Old Tampa Bay explores artists essential to the founding of the Tampa Bay area’s creative circles and features painters such as Harry Bierce, Theodore Coe, and Belle Weeden McNeer. Dr. Frankel has extensively researched the artists in his vast collection, which has resulted in the self-publication of the books Artists of Old Florida, 1840-1960 and The Dictionary of Florida Artists.

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Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: In Dialogue

On View July 21, 2022 through October 23, 2022

Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). The Woman in the Light, Harlem, NY, 1980. Gelatin silver print, 20 x 24 inches. © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.
Carrie Mae Weems (American, b. 1953). Harlem Street, 1976–77. Gelatin silver print, 5 5/16 x 8 15/16 inches. © Carrie Mae Weems. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: In Dialogue is organized by the Grand Rapids Art Museum, with presenting support generously provided by MillerKnoll. Additional support is provided by Wege Foundation, Agnes Gund, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Eenhoorn, LLC.

Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: In Dialogue brings together a focused selection of work from a period of over forty years by two of today’s most important and influential photo-based artists.

Dawoud Bey and Carrie Mae Weems, both born in 1953, came of age during a period of dramatic change in the American social landscape. Since meeting at the Studio Museum in Harlem in 1976, the two artists have been intellectual colleagues and companions. Over the following five decades, Bey and Weems have explored and addressed similar themes: race, class, representation, and systems of power, creating work that is grounded in specific African American events and realities while simultaneously speaking to a multitude of human conditions. This exhibition, for the first time, brings their work together to shed light on their unique trajectories and modes of presentation, and their shared consciousness and principles.

From the outset of their careers, both Bey and Weems have operated from a deep social commitment to participate in, describe, and define culture. In seeking to express themselves fully, both artists have expanded possibilities within photography and video to address their chosen subjects. Each engaged in the material and conceptual developments in the art world that were gaining prominence beginning in the 1970s, just as their careers were developing. As Bey and Weems have continued to push their own work forward, their art and approach have inspired notable younger artists such as LaToya Ruby Frazier, Lyle Ashton Harris, Mickalene Thomas, and Hank Willis Thomas.

Both Bey and Weems create work in focused series that gives them the opportunity to fully explore their complex and layered ideas. Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: In Dialogue is arranged in five sections that present the two artists’ work in thematic pairings, emphasizing both their mutual concerns and distinct artistic approaches.

This exhibition pairs the two artists’ work in five sections that emphasize both their distinct artistic approaches and their shared interests and concerns: Early Work, Broadening the Scope, Resurrecting Black Histories, Memorial and Requiem, and Revelations in the Landscape. Also featured in the exhibition are videos by Bey and Weems that show their approaches to the moving photographic image as an extension of their still photographic series.

Beginning with Early Work, viewers will travel through the 35mm photography Bey and Weems captured at the outset of their careers, embracing both spontaneous scenes of city life, and more quiet, domestic interactions. In Broadening the Scope, Bey and Weems begin staging their photographs — Bey capturing posed street portraits of young subjects in urban environments and Weems staging her groundbreaking, narrative-based Kitchen Table Series.

In Resurrecting Black Histories, we see the artists’ deepened interest in documenting places and moments heavy with historical importance. Bey captures safe houses and meeting sites in near darkness along the Underground Railroad of Ohio, while Weems’ somber Sea Island Series explores the African legends and folklore that was retained within the Gullah culture of the Southern United States. In Memorial and Requiem, both artists become full-fledged in their commitment to cultural documentation, paying homage to tragic historic events. In the final section, Revelations in the Landscape, the artists return to a more distanced observation, contemplating the effects of time through location. Bey revisits Harlem, now photographing the effects of gentrification in color, while Weems appears in her own shots against the ancient structures of Rome, clad all in black as she guides the viewer through age-old institutional powers abroad.

Presenting Sponsor

Bank of America

Artworks

Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). Self and Shadow, New York, NY, 1980. Gelatin silver print, 20 x 24 inches. © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.
Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). Taneesha, 1999. Internal dye diffusion transfer prints, 30 x 22 inches each (30 x 66 inches overall). © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.
Carrie Mae Weems (American, b. 1953). Reclining Girl, Fiji, 1982–83. Gelatin silver print, 5 5/16 x 8 15/16 inches. © Carrie Mae Weems. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.
Carrie Mae Weems (American, b. 1953) The Edge of Time–Ancient Rome, from the series Roaming, 2006. Digital chromogenic print, 73 x 61 inches. © Carrie Mae Weems. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.
Carrie Mae Weems (American, b. 1953). First Self Portrait, 1975. Gelatin silver print, 8 5/8 x 8 5/8 inches. © Carrie Mae Weems. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.
Carrie Mae Weems (American, b. 1953). Untitled (Woman and Daughter with Children) from The Kitchen Table Series, 1990. Gelatin silver print, 27 ¼ x 27 1/4. © Carrie Mae Weems. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.
Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). The Birmingham Project: Taylor Falls and Deborah Hackworth, 2012. Archival pigment prints mounted to dibond, 40 x 64 inches (two separate 40 x 32 inch photographs). © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.
Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). Former Renaissance Ballroom Site, Harlem, NY, from the series Harlem Redux, 2016. Archival pigment print, 40 x 48 inches. © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.
Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). Couple in Prospect Park, 1990 (printed 2018). Gelatin silver print, 21 7/8 x 17 1/2 inches. Grand Rapids Art Museum, Museum Purchase, 2018.22. © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.
Carrie Mae Weems (American, b. 1953). Untitled (Woman playing solitaire) from The Kitchen Table Series, 1990. Gelatin silver print, 40 x 40 inches. © Carrie Mae Weems. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.
Dawoud Bey (American, b. 1953). The Birmingham Project: Wallace Simmons and Eric Allums, 2012. Archival pigment prints mounted to dibond, 40 x 64 inches (two separate 40 x 32 inch photographs). © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery.

Exhibition Catalogue

Accompanying the exhibition is an illustrated catalogue published with DelMonico Books and distributed by D.A.P. (Distributed Art Publishers, Inc.) which documents Bey and Weems’ photographs and includes scholarly essays by GRAM Chief Curator Ron Platt and National Museum of African American History & Culture Deputy Director, Kinshasa Holman Conwill, along with written reflections by both artists.

About Dawoud Bey

Portrait of Dawoud Bey by Whitten Sabbatini

Photographer Dawoud Bey’s first exhibition was presented at the Studio Museum in Harlem, in 1979. Since then, his work has been presented internationally to critical and popular acclaim. Recent large-scale exhibitions of his photographs have been presented at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Tate Modern, London. Bey’s writings on his own and others’ work are included in Dawoud Bey: Seeing Deeply and Dawoud Bey on Photographing People and Communities, and High Times, Hard Times: New York Painting 1967 – 1975. Learn more about Dawoud Bey.

About Carrie Mae Weems

Portrait of Carrie Mae Weems

Over her career, Carrie Mae Weems has created a complex body of artwork through which she explores power, class, black identity, womanhood, the historical past – and its resonance in the present moment. In addition to photography, Weems creates video, performance, and works of public art, and she organizes thematic gatherings which bring together creative thinkers across a broad array of disciplines. Her work has been exhibited across the world, at venues such as the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, the Solomon Guggenheim Museum, the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo, Seville, Spain, and the American Academy in Rome, Italy. Learn more about Carrie Mae Weems.

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All in Favor: New Works in the Permanent Collection

On view June 30, 2022 through July 30, 2023

Suchitra Mattai (Guyanese, b. 1973), Alter Ego, 2020. Acrylic, embroidery floss, vintage sari, fabric, appliques, brush. 58 x 46 inches.
Suchitra Mattai (Guyanese, b. 1973), Alter Ego, 2020. Acrylic, embroidery floss, vintage sari, fabric, appliques, brush. 58 x 46 inches.
Two-vial perfume bottle with three-tier handle
Two-vial perfume bottle with three-tier handle. Glass; Eastern Mediterranean; Roman Imperial period, ca. 2nd-3rd cent. ce. 6 ¾ x 2 ⅞ x 1 ¼ inches. Tampa Museum of Art, Gift of Ms. Lili Kaufmann, 2021.045.

Over the past five years the Tampa Museum of Art has received a record number of gifts to the permanent collection. The exhibition, All in Favor: New Works in the Permanent Collection, highlights the many recent works that have entered TMA’s holdings, ranging from ancient glass and bronze objects to contemporary paintings and sculptures from today’s leading artists. Artists on view include the collective assume vivid astro focus (AVAF), Christo, Jane Corrigan, Mitchell Johnson, Suchitra Mattai, Simphiwe Ndzube, Roger Palmer, Daisy Patton, Jaume Plensa, Claudia Ryan, John Scott, and others.

Collections may be described as the heart of any museum. At their best, collections should inspire museum staff and influence exhibition and education programming. More importantly, collections should reflect the community at large and create a lasting impression on visitors. It is common for museum objects to become like old friends, with visitors returning again and again to see their favorite work or artist on view. Acquisitions, or works collected by a museum, can define a museum and tell its story. These objects not only reflect the institution’s evolving vision and mission over time but also highlight socio-political events and ideologies, creative choices and nuances in artistic technique, as well as technological advances that define specific periods and genres of art. 

The Tampa Museum of Art’s collection focuses on two main areas: ancient art, and modern and contemporary art. Throughout its storied history, TMA has prided itself on its growing collections. In 1986, the Museum acquired its first major collection of ancient art from the Joseph Veach Noble Collection, which continues to anchor the Museum’s Greek and Roman antiquities. The modern and contemporary art collection includes works in five major groups—painting, sculpture, prints, photography, and new media/installation art. In total, the Museum has acquired nearly 7,500 objects. 

Collecting institutions such as the Tampa Museum of Art maintain strict standards of acquisition policies. While each museum’s procedures may be slightly different, the goal is to adhere to high levels of research with acute attention paid to an object’s history, its relevance to other works in the collection, as well as its needs for long-term care and conservation. Like many museums, TMA works with a Collections Committee, a dedicated group of Board and community members who review artworks recommended by curatorial staff. Each object is carefully discussed and voted on, with each assessment concluding (hopefully) with the resounding vote of approval, “All in favor, say aye.” 

All in Favor: New Works in the Permanent Collection presents a select group of objects and artworks recently acquired by the Tampa Museum of Art. Over the past five years, the Museum has accepted more than 200 works of art, the majority of which have been generously gifted by the Tampa Bay area community. All in Favor looks at a mere sample of the many works that have entered the collection, with a special focus on new contemporary paintings and sculptures, as well as ancient glass and bronze pitchers. The exhibition not only celebrates the growth of TMA’s collection but the heart of its priorities—sharing our holdings with the community and fostering a new generation of collection favorites.

All in Favor is one of several new exhibitions dedicated to the Museum’s permanent collection that will be on view for long-term displays over the next five years.

This exhibition is supported in part by:

Culture Builds Florida - Florida Department of State - Division of Arts & Culture
Tampa Museum of Art Foundation
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Past Exhibitions

Highlights from the Karam Collection

On view November 11, 2021 through January 15, 2023

Bust of young man holding palm frond
Bust of young man holding palm frond, Stone sculpture, Roman Syria, ca. 2nd-3rd cent. CE. Karam Collection, USF Libraries’ Special Collections, 63

In 1998, Dr. Farid Karam and his wife Jehanne generously donated 149 objects to the Special Collections of the University of South Florida (USF) Libraries. The authentic antiquities originate from ancient Syria, Phoenicia, Egypt, Greece and the Arab world. In date, they range from the Bronze Age to the early Islamic period (ca. fifteenth-century BCE – thirteenth-century CE). The metal, stone, glass and ceramic artifacts include cosmetic and medical implements, utility vessels and oil lamps, as well as sculptures and figurines. This presentation of 58 highlights is the first time the Karam Collection of Lebanese Antiquities is on display for the general public. The selection reveals Dr. Karam’s profound interest in the diversity of ancient cultures found in the Eastern Mediterranean. 

Learn more about the Karam Collection at the USF Libraries.

About Farid Karam, M.D. 

Farid Karam (1929–2018) was born in a Greek Orthodox village in northern Lebanon. After specializing in plastic surgery in Cleveland, Ohio (1961), he taught medicine at the American University of Beirut Hospital until 1976. Due to the outbreak of the Lebanese Civil War (1975–1990) he moved to Bay Pines, Florida. In 1992, Dr. Karam was appointed Associate Professor of Plastic Surgery at the University of South Florida College of Medicine in Tampa, Florida. Before returning to Lebanon, where he continued to practice otolaryngology and facial plastic surgery, Dr. Karam donated his antiquities collection to USF. Since 1977, Dr. Karam was a member of the World Scout Foundation headed by King Carl Gustav of Sweden and received the highest medal for life achievements, the Bronze Wolf Medal. Dr. Karam passed away on March 1, 2018, in his hometown in northern Lebanon. 

The Ancient Levant 

The Eastern Mediterranean seaboard, also known as the Levant, which is the region of present-day Syria, Lebanon and Israel, has been inhabited since prehistoric times. Some of the oldest cities in world history were founded there. From the Bronze Age, peoples called Canaanites, Phoenicians or Philistines populated the region. The Israelites appeared in the Iron Age. They all spoke Semitic languages. Phoenicians based their wealth on trade – especially purple dye and wine as well as cedar wood and glass. They also contributed their alphabet to the development of ancient civilizations across the Mediterranean. During the early first millennium BCE, Phoenician trade colonies were established across the southwestern Mediterranean, most notably the city of Carthage. The Eastern Mediterranean coast meanwhile came under the successive spheres of influence from Egypt, Assyria, Babylonia and Persia. The Seleucids and Ptolemies, dynasties ruling from Babylon and Egypt respectively, competed for power over the region during much of the Hellenistic period (ca. 323–30 BCE). In 64 BCE, Roman rule was established and for the following four centuries, Syria became one of the richest eastern provinces of the Roman Empire. In the Mediaeval period, the region first came under the influence of the Christian Byzantine empire and then the Muslim Arab world.