BELOIT, Wisconsin — Thursday, Aug. 28, starting at 4 p.m., the Wright Museum of Art at Beloit College will hold its Fall Reception featuring four new art exhibits.
“There really is something for everyone at the reception,” said Curator James Pearson. “From an American Landscape painting of the 1860s, to a copy of the world’s first art magazine, to screen prints by Andy Warhol, to the work of Japanese American painter. No matter what type of art you like, you’ll find something at the reception that will make you glad you came in to see it.”
PAN: A Graphic Arts Time-Capsule of Europe, 1895-1900
With funding from George Parker II, the Wright Museum has been able to bring in a traveling art exhibition based around the world’s first art magazine, PAN.
“PAN was a very ambitious project started back in 1895,” Pearson said. “The magazine had contributions from writers who were schooled under Nietzsche, but it really tried to emphasize visual art. The artists who created work for the magazine included Rodin, Seurat and Signac.”
According to the curators of the exhibit, PAN really sowed the seeds of graphic design. A lot of the works were flat and stylized, with lots of color and other design elements. And the works were printed directly into the magazine, from the printing press.
“It’s 180 linear feet of artwork that you won’t see anywhere else,” Pearson said.
In the North Gallery, visitors will see a selection of prints and paintings from Michiko Itatani, a Japanese American painter and professor from the Art Institute of Chicago.
“Michiko had a show here at the Wright back in the ’90s, and she left us with a really great painting,” Pearson said. “Over the summer, she donated a group of paintings and prints of a similar style. A Beloit College student working with us during the summer has been putting this exhibit together. It’s turning out be a kind of transition. By looking at the work, you can see the style and colors she started with and what she ended up with 10 years later. It’s like watching your garden bloom over the summer.”
In the South Gallery, the museum will be exhibiting a selection of recent acquisitions.
“The past two years have brought a really eclectic mixture of objects to the Wright, and we wanted to show the campus and the community these new acquisitions while also thanking those that donated these works,” Pearson said. “There really is something for everyone. From the very modern Andy Warhol pictures donated by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, to the Benzell landscape painting from 1860 donated by the Rev. R.S. Miller. It doesn’t matter what kind of art you like, you will find something in this show that you will remember.”
Other objects in this exhibit include cartoons by Warren Miller, Russian political posters from the 1970s, paintings and prints from Wisconsin-based husband and wife artists Schomer Lichtner and Ruth Grotenrath, and a set of chairs from the German Weimar period.
“Honestly,” Pearson said with a telling smile, “decorative arts and furniture are not my area of expertise, but everyone who likes furniture looks at these Hoffman-style chairs and the settee and they stop in their tracks. Their jaw, literally, drops open.”
Yuyanapaq: Para Recordar
On the second floor, in the Neese Gallery, the museum will be exhibiting 16 photographs documenting the Shining Path rebellion in Peru during the 1980s and 1990s.
“After the rebellion was quelled, the government of Peru put together a committee to decide on how to memorialize those who died, and to prevent future social destruction,” Pearson said.
The photos were taken by native photojournalists; citizens of Peru watching the destruction unfold in their own neighborhoods.
The Wright Museum of Art is a teaching museum on the campus of Beloit College. The museum is free and open to the public, Tuesday through Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Fall Reception will take place Thursday, Aug. 28, starting at 4 p.m. Light refreshments will be served, and docents will be available for tours of the exhibits and building. For more about this or any of the exhibits and programs at the Wright Museum, log on to www.beloit.edu/wright or call (608) 363-2095.
Posted Aug. 27, 2014