Tag Archive | MOMA

Modern Art Monday Presents: Charring Cross Bridge By Andre Derain

Charring Cross Bridge
Photo By Gail

In this cityscape, Andre Derain (1880 – 1954) rendered the London sky with dramatic color. In the summer of 1905, he developed the bright palette of Charring Cross Bridge while painting alongside his elder peer, Henri Matisse in Coullioure, France. There, the two artists produced their most radical paintings to date — paintings purged of shadows and filled with imaginative, unbridled colors. When several of these works were exhibited in Paris that fall, the public and critics found the palette to be startling, and ridiculed their efforts. As Derain later recalled, “It was the era of photography. This may have influenced us, and played a part in our reaction against anything resembling a snapshot of life. Colors became charges of dynamite.”

Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

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Eye On Design: MacAndreas Tartan Mini Kilt with Sporran and Safety-Pin Mouthpiece By Vivienne Westwood

Westwood Kilt
All Photos By Gail

Pioneering designer Vivienne Westwood’s seminal 1993/94 Anglomania collection enshrined the kilt in high fashion. It was worn on the runway by Kate Moss, who sported the look shown here, and by Naomi Campbell, who famously fell while wearing the Super Elevation Gillie platforms. The kilt evolved from a single long piece of durable, harsh twill in muted colors that Scottish Highland men wrapped around the lower body, belted, and the passed over one shoulder.

Beginning in the late seventeenth century, pleats were sown into the back the skirt, loops were added for ease of belting, and the top length formed an autonomous garment. For Highland clans , the kilt symbolized familial, military and geographic loyalties. Following a series of incursions known as the Jacobite Uprisings, the garment was banned by English law in 1746, and its use declined precipitously. The kilt was revived by nineteenth-century elites, who invented new traditions around its use.

Kilt Sporran Detail
Kilt Sporran Detail

Worn by the military until the mid-twentieth century, the kilt became a nostalgic symbol for Scottish nationals in diaspora, and it is a common element of girls’ private school uniforms and ceremonial wedding attire. Punks subversively paired it with hoodies and graphic T-shirts

Photographed at part of the Exhibit, Items: Is Fashion Modern? on Through January 28th, 2018 at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

Modern Art Monday Presents: Cell VI By Louise Bourgeois

Louise Bourgeois Cell VI Front View
All Photos By Gail

Louise Bourgeois (1911 – 2010) began her series of room-like sculptures called Cells in 1991, eventually creating some sixty examples in various sizes and of varying complexity.

Louise Bourgeois Cell VI Right Side View

Some are filled with with a haunting mix of her personal belongings and her sculptures.

Louise Bourgeois Cell VI Back View

Cell VI is among the simplest. Bourgeois often chose the color Blue for its serene and calming effect.

Louise Bourgeois Cell VI Front View

Photographed as part of at the the exhibit, Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait, at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC Through January 28th, 2018.

Modern Art Monday Presents: May Ray The Rope Dancer Accompanies Herself With Shadows

The Rope Dancer Accompanies Herself
Photo By Gail

Man Ray (Born Emmanuel Radnitzky, 1890 – 1976) became dissatisfied with his initial composition for this work, The Rope Dancer Accompanies Herself With Shadows (1916), which was inspired by a tightrope performance he had seen in a vaudeville show. He had originally arranged pieces of colored paper  cut into the shapes of the tightrope dancer’s acrobatic forms. Glancing down at the floor, he noticed that the discarded scraps of paper from which the shapes had been cut formed an abstract pattern resulting from chance. Comparing the accidental pattern with shadows that a dancer might have cast on the floor, he incorporated it into his composition.

Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

Modern Art Monday Presents: Norman Lewis, Phantasy II

Phantasy II
Photo By Gail

Norman Lewis (1909 – 1979), began his art career as a figurative painter, focusing on life in Harlem. In  1946, he announced that he wanted to create art that broke away from what he called “its stagnation in too much tradition.” Inspired by the writings and art of the Russian painter Vasily Kandinsky, one of the first artists to create abstract paintings, Lewis abandoned representation in favor of the “conceptual expression” of ideas. Like other Abstract Expressionists working in New York, Lewis was deep interested in music, and especially jazz, which influenced the painting  of  Phantasy II (1946). In an automatic process he made a linear composition with boldly colored lines and forms akin to the improvisational structure of jazz.

Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

Modern Art Monday Presents: Composition-40-2011 By Shirana Shahbazi

Composition-40-2011
Photo By Gail

Shirana Shahbazi (b. 1974) makes photographs in classic genres like portraiture, still life, and landscape. Alternating between abstraction and representation, her vividly colored pictures are made in the crisp style of commercial studio photography without the aid of digital tools.  She achieves her abstract compositions, such as Composition-40-2011 (2011) by photographing geometric volumes and pedestals whose sides are painted various colors, making multiple exposures of the same set of elements, and turning them between exposures to create an interplay between surface and depth.

This work is by an artist from a nation whose citizens would be denied entry into the United States according to recent presidential executive orders. This is one of several such artworks from the Museum of Modern Art’s collection installed throughout its fifth floor galleries to affirm the ideals of welcome and freedom as vital to MoMA, as they are to the United States.

Modern Art Monday Presents: Robert Rauschenberg, Signs

Signs
Photo By Gail

A cacophonous summary of the grand aspirations and unrest of the late 196os, Robert Rauschenberg’s Signs (1970) was originally commissioned as a cover for Time Magazine. When the collage was rejected by the publication, Rauschenberg turned it into a print “conceived to remind us of the love, terror, and violence of the last 10 years. Danger lies in forgetting.” United States soldiers in Vietnam, peace protestors and the anonymous victim of an urban riot are combined with the images of five public figures, three of them recently murdered: President John F. Kennedy, presidential candidate Senator Robert F. Kennedy, and the civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. They are joined by Buzz Aldrin, the second person to walk on the moon, and the singer Janis Joplin, who died from a drug overdose a few months after Signs was made.

Photographed as part of the exhibit  Robert Rauschenberg: Among Friends, at the Museum of Modern Art Through September 17th, 2017.

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