In the News
C'ville Art BlogÉmilie Charmy—A Visceral Voice at The Fralin Museum of Art
Aug 29, 2013
The Émilie Charmy retrospective currently on display at the Fralin Museum of Art is perplexing.
Most of her paintings have a fierce inquisitive quality. Her application of paint gives expressive life to simple compositions. Single thick brush strokes resolve into a small elegant wrist or a delicate twist of hair. Although a few paintings, like "Nu tentant son sein," seem merely fast and crude, her work cultivates a rough and layered visceral quality. The show culminates with a painting so thickly built, it brings to mind the Balzac story "Unknown Masterpeice." Mounds of paint construct an obscure image, a self portrait, which viewers experience more through the care of each brush stoke than the foggy edged figure which haunts the picture plane.
artdaily.orgThe Fralin Museum of Art introduces Modern artist Émilie Charmy to American audiences with retrospective
Aug 26, 2013
Though one of the most compelling female voices in French modern art, Émilie Charmy remains largely unrecognized. Curator Matthew Affron hopes to change that with an exhibition at U.Va.’s Fralin Museum of Art, the first U.S. retrospective of her work. The exhibition runs from Aug. 23, 2013 through Feb. 2, 2014, then travels to the Arts Club of Chicago, where it will run from Feb. 27 through May 17, 2014.
Affron, the Muriel and Philip Berman Curator of Modern Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and formerly The Fralin’s Curator of Modern Art, said, “Charmy’s painting engaged with major artistic currents, from Impressionism and Post-Impressionism to Fauvism before World War I.” She pursued an expressive, sensuous, modernist naturalism thereafter.
C-villeReview: Rediscovering the masterworks of Ansel Adams
Aug 21, 2013
Ansel Adams’ photography is one of those things that’s easy to dismiss because we’ve seen so much of it reproduced in calendars, outsize posters, and the like. But after spending time with the actual photographs now on view at UVA’s Fralin Museum in Ansel Adams: A Legacy through October 13, I rediscovered the magic in Adams’ images of desert, mountain, and forest.
Printed in the 1960s and ’70s by Adams for the San Francisco Friends of Photography, the Meredith Collection of photographs is, in effect, a retrospective of Adams’ career from his early explorations of the medium in the 1920s, to familiar masterworks. The photographs came into the Merediths’ hands in 2002 after the SFFOP was dissolved. At the time, Tom Meredith, a committed conservationist from Austin, Texas, was looking to acquire four prints for his wife, Lynn. With the auction of the SFFOP holdings looming, the couple was talked into purchasing the entire collection in order to keep it intact.
The Washington PostWhat would compel a black American to move to Stalinist Russia?
Aug 16, 2013
The oil painting of a black Russian man lay quietly for years in a back corner of an antique shop in a dingy walking mall in Moscow.
Andy Leddy, a white American working on a U.S. government contract for a refugee program in 1992, a year after the Communist Party lost power, pulled the canvas out and unrolled it.
RIA NovostiExhibit Examines African-American Soviet Émigré's Legacy
Aug 02, 2013
An exhibition set to open this month at the University of Virginia will examine the family history of Lloyd Patterson, an African-American who emigrated to the Soviet Union in the 1930s and whose son became a child film star and a well-known Soviet poet.
Titled In the Shadow of Stalin: the Patterson Family in Painting and Film, the exhibition “will examine the Patterson family’s history in order to engage larger issues,” according to the university’s Fralin Museum of Art in Charlottesville, Virginia, which is hosting the exhibit from Aug. 23 to Dec. 22.
UVA TodayFralin Museum of Art’s ‘Looking at the New West’ Complements Ansel Adams Exhibit
Jun 04, 2013
Today’s American West looks very different from the pristine wilderness documented in the photographs of Ansel Adams.
In conjunction with the new Ansel Adams: A Legacy exhibit, The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia opens Looking at the New West: Contemporary Landscape Photography, on Friday. The exhibit, running through Dec. 15, focuses on six contemporary photographers’ explorations of the ever-changing scenery of the American West.
C'ville Art BlogLearning How to Read—On STrAY by Suzanne McClelland
May 28, 2013
Suzanne McClelland asks a lot of her audience. Her exhibition STrAY: Found Poems from a Lost Time, currently at the Fralin Museum of Art, is dense, complicated and poetic. For a casual viewer it may appear obtuse and contemporary in the worst possible way. For another viewer willing to invest time into closely exploring and examining the work, it opens windows to the grinding mechanisms of history and language.
C-villeFralin Museum’s “Corot to Cézanne” paints a portrait of the collectors
Apr 24, 2013
One of America’s great art connoisseurs and patrons, Paul Mellon was quoted as saying that he and his wife “almost never buy a painting or drawing we would not want to live with or see constantly.” Having cut his teeth on father Andrew Mellon’s renowned art collection (which formed the nucleus of the National Gallery of Art), Paul Mellon was graced with an extraordinarily refined eye.
This is evident in Corot to Cézanne: French Drawings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts now on view at the Fralin.
C-villeBreaking the chrysalis: Whistler's early work reveals non-conformist beauty
Feb 21, 2013
The butterfly of Becoming the Butterfly, The Fralin Museum's current exhibition of etchings and lithographs by James Abbott McNeill Whistler refers to the stylized butterfly that Whistler used to sign his work and the exhibition. Curated by Emilie Johnson, the show provides a succinct yet effective window into Whistler's evolution as an artist. This is the first of two shows at the museum focusing on the American 19th century master's prints (through April 28). The second (opening April 30), will feature portraits.
Born in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1834, Whistler began studying art when he was 9 in St. Petersburg, Russia, where his father, an eminent civil engineer, was employed by the Moscow-St. Petersburg Railway. Following the death of his father when Whistler was 15, the family returned to America.
UVA TodayWorkshops Meld Science, Art to Pique Middle School Girls' Interest in STEM Fields
Nov 08, 2012
Inside the dark room, six young girls huddle around a green glow. The glow comes from a green laser refracting through a large crystal that redirects beams to bounce off several carefully positioned small mirrors. A fog, produced by a hand-made machine that one girl continuously thumps, makes the beams more visible; the girls take digital pictures, adjusting the crystal or the laser to create a new shot.
Their enthusiasm is audible—besides the beat of the fog machine, the girls' exclamations fill the smoky green darkness as they move around, testing new angles with their cameras to get the perfect photograph. Afterward, in a brightly lit hallway, the girls talk excitedly about the images they captured before moving on to the next workshop.
The British Society for the History of ScienceThe British Society for the History of Science Great Exhibitions 2012
Sep 13, 2012
The Fralin's Making Science Visible: The Photography of Berenice Abbott was awarded third place in the small exhibitions category of the British Society of the History of Science's Great Exhibitions 2012.
C-villeJean Hélion's journey through abstraction at the Fralin Museum of Art
Sep 13, 2012
Jean Hélion: Reality and Abstraction, currently on view at U.Va.'s Fralin Museum of Art presents a small, yet rich collection of this under-appreciated artist's work. The eight paintings and numerous works on paper are both handsome works of art and revealing souvenirs from Hélion's artistic journey "through and then away from abstract art."
Curated by Matthew Affron, associate professor, McIntire Department of Art, the exhibition provides an excellent showcase of [French artist, Jean] Hélion's strong compositional sense. Whether working in oil on canvas, or watercolor, charcoal, and ink on paper, his abstract shapes have real authority. In his oils, Hélion uses alternating flat areas of color with volumetric modeling that recalls the work of Fernand Léger. Deftly arranged on the picture plane, these shapes achieve Hélion's ideal of "a surface fully organized and optically integrated." This compositional skill continues in Hélion's representational work where the unexpected placement of figures and objects in space adds drama and interest. Hélion uses a striking combination of cool and warm tones in his paintings. His works on paper rely on strong lines with subtle smudges and washes of watercolor and gouache.
artdaily.orgUniversity of Virginia's Fralin Museum of Art photography exhibit makes science visible
Sep 07, 2012
Making Science Visible: The Photography of Berenice Abbott, which opened Aug. 31 at the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, explores how the photography of Berenice Abbott (1898-1991) has been used in both artistic and scientific contexts.
Abbott's images are important in art, science, documentaries and the history of science education. Trained in New York as a sculptor, she left for Europe in 1921. In Paris, she became the Surrealist artist Man Ray's photographic assistant and saw the photographer Eugéne Atget's work. In 1929, Abbott returned to New York and began a series of documentary photographs of the city and directed the "Changing New York" project for the Works Progress Administration in 1939.
By the early 1950s, Abbott was experimenting with photographs of scientific subjects, and produced images of an array of scientific processes. On display in this exhibition are photographs of magnets, parabolic mirrors, insects, soap bubbles and bones created for scientific textbooks and Science Illustrated magazine. Her images represent a unique melding of science and art, which produces an aesthetic that compels the viewer while also conveying scientific ideas.
The New CriterionThe Adoration of the Magi by Bartolo di Fredi: A Masterpiece Reconstructed
Sep 01, 2012
Review of The Adoration of the Magi by Bartolo di Fredi: A Masterpiece Reconstructed organized by The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia (UVaM) on view at the Museum of Biblical Art (MOBIA), New York.
artdaily.orgUniversity of Virginia Fralin Museum of Art exhibits "Jean Hélion: Reality and Abstraction"
Aug 30, 2012
The French painter Jean Hélion made his name as an abstract painter. Throughout the 1930s, he created extraordinary geometrical compositions that balance pristine clarity with both a strongly dynamic feeling and a sense of unceasing transformation. But by the end of the decade, Hélion turned in a different direction and began to paint worldly subjects in a realistic style.
The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia explores Hélion's evolution in Jean Hélion: Reality and Abstraction. The exhibit, curated by art history professor Matthew Affron of the College of Arts & Sciences, who is also the museum's curator of modern art, runs from Aug. 31 through Dec. 16.
Hélion helped found an international artists' group called "Abstraction-Création" in Paris, participated in many important exhibitions in Europe, and forged connections with modern art circles in the United States. He spent much of the 1930s shuttling back andforth across the Atlantic and between studios located in Paris, New York City and Rockbridge Baths, Va. His evolution is more complicated than it might first appear, Affron said. "The abstract compositions had contained configurations of form, which were ultimately converted into recognizable figures and objects. And the newer figurative pictures possessed strongly formal qualities. Hélion complicates any simple opposition between notions of abstract art's detachment and realism's involvement in social immediacy."
Daily ProgressChinese ink paintings at UVa reveal a wealth of details
Aug 26, 2012
The artistic alchemy of ancient and modern Chinese masters will be presented in a major exhibition... Included are paintings so skillfully rendered as to make water appear to flow and trees radiate with life. Minimal brushstrokes animate a bird and contrast a green praying mantis with the hue of autumn leaves.
Delicate wisps of fog materialize as if produced by natural forces. A featureless face, all but hidden beneath the sheer pitch of looming cliffs, reveals emotions with the cant of the head.
Unlike exhibits in which one stands back several paces to admire the paintings, Ancient Masters in Modern Styles: Chinese Ink Paintings from the 16th-21st Centuries invites viewers to draw near.
"Get close to the paintings," said Kathleen M. Ryor, curator for the exhibit, which will be on display through Dec. 16. "You'll see Chinese scholars of paintings get their face right up to it.
"That's how you see the brushwork, individual strokes, movement of the artist and the process. And it's amazing, because it's so minimal, and yet so much is achieved."
New York TimesCome Let Us Adore Him
Aug 09, 2012
...Mr. Boucher and Ms. Fiorani also deliver a masterpiece but supplement it with fresh research, probing questions and answers that try to tell us things that we (and they) didn't know. In short you get, through modest means, a big art experience: beauty, deepened by information, leading to contemplation. As I said, perfect.
Aug 06, 2012
July 31 — August 6, 2012
French novelist Roland Dorgelès wrote, "Émilie Charmy, it would appear, sees like a woman and paints like a man, from the one she takes grace and from the other strength, and this is what makes her such a strange and powerful painter who holds our attention." Remembered in part for her place in the early avant-garde movement, Charmy produced a body of work full of...full the body. Her sensuous, expressive portraits of the female form have remained objects of admiration....
Art Newspaper"A river runs through it: American painting, photography, and prints in the Civil War period"
Aug 01, 2012
No 237, July/August 2012
Like Caesar's Gaul, this exhibition is divided into three parts. The first is a display of paintings by Thomas Cole, Frederic Church, David Johnson, Standford Robinson Gifford, John Frederick Kensett and Aaron Draper Shattuck, all mainly New York-based, who composed the first and second (and final) generations of what art historians have name the Hudson River School.
GalleristNYMuseum of Biblical Art Hosts Newly Reconstructed 14th-Century Sienese Altarpiece
Jul 31, 2012
One of the must-see exhibitions of the summer is now on view at the Museum of Biblical Art ... "It's Bartolo's masterpiece," said Bruce Boucher, the director of the University of Virginia Art Museum, which first hosted the show and owns one of the predella panels. The other is loaned from the Lindenau-Museum in Altenburg, Germany.
C-villeEmilio Sanchez reveals beauty in unremarkable landscapes
Jun 26, 2012
Sunlight does peculiar things in the city. It overwhelms surfaces in ways it can't when there's more organic matter around to soak up the glare or scatter it into chaotic shadows. The portfolio of Cuban-American painter Emilio Sanchez contains a broad range of still life and natural scenes, but a collection featuring only his depictions of the built environment makes for a rewarding summer show at the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia.
YouTubeThe Fralin Museum of Art
May 31, 2012
Heywood Fralin (College '62) and his wife Cynthia talk about their gift to the newly named Fralin Museum of Art, and the Museum's importance to future study at the College.
The Roanoke TimesUVa names art museum for Roanoke benefactors
May 22, 2012
The couple responsible for providing Roanoke's Taubman Museum of Art with its collection of American paintings will have an art museum named after them in Charlottesville.
The name of the University of Virginia Art Museum will be changed to the Fralin Museum of Art to honor the donation of a 40-piece collection of American art by Roanoke philanthropists Heywood and Cynthia Fralin, UVa officials announced Monday. The Fralins' gift is the largest single gift of art in the university's history.
"We're really enamored with the idea of future students being able to study American artists ... on an up close and personal basis," Heywood Fralin said Monday.
Daily ProgressCouple to donate 40 artworks to UVa museum which will take their name
May 21, 2012
The University of Virginia has named its art museum after Board of Visitors member and former rector W. Heywood Fralin and his wife, Cynthia, after the Fralins announced the donation of their collection of American art to the university.
Newsplex.comUVa Art Museum Offering Lectures on Art Conservation
May 16, 2012
The University of Virginia Art Museum is allowing the public to get a behind the scene look into art conservation.
The lectures allows visitors to have a hands on experience with art pieces.
Newsplex.comFashion Shown to Benefit Local Museum and Public Television
May 07, 2012
A high-end fashion fundraiser is being held at the Main Street Arena Thursday, May 10, 2012.
The ice rink will be transformed into a runway for the Art in Heels event. Art in Heels is a benefit to help the University of Virginia Art Museum and local public television.
Top celebrity designers like Johnathan Kayne and Heidi Elnora from the show Project Runway will showcase their collection.
Newsplex.comPieces of 14th-Century Altarpiece Reunited at UVa Museum
Mar 01, 2012
Pieces of historic art have been reunited for the first time in hundreds of years, and you can see them at the University of Virginia Art Museum. On Thursday, the museum hosted a preview of "The Adoration of the Magi," a 14th-century Italian altarpiece painting by Bartolo di Fredi.
Completed around 1385, the altarpiece was dismantled and broken into four pieces at the turn of the 19th century. The painting stayed in Italy while accompanying panels were scattered in museums across the world.
One of the panels ended up at UVa, and now, for a short time, three of the four pieces will be on display together in the "The Adoration of the Magi" exhibit, which opens Friday and runs through May 27.
"It's a great opportunity for us to learn about altarpieces and why our particular panel fits into this larger work of art," said Bruce Boucher, director of the UVa Art Museum
C-villeUVA Art Museum reassembles a 14th century Italian masterpiece
Feb 28, 2012
A momentous reunion is happening at the University of Virginia. No, we're not talking about alumni returning to town to relive their glory days. This goes back much further than even Mr. Jefferson himself – all the way to 14th century Italy, when painter Bartolo di Fredi took up his brush to create an altarpiece for a church in his native city of Siena. As he applied his tempera and gold leaf, he surely didn't imagine that half a millenium* later parts of his painting would scatter across the globe, nor that they would be reunited for "The Adoration of the Magi by Bartolo di Fredi: A Masterpiece Reconstructed," an exhibition opening Friday at the UVA Art Museum.
Midea, Marucs Institute for Digital Education in the ArtsiPad apps, Part 3: Pleasures of the Kin-Aesthetic, Sculptural and Journalistic
Feb 14, 2012
"... In the last post, while praising MoMA's AbEx NY app for its stunning photography and excellent design, I confessed that the sculptures were less satisfying: the works themselves are often monochrome, and we want to pivot them, see them in 3D.
It took a little known art museum at the University of Virginia, working together with Jason Lawrence, an assistant professor at the same university and co-founder of the company Arqball, to present a convincing proof-of-concept for how 360° views like the ones we saw in The Elements might convey the magic of 3D objects in art museums' collections."
NBC 29UVA Art Museum to Reopen Friday
Feb 02, 2012
The doors at the University of Virginia Art Museum will reopen Friday with a few new quirks. The ground floor will be showcasing masterpieces and Renaissance era art.
Landscapes, 100 years of photography and 18th century porcelain will be featured on the upper level of the museum. In celebration of Valentine's Day, Japanese woodcuts from the 19th century will be on display.
C-villeUVA Art Museum's new run covers ground: Four shows, 500 years, and three mediums
Jan 31, 2012
The UVA Art Museum unveiled four new shows earlier this month that cover a breathtaking expanse of ground and make for an enjoyable afternoon of fine art. Curated by Paul Barolsky, Commonwealth Professor of Italian Renaissance Art and Literature, "Master Printmakers: The Italian Renaissance and its Modern Legacy" features engravings, woodcuts, and etchings by artists who made prints from the work of Renaissance masters like Raphael, Tintoretto, and Titian.
Daily ProgressUVA Art Museum opens four new exhibits
Jan 20, 2012
The dawn of abstract art in the early 20th century didn't mean sunset for traditional forms of art. Four new exhibitions opening today at the University of Virginia Art Museum show that there's room for plenty of different forms of self-expression under the sun.
IdeaPut 3D objects at your visitors’ fingertips: UVaM on the iPad
Nov 29, 2011
Hopi doll with painted headdress springs to life, spinning under my finger tips on a new iPad app from the University of Virginia Art Museum (UVaM).
The delightful app presents 19 different objects in 3D, to spin and zoom, providing an immediacy that rivals seeing an object in real life. In fact, it's better in many ways than peering at an object through a protective case because the objects can be spun through a full 360°, view under bright lighting, at high resolution.
UVA TodayUVA Art Museum Launches Free Interactive iPad App
Nov 28, 2011
In this week's UVA Today segment, Nicole Anastasi visited the Newsplex to introduce the University of Virginia Art Museum's new iPad app.
The HookMake it classy! How the Renaissance codified a style
Oct 27, 2011
Repeat after me: Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, Tuscan, and Composite - anyone who's taken high school Latin knows these are the five types of columns used in Roman architecture. Right? Wrong! As the University of Virginia Art Museum's current exhibition, "Variety, Archeology, and Ornament: Renaissance Architectural Prints from Column to Cornice," shows, Roman builders were much more imaginative than later architectural experts, like Palladio and Vignola, would have us believe.
New York ObserverJennifer Farrell Named Curator of Exhibitions at the University of Virginia Art Museum
Aug 30, 2011
The University of Virginia Art Museum has tapped scholar and curator Jennifer Farrell, who has a long history of working at institutions throughout New York and New England, to be its new curator of exhibitions. Ms. Farrell comes to the museum from the New York-based Nancy Graves Foundation, which maintains the archive of the late sculptor and painter Nancy Graves and makes grants to artists.
Before joining the Nancy Graves Foundation, Ms. Farrell served as a fellow and then assistant curator of prints, drawings and photography at the Yale University Art Gallery in in New Haven, Connecticut.
The HookGetting into shape: Printmakers color perceptions
Jun 27, 2011
"How to Steal like an Artist" is a humorous blog post by Texas-based artist Austin Kleon, full of down-to-earth advice for creative types. (Google it, if you're not reading this online where there's a hyperlink). Kleon writes that artists by nature constantly cop others' ideas and methods, adapting them for their own use. Examples of just such beneficent thievery are currently on view in the University of Virginia Art Museum's exhibition, New Images, New Techniques: Abstraction in British Screenprints circa 1970.
The seven artists included in the show not only appropriated silkscreen printing from the realm of industrial and commercial production, but they also snagged ideas from previous abstract artists as well as from each other. Drawn from the Museum's permanent collection, the works displayed reveal the dynamic interplay of ideas between artists working in close proximity, as they used the same medium to delve into relationships between shape and color on the page.
Piedmont Council for the Arts BlogPortraying the Golden Age at The Fralin Museum of Art
The Fralin Museum of Art presents a two-part exhibit in its Stair Hall Gallery titled Portraying the Golden Age. The exhibit is curated by John Hawley, Luzak-Lindner Graduate Fellow. In the first installation of Portraying the Golden Age, drawings from the Maida and George Abrams Collection reveal the blossoming of drawn portraiture in the Netherlands during the seventeenth century. The first installation will be on display through April 27.
Art DailyJasper Johns: Early Prints from the Collections of Jordan D Schnitzer" opens at the Fralin Museum of Art
Jasper Johns (b. 1930) has fundamentally challenged ideas about what art can be by focusing on everyday icons and emblems, or what the artist famously referred to as "things the mind already knows.” While perhaps best known for his paintings, Johns is also widely respected for his graphic work, which has occupied a central role in his oeuvre for over five decades. Johns’ prints not only show a mastery of the various mediums he has engaged, but also a profound sense of experimentation, which has had significant impact not only on his own art, but also on the field itself. Printmaking has allowed Johns to explore various methods for interpreting icons, emblems, and objects—such as numbers, letters, maps, targets, and ale cans—while also expanding the possibilities for printmaking. Several of his prints make reference to the artist’s work in other media, yet they are not mere copies or reproductions. Rather, Johns has consistently returned to such motifs in order to explore new methods and techniques that would allow him to reinterpret and engage these subjects again.
Art in AmericaPaint by Numbers: Suzanne McClelland
The weather is heavy in Suzanne McClelland's new paintings, where paint surges, lines whip and skid, and fragmentary letters and numbers collapse, inflate and slam into each other, hard. Words have a longstanding place in McClelland's work, often formed in a way that links their visible shape to their voiced sound, and to their origin in breath and body. Recently, the artist has shifted her attention from the link between spoken and written language to the juncture between letters and numbers. But as before, multitudes of ideas race through these images at speed. The works' range of social and cultural observation is matched by an extravagantly free dispersal of mediums across a variety of supports. Painting, pouring, dripping, splattering, writing and drawing, McClelland produces surfaces that are variously rococo, catastrophic, sparkly and black as dried blood.