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The Art of Medicine

Dec 17, 2014

A new program at UVA's Fralin Museum of Art helps teach medical students diagnostic skills through artistic analysis. Jordan Love, Academic Curator of the museum, joins us to chat about the "Clinician's Eye" program.

Watch the interview

Inspired by Paul Klee’s statement of “a line is a dot that went for a walk,” “What Is A Line?,” the Fralin Museum of Art’s newest exhibition, is scheduled to open next year, and will continue the museum’s long tradition of multicultural pieces — this time by examining a particular artistic technique. As described by Lauren Patton, the Fralin’s docent coordinator, “What Is A Line?” is grounded in one of the most basic elements of art: the line. The exhibition aims to examine how the line manifests itself in a vast array of art. The stylistic orientation of “What Is A Line?” certainly distinguishes it from other Fralin exhibitions. While some displays, such as “On the Fly,” focus on the works of specific artists, others, like “Realms of Earth and Sky,” are spatially exclusive. But by concentrating on such a bare essential of art, “What Is A Line?” evades cultural, personal and temporal boundaries.

The Cavalier Daily

University furthers commitment to arts

Nov 20, 2014

The University is increasing investment in arts around Grounds in an attempt to make art more relevant to the University student experience. The Campaign for the University of Virginia has raised $170 million for arts priorities, $38 million of which has gone toward the expansion, renovation and construction of buildings on the Arts Grounds. The remaining funds are helping to finance community engagement initiatives and art residencies, as well as exhibitions and educational programs at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University. The Fralin is one of the primary means through which the University engages students in the arts. Fralin Director Bruce Boucher said more than 2,000 students become members of the museum each year, a fivefold increase since 2009.

The Fralin Museum of Art has invited visitors to the Museum’s website to select works that will be shown in the summer 2015 exhibition What is a Line? derived from the Fralin’s collection. Participants have the opportunity to continue voting each week until mid-December. The most popular choices will be included in the exhibition. As stated in its press release, the exhibition aims to inspire thought about the Museum’s collection of modern and contemporary works on paper, the diversity of the ways in which lines, the most basic element of art, have been engaged by artists, and the different experiences of engaging with art online and in person contemplation of pieces in the museum. The Fralin selects a different group of works each week and voters choose from those pieces what they wish to see in the exhibition this summer.

"The Lyrical Line," which is on display for four months at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, features work from two of the most innovative printmakers of the early 20th century: Stanley William Hayter and Jacques Villon. "Imagine thousands of lines engraved in metal make up a print, and they all make up a reality," said Steve Margulies, the volunteer curator in charge of the exhibition, as he studied a Villon. "To me, this is like modern science, quantum theory. And [Villon and Hayter] were into that. Both of them." The prints were painstakingly selected from the University’s collection by Margulies—erudite, kind, he moves through the exhibition like an affectionate parent, examining the carefully hung prints as if they were his children.

“Harlem Gang Leader” introduced Gordon Parks to America. LIFE magazine, which published the photo essay in its Nov. 1, 1948, issue, had every reason to be proud of the man it called “a young Negro photographer.” He had, it said, spent “four hectic weeks” exploring the world of Red Jackson, the 17-year-old leader of the Midtowners, a gang in Harlem, making hundreds of photographs. Most of the 21 pictures that LIFE’s editors chose for the story evoked the deep shadows and pervasive anxiety of classic film noir. Parks’ field notes provided the raw material for a narrative that mirrored the photographs’ sense of foreboding. The photo essay, while largely compassionate, ultimately depicted Jackson’s existence as one that was shaped by senseless violence and thwarted dreams.

In a 1948 issue of Life magazine, a photo essay entitled "Harlem Gang Leader" introduced Gordon Parks to the world. Although Parks had been a professional photographer for nearly a decade, his name was virtually unknown, something he shared with the vast majority of professional photographers at that time. But his byline in Life – by far the most widely read news and photo magazine in America – changed all that. Opening Friday at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia and running through Dec. 21, Gordon Parks: The Making of an Argument explores the untold story behind the photo essay that introduced one of the 20th century’s most important African-American photographers, filmmakers and writers to the American public.

The Cavalier Daily

The Art of Medicine

Sep 07, 2014

"Art doesn’t only serve one purpose," said Jordan Love, the Academic Curator of the University’s Fralin Art Museum. This much was clear to both Love and Assoc. Medical Education Prof. Dr. Marcia Day Childress when they collaborated with University alumnae Louisa Howard and Emma Murphy to create the Clinician’s Eye Program. This innovative learning technique, based on similar programs at Harvard and Yale, hones medical students’ diagnostic skills through artistic analysis. Barely a year old, the class is held at the Fralin, where groups of about 12 medical students spend time discussing selected works of art. "Visual analysis can be harnessed to improve medical school students' diagnostic and observational abilities," Love said. "Clinician’s Eye is a fun way of using art to do that."

A new exhibit at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia offers a unique entry into the world of early modern India through an array of colorful paintings. Realms of Earth and Sky: Indian Paintings from the 15th to the 19th Century, on view through Dec. 14, includes several artistic traditions that range across the span of centuries.

UVA's Fralin Museum of Art Curator of Exhibitions Jennifer Farrell and Education intern and docent Pia von Barby discuss the summer Postwar British Prints exhibit and happenings at the Fralin with Soundboard's Robert Packard and Lewis Reining.

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Was Joseph Cornell a surrealist? He has been described as a "lone star within the surrealist constellation," a turn of phrase that might have pleased the avid stargazer of Flushing, New York, but one that leaves an incomplete picture of Cornell the artist.The Fralin Museum of Art recently posed this question with a finely focused exhibition in which Cornell’s work appeared alongside that of Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, René Magritte, Man Ray, Mina Loy, Salvador Dalí, Yves Tanguy, among others. In a way, this show, which closed at the beginning of June, recreated the 1932 lineup seen at Julien Levy’s gallery, when Cornell's work first appeared. But Cornell was uneasy about this association, and later wrote to Alfred Barr before MOMA's 1936 show "Fantastic Art, Dada, Surrealism": "In the event that you are saying a word or two about my work in the catalogue, I would appreciate your saying that I do not share in the subconscious and dream theories of the surrealists. While fervently admiring much of their work I have never been an official surrealist, and I believe that surrealism has healthier possibilities than have been developed." Without a doubt, Cornell’s pervasive nostalgia and penchant for hoarding have Freudian connotations, but it is remarkable that he would see in the surrealists’ obsession the subconscious signs of mental imbalance.

Washington Post

UVa president emeritus to chair museum board

May 07, 2014

The University of Virginia’s Fralin Museum of Art has new leadership. The museum announced Tuesday that John Casteen, president emeritus of the university, will chair the museum’s advisory board. He will be joined on the board by his wife, Betsy.

The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia has announced that John T. Casteen III, president emeritus of the University of Virginia, and his wife, Betsy, have agreed to join the museum’s advisory board. Casteen will serve as chair.

The University of Virginia Magazine

Seeing the Everyday in a Different Way

May 01, 2014

Contemporary American artist Jasper Johns, now 83, creates art that puts a different spin on familiar, everyday objects—what he has called "things the mind already knows." An exhibit titled "Jasper Johns: Early Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation" will run through May 17 at the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia

The Cavalier Daily

Fralin hosts surreal Joseph Cornell exhibit

Apr 21, 2014

Coming to the University from its previous display in Lyon, France, "Joseph Cornell and Surrealism" is currently on display at the Fralin Museum. Curated by Matthew Affron and Sylvie Ramond, the exhibition places modern artist Cornell in context with the surrealist movement and his peers, featuring almost 100 works from renowned artists such as Salvador Dali, Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray and, of course, Cornell himself This exhibition explores surrealism from the 1930s and 1940s and its focus on the mind. With the prefix "sur" meaning above, surreal therefore means "above the real," causing many to view the form as both captivating and disturbing for its focus on subverting and building strangely on reality. This manipulation of reality stems from the artists' aim "to express the activity of the unconscious or dreaming mind," as described in the exhibition pamphlet.

University of Virginia School of Nursing

the HeArt of Medicine: Program buoys students' understanding of death and dying

Apr 10, 2014

How can one's personal history, family background, religion, art and coursework inform nursing and medical students' ability to navigate the waters of end-of-life care? In late February, 250 medical and nursing students gathered to focus on just that. The new program, called the HeArt of Medicine, seeks to help students understand their own feelings on death and dying, as well as the physiology of dying and how to navigate the difficult conversations that arise with patients and their loved ones surrounding end-of-life care. To do this, 125 students attended one of two workshops. Each three-hour workshop began with a large group presentation led by Jim Avery, MD, executive director of Hospice of the Piedmont, who outlined the physiological side of death and dying. Students then broke out into small groups (pictured with nursing prof. Jeanne Erickson, at right) to explore and discuss examples of art and other topics related to death and dying, seeking to embrace and explore the emotional side of end-of-life issues experienced by everyone, including doctors and nurses. The larger group then reconvened to debrief and discuss the challenges of end-of-life conversations with patients and their families.

A rich and deeply satisfying show, "Joseph Cornell and Surrealism" at the Fralin Museum explores Cornell's work in the context of the Surrealist movement of the 1930s and '40s. Prior to seeing it, I had the common, yet incorrect impression, that Cornell was a hermit-like creature akin to Henry Darger who created his work in a self-imposed vacuum.

Scholar Stephen Margulies will give a Saturday Special Tour and talk at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia on March 29 from 2 to 3 p.m. Margulies’ talk, “The Cowboy in Art: The Good, the Bad, and the Funny” is planned in partnership with the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library and the National Endowment for the Arts’ annual “Big Read,” designed to revitalize the role of literary reading in American popular culture.

Exhibition curator Jennifer Farrell will give a Lunchtime Talk at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, on the “Jasper Johns: Early Prints from the Collection of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation” exhibit March 18, from noon to 1 p.m. Johns, who was born in 1930, has 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 more than five decades. His prints not only show a mastery of various mediums, but a profound sense of experimentation, which has had significant impact not only on his own art, but also on the field itself. \

“Joseph Cornell and Surrealism” focuses on the work of the American artist Joseph Cornell (1903, Nyack, NY – 1972, New York, NY) in the 1930s and the 1940s. These years span both Cornell’s emergence and maturation as a visual artist and the heyday in New York of surrealism, the international art movement founded by André Breton in Paris in 1924. This international loan exhibition is a collaboration of the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon and The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia. Following a run in Lyon (Oct. 18, 2013 – Feb. 10, 2014), the exhibition opens at The Fralin on Mar. 7 and will remain on view through June 8, 2014

More than a half-century before there was Pinterest or any of the online applications devoted to the art of virtual collage, American artist Joseph Cornell was busy creating his own real assemblage works by hand. With snippets of magazines, pasted photographs and found objects, the universe of Cornell’s imagination was realized in meticulously composed masterworks born of everyday material. “Joseph Cornell and Surrealism” – an international loan exhibition created in a collaborative effort between the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, a municipal museum of fine arts in the French city of Lyon, and The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia – opens Friday at the The Fralin Museum of Art, and will remain on view through June 8.

Now in his eighties, America’s greatest living artist, Jasper Johns, is still recognized as the vanguard who ignored convention to create a new, galvanizing style that brilliantly reflected the spirit and mores of its time. Johns’ far-reaching influence can be discerned in Pop Art, minimalism, and conceptual art movements and it continues to resound in contemporary art today. Though he is best known for his paintings and his bronze Ballantine Ale cans, Johns is also considered a master printmaker with a body of work that shows his total command of the various media within the field of printmaking. “Jasper Johns: Early Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation” at UVA’s Fralin museum (through May 19) offers a rare opportunity to view a selection of these graphic works.

Piedmont Council for the Arts Blog

Weedon Lecture at The Fralin Museum of Art

Feb 26, 2014

With the generous support of the Ellen Bayard Weedon Foundation, the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia presents four lectures on South and East Asian art each year. The next lecture in the series is “Twanging Bows and Throwing Rice: Warding Off Evil in Medieval Japanese Birth Scenes” by Yui Suzuki, Associate Professor of Art History, University of Maryland, on Thursday, February 27. The lecture will begin at 6:00pm in Campbell Hall’s Room 153.

Chicago Sun-Times

Arts Preview: Émilie Charmy

Feb 25, 2014

In art, the “new” is usually the work of a young gun just beginning to establish a reputation. But occasionally, the past still offers up an artist whose imagery hasn’t been emblazoned on items in the museum gift shop, or been maxed out by Madison Avenue. Take Émilie Charmy. Born in 1878 and active into her 90s, this French painter did not invent a new vocabulary or deploy color in a strikingly unusual manner. The old standards — still life, portraits, landscape and genre scenes — were her stock-in-trade. Yet she exercised the true artist’s prerogative: to paint what she wanted the way she wanted. From Feb. 27 through May 17, the Arts Club of Chicago presents the first U.S. retrospective of her work.

Initially curated by Matthew Affron for the University of Virginia’s Fralin Museum of Art, the exhibition enables one not only to experience the individual sophistication of Charmy’s visual strategies, but also to reconsider the status of the female painter in the early 20th century. “She belonged to a generation of women who reformulated notions of gender and art at the same time,” says Affron, now a curator of modern art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. “And the study of an artist who is not well-known is as interesting for what we learn about the conditions of art-making, the nature of the art market and evolving interests in the art world — not least for women artists — as it is fascinating in terms of rediscovering the paintings themselves.”

The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia will host Yui Suzuki for an Ellen Bayard Weedon Lecture in the Arts of Asia on Feb. 27. Her lecture, “Twanging Bows and Throwing Rice: Warding Off Evil in Medieval Japanese Birth Scenes,” will be held at 6 p.m. in Campbell Hall, room 153. Although a transformational life experience, childbirth has not received much focused attention in art history. In medieval Japan, birthing scenes were often inserted into medieval picture scrolls (called “emaki”) to evoke the larger Buddhist notion of suffering. Despite the long-established practice of medicine in Japan, childbirth pictures reveal that the upper echelons of society relied heavily on multifarious networks of ritual specialists and their magico-religious rites. In her talk, Suzuki will examine images of the diverse performances by religious professionals and the reasons why such elaborate measures were taken to ensure the safety of mother and child.

Families are invited to an afternoon of fun and hands-on creativity as The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia continues its monthly children’s program, the Family Art JAM. On Feb. 15 and 16, the museum will offer four sessions of “Letters and Numbers: Printmaking Inspired by Jasper Johns” for children ages 5 to 12. Family Art JAMs combine age-appropriate tours with hands-on art projects planned to make the museum's exhibitions accessible to young children.

The Fralin Museum's Curator for Contemporary Art Jennnifer Farrell speaks with 91.1 WTJU Soundboard Producer Julia Kudravetz about the early prints of Jasper Johns on display.

Listen to the interview

I know it’s probably been a while since you memorized vocabulary for the SATs, but here’s a word too fun to ignore: tronie. Neither a troll mixed with a pony nor a misspelled version of “phony,” “tronie” is 17th century Dutch for “face,” also referring to a style of artwork which focuses on people’s faces and emotions. Intrigued? You’re in luck — the Fralin Museum of Art is displaying a collection of 17th century Dutch tronies from now until August.

The UVa. Fralin Museum of Art announces the winners of Writers Eye 2013. The Writer’s Eye program challenges writers of all ages to use visual art as inspiration for the creation of original poetry and prose. Entrants submitted original writings inspired by one of 18 pieces selected for the competition from the museum’s permanent collection and visiting exhibitions. After conducting tours for more than 3,600 students and adults, the museum received more than 1,500 entries to the competition from writers in the Charlottesville and University communities.

Print is everywhere — it spells out the Bodo’s menu board, constitutes the reading assignments spat out by HP Deskjets everywhere and fills the pages of The Cavalier Daily print editions appearing in distribution boxes every Monday and Thursday. Few people give the process of printmaking much attention because of its ubiquity. Few people, that is, besides Jasper Johns. Johns, born in Georgia and raised in South Carolina, began exploring his interest in symbols, images and icons after settling in New York in the 1950s. Expressing himself primarily through lithography and painting, Johns played an integral role in the Neo-Dada and Pop Art movements of the late 20th century.

The UVa. Fralin Museum of Art announces the winners of Writers Eye 2013. The Writer’s Eye program challenges writers of all ages to use visual art as inspiration for the creation of original poetry and prose. Contestants submitted original writings inspired by one of 18 pieces selected for the competition from the museum’s permanent collection and visiting exhibitions. After conducting tours for more 3,600 students and adults, the museum received more than 1,500 entries to the competition.

Art during the Dutch Golden Age, which spanned the late 16th and 17th centuries, gave portraiture a place of great prominence.

While young painters in the Netherlands primarily focused on portraiture, there were many other artists, mostly draftsmen and printmakers, whose works could be bought for comparatively lower prices than their painted counterparts.

To trace the blossoming of this drawn portraiture in the Netherlands during the 17th century, The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia presents Portraying the Golden Age, the first of a two-part installation running from Jan. 17 through April 27.

Three newly awarded National Endowment for the Arts grants will help the University of Virginia build its momentum in advancing and supporting the creative arts.

NEA Art Works grants have been given to the Virginia Quarterly Review, The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia and a collaborative multimedia project between poet Rita Dove and the McIntire Department of Music.

“When I grab a stick, I get a bunch of good ideas. I feel alive,” said University of Virginia artist-in-residence Patrick Dougherty in his documentary, “Bending Sticks.”

Dougherty—the guest of The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, the McIntire Department of Art and the Office of the Vice Provost for the Arts—spent three weeks working with students and community volunteers installing his “stickwork sculpture” exhibit in front of the Ruth Caplin Theatre on the Betsy and John Casteen Arts Grounds.

The Frick’s Center for the History of Collecting has awarded its Sotheby’s Book Prize for a Distinguished Publication on the History of Collecting in America to Get There First, Decide Promptly: The Richard Brown Baker Collection of Postwar Art (Yale University Art Gallery, 2011). The book’s general editor, Jennifer Farrell, shares the prize with essayists Thomas Crow, Serge Guilbaut, Jan Howard, Robert Storr, and Judith Tannenbaum. The Frick’s Director, Ian Wardropper, commented, “Within recent years, the history of collecting art has found acceptance as an academic field, and we are very proud of the role that the Center for the History of Collecting has played in that development. Established at the Frick Art Reference Library six years ago, the center has fostered a high level of discourse through symposia, oral histories, publications, and fellowships. Furthermore, its book prize, generously supported by Sotheby’s, strengthens this area of study by acknowledging—and perhaps inspiring—new publications. We offer congratulations to Jennifer Farrell and her colleagues for this wonderfully researched publication and look forward to presenting the award to her formally at a reception hosted at Sotheby’s in January.”

Piedmont Council for the Arts Blog

Symposium Explores Experiences of African Americans in Soviet Union

Oct 21, 2013

“In the Shadow of Stalin: African American Artists and Intellectuals in Soviet Russia” will examine the diverse experiences of African Americans who both visited and immigrated to the Soviet Union during the first half of the twentieth century.

“In the Shadow of Stalin: The Patterson Family in Painting and Film,” an exhibit at The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia running through Dec. 22, examines a 1932 journey by Langston Hughes and several of his African-American peers to the Soviet Union.

The Daily Progress

Artist Patrick Doughtery Creates Stickworks At UVa

Oct 21, 2013

Students and community members gave a hand to artist Patrick Doughtery and his creation of a Stickworks installation Wednesday on the lawn of the Betsy and John Casteen Arts Grounds at the University of Virginia. The installation involves weaving of tree saplings and sticks into towering nest-like sculptures. The project is expected to be completed October 18th and will remain on grounds for more than a year.

If you’ve been in the vicinity of the Ruth Caplin Theatre and the Arts Commons at UVA, you’ve no doubt noticed some unusual activity in the bowl-shaped area between the buildings. Renowned installation artist Patrick Dougherty, together with a group of community and UVA volunteers, is hard at work weaving a sculpture made from locally harvested twigs and saplings collected by Dougherty, in a collaboration with UVA sculpture professor, Bill Bennett, and his class.