September 19, 2014 |
THAT BEAUTIFUL woman prowling around the junk yard, what could she be looking for? Or rooting in trash bins. Or just ransacking the urban environment for the castoffs of a reckless society. It would have been the artist Dina Wind, looking for discarded objects that she could fashion into the installations that made her one of Philadelphia's more interesting artists. She took old car fenders and other auto castoffs, as well as tools - hammers, saws, pliers, shears and the like - and welded them into shapes and contours that the motorists who once drove the cars and the workers who once wielded the tools wouldn't have recognized.
June 10, 2013 |
Can you imagine a major exhibition for the celebrated French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec that doesn't contain a single painting? One just opened at the Allentown Art Museum, of about 150 lithographs and drawings from the most productive decade of his tragically truncated career. Lautrec made more than 700 oil paintings, yet the essence of his distinctive talent is most effectively conveyed through his graphic work and his drawings. He was a superbly intuitive draftsman blessed with an uncanny ability to suggest character and capture energetic movement, particularly dance, with just a few well-placed strokes.
July 29, 2012 |
Any art museum that desires to attract adolescent males (that is, males up to the age of about 25) might follow the lead of the Allentown Art Museum and stage an exhibition like "At the Edge: Art of the Fantastic. " In a catalog statement, the museum's president and chief executive officer, J. Brooks Joyner, calls this extensive display of fantasy art "the first of its kind and scale to be undertaken by a museum of fine arts in America. " I can believe it, because art museums traditionally consider art of this kind to be beyond the pale - overtly commercial, lurid, and devoid of serious aesthetic character.
June 30, 2012 |
Passing the Barnes Foundation's sprawling new parking lot one recent afternoon, I was surprised to see half the spaces were empty. By evening, however, the joint was jumping, the lot was full, and many female visitors were wearing skyscraper heels, rather than the sensible flats of the serious museumgoer. That's when it hit me that the real motive for cramming the lot onto the Barnes' tiny site was to help the gallery promote itself as a party venue. The Barnes is not alone in chasing after the lucrative events business.
February 26, 2012 |
Rock-and-roll music embodies the spirit of several generations, which is to say raucous and sometimes transgressive behavior by both musicians and their fans, idol worship and mass hysteria. These effects have been observed before, particularly in young people - remember crooners and bobby-soxers? - but rock-and-roll has been an especially persistent and powerful shaper of popular culture. Why else would public television still be reviving musical acts from the 1960s to solicit contributions during periodic fund drives?
January 29, 2012 |
The most exciting art season in years is upon us, with the opening this weekend at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts of a major survey of Henry Ossawa Tanner's landmark career and an exhibition of Vincent van Gogh's nature paintings just around the corner at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The Art Museum will follow van Gogh with another monumental subject: how three artistic giants - Paul Cezanne, Henri Matisse, and Paul Gauguin -...
November 13, 2011 |
After being closed for nearly a year, the Allentown Art Museum is back in business in a larger, more visitor-friendly building. While less than half the 7,900 square feet added in the expansion and renovation is devoted to exhibiting art, the reconfigured museum now displays its collection more effectively, while adding a gallery for special exhibitions, The redesign is more functional than spectacular. Philadelphia architects Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates captured the extra space by pushing the front of the museum out to the sidewalk and by enclosing a rear patio formerly used to display sculpture.
July 29, 2011 |
There's now a familiar resonance about the comfortable way artists from across the commonwealth come together annually to participate in Harrisburg's "Art of the State" displays. This year's 44th juried exhibition - widely recognized as the official statewide competition for Pennsylvania artists - features 135 works by 133 artists from 35 counties, chosen from 1,933 entries submitted by 727 artists. Its location is the official State Museum of Pennsylvania, which has 4.5 million objects in its collections, and 100,000 square feet of permanent and temporary exhibition space in a doughnut-shaped building next to the State Capitol.
August 6, 2010
Antiques/Art/Crafts Ab n' Jacks All-Betterfest VI Live music featuring 10 bands, arts & crafts vendors, food & camping. 856-287-5001. Snipes Farm & Golf, 890 W. Bridge St., Morrisville. abnjacks.com. $20 advance; $25 day of event; free for children under 12. 8/7. In Stitches: Quilts From the Allentown Art Museum Allentown Art Museum, 31 N. Fifth St., Allentown; 610-432-4333. Regular admission plus $7. 8/6. RNS Show House at the Shore: Windsong on Wesley Annual exhibition of interior design rooms featuring decorative painting & outdoor living spaces.