Jackson Pollock. Mark Rothko. Robert Motherwell. Joan Mitchell. Arshile Gorky. Lee Krasner. Willem de Kooning. These are just a few of the legendary 20th-century artists whose artwork will be on view at the Art Gallery of Ontario
in summer 2011 when the Gallery welcomes Abstract Expressionist New York, an exhibition drawn from the collection of The Museum of Modern Art
(MoMA). The exhibition, on view from May 28 through September 4, 2011, features 100 key works by artists whose radical work changed the course of art history and catapulted New York City to the centre of the international art world.
MoMAs collection of abstract expressionist works is not only unparalleled, it is defining. To be the first international art museum to be given the opportunity to share the highlights of this collection is a tremendous honour, says Matthew Teitelbaum, the AGOs Michael and Sonja Koerner Director and CEO. From the wild abandon of Pollock to the distilled emotion of Rothko, this exhibition comprises a group of artists who responded to the seismic shifts of the 20th century with revolutionary innovation and visionary insight, changing the way we view art and, in turn, changing our world. We simply cannot wait to invite our visitors inside to view these essential and inspiring masterworks.
We are delighted to be able to share this exhibition with the Art Gallery of Ontario. The Museum of Modern Art has long and deep ties with the AGO, and I, of course, have a very personal one, and I can think of no better exhibition than Abstract Expressionist New York to reaffirm our admiration for what the AGO has achieved over the years, and especially since its reopening in 2008, says Glenn Lowry, Director of MoMA. These masterworks reflect MoMAs preeminent collection of abstract expressionism, and include not only the most important and well-known works, but also key works by lesser-known artists such as Norman Lewis and William Baziotes. Taken together they provide an extraordinary overview of abstract expressionism in New York and a unique insight into one of the most important American art movements of the 20th century.
Abstract Expressionist New York is drawn entirely from MoMAs collection of works by the pioneers of abstract expressionism, from its beginnings in the 1940s through its zenith in the 1950s and 1960s. The exhibition features works across a variety of mediums, including painting, sculpture, drawings, and photographs, including 12 era-defining works by Pollock, and multiple works by Rothko, Motherwell, de Kooning, Gorky, Barnett Newman, Louise Bourgeois, Philip Guston, Adolph Gottlieb, Franz Kline, David Smith, and others.