PHOENIX.- The first floor of the Katz Wing for Modern Art at Phoenix Art Museum has never looked better thanks to a dynamic new installation of more than 60 works of post-War and contemporary art. Works from the Museums collection are joined with several new acquisitions and spectacular loans from notable private collections, including the Ellen and Howard Katz Collection and the GUC Collection. This outstanding summer showcase, on view now through September, features striking assemblage pieces, brilliant color field paintings, cutting edge art from Latin America, selections of Abstract Expressionists and large-format photographs by artists from Europe and America.
Immediately upon entering the Marley Foundation Gallery visitors are struck by the large scale constructed paintings. Utilizing everyday objects for symbolic value, the pieces range from a simple gesture painting fused with a cane that celebrates the demise of Francisco Franco, by Spaniard Antoni Tapies, to a complex statement about race in America by Californian Raymond Saunders which utilizes a chalk board effect along with collaged photographs.
The color field gallery is anchored by five paintings by Helen Frankenthaler, a true pioneer and vanguard of the style. The paintings span Frankenthalers career and demonstrate her ability to produce sensuous colors that allow for an emotional experience. Additional color field paintings by Thomas Downing, Kenneth Noland, Morris Louis, Paul Reed and Arizonan Dorothy Fratt demonstrate the national popularity of color field painting.
Expanding on the modern Latin American art in the Museums Harnett Gallery, the summer installation demonstrates the breadth and range of contemporary Latin American art. The elegance of Madre e Hijo by Ricardo Martinez contrasts the boldly political statements of An Object at the Limits of Language by Enrique Chagoya and Do You Like Iraq by Oscar Oiwa. Other highlights are works by master colorist, Pedro Coronel and Francisco Corzas.
The Abstract Expressionism gallery offers visitors the chance to view the Museums great Willem de Kooning painting, one of many Museum favorites included in the exhibit. The de Kooning painting is complimented by an earlier work by Bay-area expressionist Paul Wonner, a new acquisition from the Joyce and Jay Cooper Collection, a subtle painting by Mark Rothko and works by Franz Kline and Philip Guston. Works by these artists as well as many others exemplify the depth of the contemporary art collection at Phoenix Art Museum.
The fifth component of the summer installation, the monumental photograph section, demonstrates the impact of recent acquisitions to the collection. Works by leading German photographers Candida Höfer and Thomas Struth hang opposite those by Richard Misrach and Gregory Crewdson, two of Americas leading artists working in large format photography.
The new galleries in the Katz Wing for Modern Art provide us with on-going opportunities to showcase our ever expanding collections, commented James Ballinger, The Sybil Harrington Director Phoenix Art Museum. In addition, having world-class gallery space encourages significant collectors to share their treasures with a broader audience, which is the purpose of the Museum.
The contemporary art installation in the Marley Foundation Gallery will be on display through September 30, 2008. Admission to the exhibition is included in general museum admission, which is $10 for adults, $8 for senior citizens (65+), $8 for full-time college students with ID, $4 for children ages 617 and free for children under 6 and for museum members. Admission is also free on Tuesdays from 3:00 p.m.9:00 p.m. and for everyone on First Fridays, 6:00 p.m. 10:00 p.m.
Phoenix Art Museum is located in downtown Phoenix at the corner of Central Avenue and McDowell Road. Museum hours are Tuesday, 10:00 a.m. 9:00 p.m. and Wednesday Sunday from 10:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m. The museum is closed on Mondays and major holidays.