Past Exhibition Galleries

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Desert to Delta

on view October 8th-January 6th

Desert to Delta at the Art Museum of the University of Memphis (AMUM) presents 20 artists and a video artist collective from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The exhibition opens with a public reception for visiting artists on Sunday, October 8, 3-6pm and continues through January 6, 2018.

Curated by AMUM, selected work ranges from seemingly traditional manuscript illumination to bold "calligraffiti," from bronze sculpture to sound and "scent" portraits, from cell-phone photography to multi-media installation. Saudi artists address issues that resonate throughout the world: environmental degradation, economic disparity, urban growth and loss of traditional culture, social inequality of women and minorities, and escalating tensions between and among ideologies. While these concerns may be universal, Saudi artists approach them through the lens of their country's unique history and forms of cultural expression. For example, Abdulnasser Gharam's "Camouflage," a giant mixed media painting depicts a military tank with an orange flower sprouting from its gun against the background of an opulently tiled Iranian mosque. Combining traditional Muslim arabesques and geometric designs and printed aphorisms, the artist addresses religious sectarianism and armed conflict among Islamic state and non-state actors all superimposed on a ground of 1000s of tiny rubber stamp elements, symbols of Saudi's bureaucratic regimentation. By contrast, the video collective Telfaz 11, hilariously confronts the disconnect between Saudis' traditions and their desire to participate contemporary international culture.

Desert to Delta is part of a United States program of Saudi contemporary art organized by the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture, a Saudi Aramco, and produced in collaboration with Culturunners, a UK-based platform for international artist exchange. Desert to Delta is one of ten separately curated exhibitions shown in 2016 through 2018 in Houston, Aspen, San Francisco, Lewiston, Maine, Los Angeles, Detroit, Salt Lake City, Memphis, Washington, D.C. and Brooklyn.

more here

Desert to Delta

The Quick and the Dead

The Quick and the Dead

The Quick and the Dead
Drawings and Obituaries by Chris Honeysuckle Ellis
August 18-September 23, 2017
Reception for the Artist, Sunday, August 27, 3:00-6:00
Artist's talk: 4:30

Chris Honeysuckle Ellis has lived in Los Angeles long enough for his native Frayser to have worn off, which it might have done sooner had he not clung to it so assiduously. He is an actor by profession and although he is no John Wilkes Booth, he has made his way amid the world's ruin these many years in California as a journeyman character actor in over 100 movies and TV doctor shows, lawyer shows and forensic shows. Being an actor, he spends most work days waiting for the phone to ring, and diverts the silence by slandering the dead one day at a time with frivolous caricatures and acidic drolleries on his Facebook page. Some of those caricatures are selected for the exhibition.

#thequickandthedead #quickandthedead

event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/489150578092301/

Stopping in Memphis

Gilding of Lily

(image caption)

Jill Wissmiller
"Gilding of Lily"
Digital Video Projected on a Glitter Screen

"Stopping in Memphis"
Curated by Dwayne Butcher

Featured Artists:

Justin Bowles
Alan Duckworth
Meredith Olinger
Alex Paulus
Esther Ruiz
Jared Small
Jill Wissmiller

#stoppinginmemphis

event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1388876231192168/

Learn about the artists and curator here

CASEWORKS

(left) DANCE MASK, Ecuador 20th Century Papier-mâché and pigment Gift attributed to Burton Hunter 2003.001.009 (right) JAGUAR MASK, Puebla, Mexico Enameled wood Art Museum purchase made possible by a Southern Arts Federation Grant 1984.004.025

The noble jaguar has been impersonated often in the pre-Columbian period and in modern times. This enameled mask is worn by a youth in a special dance in which the fearsome jaguar plagues the farm who must slay the jaguar in order to protect his field. He hunts the jaguar with the aid of a dog named Maravilla (Miracle).

more here

Survey 2: The Boundaries of Normal


Survey Two: The Boundaries of Normal

on view March 24th-April 29th, reception March 24th, 4:30-7:30pm

Learn more here

Who Runs the World

Who Runs the World

"Who Runs the World" AMUM celebrates Women's History Month

Women's History Month 2017 is asking, as Beyoncé does in her well-known song, 'who run the world'? Artists, while not usually seeking to run the world, have something original to say about it.

Learn more here

War in Words: The Art of Propaganda

Wars in Words: The Art of Propaganda curated by Lenora Bendall

Education teaches one how to think, while propaganda teaches one what to think. Information offers opportunities, while propaganda tells how we should use these opportunities. Propaganda narrows people's views, while education broadens them.

Learn more here

Masks

MASKS

masks case 1

(left) DANCE MASK, Ecuador 20th Century Papier-mâché and pigment Gift attributed to Burton Hunter 2003.001.009 (right) JAGUAR MASK, Puebla, Mexico Enameled wood Art Museum purchase made possible by a Southern Arts Federation Grant 1984.004.025

The noble jaguar has been impersonated often in the pre-Columbian period and in modern times. This enameled mask is worn by a youth in a special dance in which the fearsome jaguar plagues the farm who must slay the jaguar in order to protect his field. He hunts the jaguar with the aid of a dog named Maravilla (Miracle).

Learn more here

34th Annual juried Student Exhibition

34th Annual Juried Student Exhibition selected by Umar Rashid (Frohawk Two Feathers) more here

on view February 5th-March 11th, 2017

This May Surprise You

This May Surprise You

October 15-December 17, 2016

A 16th century illustrated book about the Aztec culture; a Samurai suit; an indigo wrap for a wealthy African woman; the self-portrait by a 19th century Memphis artist; an antique precursor of Japanese "manga"; a Mexican folk art "tigre" mask among a host of creature masks from around the world; two paintings by one of the greatest European modern masters; a tapestry by a beloved Memphis artist; the newly revealed Egyptian snake mummy; a royal chair from Cameroon; a 5th-6th century Egyptian textile with dancers, a fabulous Nigerian beaded priest's tunic...

Opening Reception: Friday, October 14, 4:30-7:00 pm

Flying Colors: Asafo Flags of the Fante

Flags are symbols of unity and belonging. They display one's allegiance to the world at a glance. The colors and motifs chosen for a flag also inform others about one's beliefs and values. more here

do it

do it is an exhibition conceived and curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist, and organized by Independent Curators International (ICI), New York. do it and the accompanying publication, do it: the compendium, were made possible, in part, by grants from the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation, the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, and with the generous support from Project Perpetual and ICI's International Forum and Board of Trustees. more here

Samuel Hester Crone

August 1 thru September 19, 2015

Samuel Hester Crone

 installation views

What I Kept

Penny Dodds Karwacz, curator

Jason N. Miller, photographer

February 26 – May 8, 2015, UofM Lambuth Campus, Varnell-Jones Hall (Opening reception Thursday, February 26, Wisdom Parlor, 5 to 7 PM)

March 14 – July 2, 2015 at AMUM/Opening reception Friday, March 20, 5-7:30 

What I Kept will display objects brought to Memphis and Jackson by international women from their countries of origin with personal stories about why they kept it. Celebrating the cultural diversity of our region and empowering the voice of women during women's history month, the exhibition will address ideas of material culture and tangible memory.

installation views

Beth Van Hoesen

Beth Van Hoesen

One of the most important artists/print-makers of her generation, this selection of Beth Van Hoesen's work (1926-2010) from AMUM's collection is distinctive for the quiet poignancy and compelling charm in studies and finished work of everyday objects, animals and people.

installation views

ArtLab: Pink Room/De Color de Rosa by Juan Rojo

"Pink Room /De Color de Rosa" is a multimedia installation of projected videos, wall painting, and printmaking. The main element of the exhibition is a multichannel projection of videos that depict women performing a Cinderella inspired routine.

installation views

CASEWORKS: Artifacts from AMUM's Permanent Collection

CASEWORKS

Pottery Water Jar or "Ula" (ca. 1920 - 1940), Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico, Coiled ceramic, slip-painted design, Mr. and Mrs. Berry B. Brooks Collection, 1984.1.200

Manufacturing pottery is a tradition that has been passed down through generations of the Acoma people. The pots are known for their very thin walls, beautiful geometric designs and black-white-red slip paintings. This jar features a traditional design and shape though its small size indicates that it may have been made for sale to tourists.

installation views

Juvenile-in-Justice: Photographs by Richard Ross

September 20th - November 26th

Photograph by Richard Ross, Juvenile In Justice
This exhibition courtesy of Richard Ross, www.juvenile-in-justice.com

On any given day, about 70,000 young people are in juvenile detention or correctional facilities. This multidisciplinary exhibition and project by photographer Richard Ross documents the placement and treatment of American juveniles housed by law in facilities that treat, confine, punish, assist, and occasionally, harm them. Ross has photographed and interviewed more than 1,000 juveniles at more than 200 facilities in 31 states. The work exists at the juncture of art, social practice and politics.

Installation Views

Perceptions of Me: A Project by Penny Dodds Karwacz

September 20th - November 26th

Perceptions of Me is an exhibition that gives voice to teenagers who are talked and written about, but rarely listened to, raising our awareness of how Memphis teens perceive themselves. This is a collaborative project organized by Penny Dodds working with several innovative Memphis organizations that provide positive social and creative environments for youth in our community: BRIDGES, storybooth at Crosstown Arts and Caritas Village.

Installation Views

Andy Warhol Portraits: Art and Irony

July 12th - September 13th

Andy Warhol Portraits: Art and Irony

In conjunction with Memphis Brooks Museum of Art's exhibition, Marisol: Sculptures and Works on Paper, AMUM presents selections from its collection of Andy Warhol portrait Polaroids, black and white photos and silkscreen prints. Marisol and Warhol were colleagues and Pop portraitists, he in painting, she in sculpture.

Installation Views

Culture and Resistance: a project by Leila Hamdan

Civil Rights Photography: Memphis 1968

July 12th - September 13th

James R. Reid, Blue-Eye Soul Brother (February 26, 1968). Special Collections, University of Memphis

The Civil Rights Movement generated an abundance of photographs documenting the African American fight for equality and economic, political and social justice. The images captured by local and national news outlets recorded this struggle and some have become iconic images representing a collective memory of the era. Curated by Leila I. Hamdan from the UM Libraries Special Collections, these photographs illustrate a new view of the struggle in Memphis.

Installation Views

Disappearing Ink

a project by John Salvest

April 5th - June 28th, 2014

Disappearing Ink

An exhibition of printed ephemera recording our stories, history and cultural memory. Print media is disappearing and being replaced by ever mutating digital media. For more than 200 years news media have documented our histories. How will we capture our memories in 2050?

This project made possible by the Student Activity Fee Fund.

Installation Views

Bauhaus twenty-21: An Ongoing Legacy – Photographs by Gordon Watkinson

September 21st, 2013 - January 4th, 2014

Conceived as a multidisciplinary project encompassing architecture, design, and photography, Bauhaus twenty-21 not only conveys the architectural history, but also illustrates the enduring philosophies of the Bauhaus. The exhibition, by creating a visual as well as theoretical dialogue between the timeless modernism of Bauhaus architecture and the visions of contemporary practitioners, offers a unique perspective on Bauhaus design philosophy as it relates to architecture and its relevance in today's society.

Bauhaus Building, Walter Gropius, 1925-26, Dessau, Germany © Gordon Watkinson

Installation Views

In His Studio: Carroll Cloar

June 8 – September 7, 2013

After traveling the world seeking inspiration, Carroll Cloar realized that he wanted to return and draw inspiration from the place he loved—the South. It was home.

AMUM's exhibition "In His Studio: Carroll Cloar" features some of the artist's earliest work, his reconstructed studio, drawings, sketches and photographs. Cloar's writings inform the exhibition labels and provide a glimpse into his working methods and recollections.

Installation Views

Time Pools: Accessing the Aquifer The League of Imaginary Scientists in collaboration with The University of Memphis

April 6th - May 24th, 2013 

Time Pools: Accessing the Aquifer is a cross-disciplinary collaboration between Jason Miller's Digital Art class and The League of Imaginary Scientists, a group of science-minded artists. Additional project contributors include Michelle Dry and Dr. Scott Schoefernacker from the University of Memphis Ground Water Institute and software developer Silvester Kozajda. The purpose of the project, like many of the League's endeavors, is to explore scientific material through art and infuse both with a sense of play.

120,000 years ago, during an age of Saber-Tooth Tigers and Wooly Mammoths, rain poured down on Memphis and soaked into the soil.

Installation Views

Hot Cold Cool

September 22th - January 5th

Hot Cold Cool

Hot Cold Cool presents late 20th century art from four fine art print portfolios in AMUM's collection. "Ten Works by Ten Artists" published in 1964 includes silkscreens by iconic American Minimalist and Pop artists. By contrast, the portfolio "American Artists and Writers Protest the War in Vietnam" of 1967 expresses furious political antagonism. "Ten Lithographs by Ten Artists" produced in 1971 represents a return to figurative and expressive imagery in America. The 1973 World Print portfolio demonstrates the liveliness of the artistic interchange among nations during the Cold War era.

Installation Views

By the Fire of Satire: Russian Propaganda Prints

September 22th - November 21st

The genre of satirical posters, an important tool of the Soviet government, ridiculed corruption, waste, inefficiency, and abuse attempting to shame individuals into improvement. Agriculture, considered the most wasteful branch of the Soviet economy and the Achilles heel of the former Soviet Union, was the topic for many of the posters in this portfolio.

Installation Views

Alma Mater: University of Memphis

June 16th - September 15th

"What do you think the University could be?" That was the question artists Sheryl Oring and Dhanraj Emanuel asked students of The University of Memphis for the 100 year centennial celebration. Funded by The Student Activity Fee Fund.

Installation Views

Memories: Richard Knowles and Steve Langdon

October 8th, 2011 - January 7th, 2012

Memories celebrated the life and work of both professors and artists. It showed more than 20 of Knowles' large-scale abstract paintings, including work from the Swimmers, Southwest, and Forest series, and about 30 of Langdon's small, carefully rendered ink and pencil drawings from five series, including Ritual Surgery, Cats in Trouble, Fireworks, Baseball Gloves, and Angels.

Commemorative Page

Memphis Heavyweight: Collaboration with Nick Cave

July 18th - September 28th, 2011

Memphis Heavyweight was a project organized by AMUM that brought Chicago artist Nick Cave to Memphis. Cave worked in collaboration with University students and faculty, and the Memphis community at large, to create a parade that occurred on April 21, 2011. The exhibition featured video footage and photographs along with costumes, floats, and other artifacts from the parade.

Event Coverage Here

Paul Revere Williams, American Architect

October 2010 - January 2011

Paul Revere Williams, American Architect was the first museum exhibition of the prolific and acclaimed 20th century designer's work.The exhibition featured 200 new photographs presented as photographic essays, that profiled the development of his career by decade. Additionally, slide shows of found photographs and text were used to shed light on various aspects of both his personal and professional life.

Official Site

Art Is My Natural World: Alison Weld, 1980 - 2009

March 6th - April 17th, 2010

A survey of the past two decades of work by New York abstract painter Alison Weld. Weld typically pairs her aggressive approach to abstraction with swatches of commercially printed patterns to comment on a host of issues and personal concerns.

Exhibition Catalog / Installation Views
 

Greely Myatt and Exactly Twenty Years

September - November 2009

A mid-career retrospective consisting of approximately twenty years of work by Memphis sculptor and University of Memphis professor, Greely Myatt. Myatt's work combines art historical reference with the vernacular influence of the South to create various narrative possibilities.

Installation Views