Through September 21, 2008
Samuel M. V. Hamilton Building, Fisher Brooks Gallery and Walter & Leonore Annenberg Gallery
This exhibition represents an unusual opportunity to see a large portion of a corporate collection in one place. Organized by PAFA in a fruitful collaboration with Bank of America’s Art Exhibition Program, this exhibition presents over 80 highlights from one of the finest corporate collections in the world.
Installed in two large galleries of the Academy’s Samuel M. V. Hamilton Building, the exhibition features major works by artists such as Milton Avery, Jennifer Bartlett, Roger Brown, John Chamberlain, Janet Fish, Sam Francis, Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, Donald Judd, John Marin, Elizabeth Murray, Louise Nevelson, Jules Olitski, Faith Ringgold, Ed Ruscha, Miriam Shapiro, Lorna Simpson, and Frank Stella.
Organized around a theme that underscores Bank of America’s community outreach philosophy as well as strengths of its postwar collection, the exhibition takes “reverberations” as a departure point. Among historically significant works in the collection are objects that focus on intense color and geometry as an organizing principle. This structural approach was rampant during the 1960s, uniting artists of disparate styles and approaches. Often associated with Minimalism or the colloquial “color field” painting, the practice of refining and reducing, peeling away and purifying the formal elements of artwork also affected realist painting and Pop art.
A broad selection of artists representing a wide range of philosophical viewpoints and chronology enlivens and links the first and second floor galleries. The enormous Fisher Brooks Gallery will be the site of monumental works such as Frank Stella’s Damascus Gate II (1968) and Jennifer Bartlett’s multi-panel installation Swimmers (1978).
Upstairs, in the Annenberg Gallery, viewers will be treated to more intimate works on paper, including a large selection of black, gray and white drawings as well as vintage black and white photographs (by Harry Callahan and Aaron Siskind) to contrast with the explosive color in the first floor installation. Here the exhibition extends back into the early part of the twentieth-century to show antecedents and models for sharp color. Works on paper by Stanton MacDonald-Wright and John Marin establish this trajectory
Bank of America’s trust and generosity have allowed this exhibition to grow from a straightforward collaboration to an extraordinary opportunity to bring together major works by some of the strongest and most resonant artists of the last forty years in a dynamic dialogue that will surprise and delight viewers.
Robert Cozzolino, Curator of Modern Art