Félix Fénéon (1861 - 1944)
The Musée d’Orsay, the Musée de l’Orangerie, the musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac and The Museum of Modern Art, New York, pay tribute to Félix Fénéon (1861-1944), an important figure in the artistic world in the late 19th and early 20th century. Anarchist, art critic, editor, gallery director and collector, Fénéon espoused an open-minded vision of creation at a time when art was on the verge of the shift to modernity and strove for the recognition of non-western arts. If you don't have the chance to come to Paris to visit the exhibition, become acquainted with this remarkable man through an interview with curators Isabelle Cahn and Philippe Peltier published in the Summer Issue of Tribal Art magazine. It is now available from Tribal Art magazine web site. On view at musée du Quai Branly - Jacques Chirac until September 29, 2019.
The Charles and Valerie Diker Collection
This autumn, two exhibitions of traditional arts from opposite sides of the world will open at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The first is Art of Native America: The Charles and Valerie Diker Collection, a landmark exhibition that will be installed in the museum’s American Wing showcasing 116 masterworks representing the achievements of artists from more than fifty cultures across North America. Ranging in date from the second to the early twentieth centuries, the diverse works are promised gifts, donations, and loans to the Met from the pioneering collectors Charles and Valerie Diker. Long considered to be the most significant holdings of historical Native American art in private hands, the Diker Collection has particular strengths in sculpture from British Columbia and Alaska, California baskets, pottery from Southwest pueblos, Plains drawings and regalia, and rare accessories from the eastern Woodlands.
Guatemalan Masks: Selections from the Jim and Jeanne Pieper Collection
Today in Guatemala, masks are worn in spectacular masquerades performed by communities throughout the country during indigenous festivals, Catholic feast days, and secular events. Frequently sponsored by religious organizations known as cofradías, many of these dance-dramas (bailes or danzas) date back to at least the colonial era (1523–1821) and possibly earlier. Elaborately costumed and often highly scripted, the performances bring to life sacred narratives and popular histories, and they serve as public expressions of devotion and communal identity. These performances and the masks used in them draw their power from the interplay of disparate cultural forces and their collective influences. The mask forms include sacred deer and jaguars, saints and serpents, Spanish conquistadors and Maya warriors, cowboys and bulls, and countless mischievous monkeys. Guatemalan Masks: Selections from the Jim and Jeanne Pieper Collection, at the Fowler Museum at UCLA until October 6, 2019, features some eighty of these remarkable masks. They come from the collection of Jim and Jeanne Pieper, who for the last fifty years have traveled to Guatemala, attending festivities across the country and meeting with carvers, masqueraders, and Maya priests to assemble a collection of masks that have accumulated energy from years of use. The collection and its extensive field documentation are promised gifts to the Fowler.
BRUSSELS—There is a tendency to draw a line of demarcation between traditional and contemporary art, especially in the fi eld of African art, even when they come from periods that are not widely separated in time. The sense of spirituality that unites them is becoming more and more apparent thanks in part to the fact that they are increasingly presented together in exhibitions. Far from being separate worlds with distinct aesthetics, the two universes echo each other, resulting in a dynamic and lively contrast. This spiritual power is underscored in the IncarNations—African Art as Philosophy exhibition at the BOZAR in Brussels from June 28–October 6, 2019. Curated by artist Kendell Geers and collector Sindika Dokolo, this new presentation intends to bring a unified and unifying view to the entirety of African art. Its divine, sacred, and symbolic aspects are emphasized here more than aesthetics, though the past and its masterpieces serve as the cornerstone of the exhibition. These are joined by contemporary works that deal with contemporary issues such as racial and social identity, feminism, animism, and any number of other topics. Together the totality of the complex African identity is examined from multiple perspectives.
Legacy: Selections from the Gillett G. Griffin Collection
Legacy: Selections from the Gillett G. Griffin Collection celebrates the life and career of Gillett G. Griffin (1928–2016), highlighting a selection of artworks and artifacts from the thousands that he donated and bequeathed to the Princeton University Art Museum. Griffin was not only a respected curator, scholar, and collector but also a beloved teacher— and one of the most memorable figures in the history of the university and of the Princeton community. Among the fifty-five pieces in the exhibition are Greek, Roman, Egyptian, ancient Near Eastern, Islamic, African, Chinese, Japanese, and Pre-Columbian antiques and antiquities, as well as European and American prints, drawings, and sculptures, showing Griffin’s remarkable range of connoisseurship. A handful of paintings and drawings attest to Griffin’s own talents as an artist. The exhibition opens July 20, 2019, and will be on view through October 6, 2019.
Striking Iron: The Art of African Blacksmiths
The Art of African Blacksmiths is an international traveling exhibition that combines scholarship with objects of great aesthetic beauty to create the most comprehensive treatment of the blacksmith’s art in Africa. The exhibition includes more than 225 artworks from across the African continent, focusing on the region south of the Sahara and covering a time period spanning early archaeological evidence to the present day. Borrowed from American and European public and private collections, it also features wood sculptures studded with iron, blades, and currencies in a myriad of shapes and sizes, diverse musical instruments, body adornments, an array of ritual accoutrements, tools and weapons, and other important objects that enabled Africans to forage and hunt, till the soil, and assure their own protection and prosperity. Currently presented at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art in Washington, D.C. it will then travel to the Musée du Quai Branly – Jacques Chirac in Paris. A feature about the show is available in the Summer Issue (T92) of Tribal Art magazine.
Good as gold
In the cities of the West African nation of Senegal, stylish women have often used jewelry as part of an overall strategy of exhibiting their elegance and prestige. Rooted in the Wolof concept of sanse (dressing up, looking and feeling good), a new long-term exhibition, Good as Gold:Fashioning Senegalese Women, opening October 24, 2018, examines the production, display, and circulation of gold in Senegal. It explores golden adornment as part of a larger dialogic constellation of identity, nationhood, politics, wealth, and individual taste that is largely driven by women. It also celebrates a significant gift of gold jewelry to the National Museum of African Art’s collection. It is guest curated by Amanda M. Maples, curator of African Art at the North Carolina Museum of Art, and its opening will be followed by a full-length publication in spring 2019.
In the MET AOA galleries, Atea: Nature and Divinity in Polynesia will open November 19, 2018. Atea is a Polynesian cosmological term that refers to the moment when it was believed that light first sparked forth, resulting in the birth of the first generation of gods. This exhibition will celebrate the creative ingenuity of Polynesian artists who drew from the natural world to give material expression to their understanding of the divine. Featuring objects from American collections and the Met’s own holdings, the exhibition will showcase some thirty artworks—figural sculpture, painted barkcloth, rare featherwork, and more—dating from the late eighteenth to the nineteenth centuries. The presentation will provide an opportunity to understand a core principle of Pacific art: The divine is not abstract but very much alive in nature. It will be the subject of a Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin.
Heroes and Spirits in Cannes
CANNES—In collaboration with the city of Cannes, the Musée de la Castre is presenting Héros et esprits de Nouvelle-Guinée (Heroes and Spirits of New Guinea), an exhibition that features some forty photographs taken by insatiable adventuress Wylda Bayrón. Her series of portraits shows people from New Guinea wearing their elaborate costumes and extraordinary ornaments. A selection of traditional Melanesian objects is also on hand, complementing and enhancing the photos and providing context for the lively or even apocalyptic imagery by the New York–based photographer. Her work captures societies in transformation that persevere with their ancestral traditions while their traditional lifeways are under constant threat. The remarkable men and women her lens captures challenge the viewer, revealing aspects of these individuals without completely penetrating their mysterious universe. The exhibition is on view from July 5–October 27, 2019, and was produced under the supervision of Chris Boylan.
PARIS—From October 17–31, 2019, Galerie Meyer will devote an exhibition to the art of tattooing, a practice in which peoples all over the world have engaged in order to mark identities and status, as well as to protect themselves against their adversaries. Particularly ubiquitous in the Pacific and the Great North, the two areas Galerie Meyer specializes in, the art of tattooing requires the use of special instruments. The designs made with them are reflected in sculptures and masks, they can also be seen in photographs and paintings. Identités encrées (Inked Identities) will explore the history of all aspects of the tattoo with traditional objects and historical documentation, but it will also delve into the contemporary aspects of the subject. Well-known artists will be on hand and working at the gallery, transforming it into a temporary tattoo parlor. Visitors will have the opportunity to discover the work of Russian artist Dmitry Babakhin and of Polynesian artist Po’oino Yrondi, both of whom specialize in Polynesian tattooing.