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A Decade of Collecting
July 11–October 3

This selection of gifts, purchases and bequests highlights ten years of acquisitions, representing major areas of the Museum’s interests and recognizing some of the most important pieces.

  Charlottesville Collects
African American Art

July 11–August 19

The University of Virginia Art Museum presents a small survey of African-American fine and folk art from the 19th century to the present in an exhibition titled "Charlottesville Collects African-American Art," on display in the Graphics Gallery. Prints and photographs have been selected from the University of Virginia Art Museum's collection, as well as selected collections in the Charlottesville community. This exhibit will look into stylistic trends in addition to how the works are tied in historically to the wider field of American art, which is shown in works by artists including Whitfield Lovell, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Bill Traylor and Carrie Mae Weems.

The exhibit is co-curated by Andrea Douglas, curator of collections and exhibitions, and Carmenita Higgenbotham, assistant professor of American art in U.Va.'s McIntire Department of Art.

Sponsored by UVa Arts$.

  Arshile Gorky:
The Early Years
August 24 – October 28

Arshile Gorky (1904–1947) escaped the Armenian genocide, immigrating to the United States at the age of 16 and adopting his last name from that of the Russian writer Maxim Gorky. He studied at the Rhode Island School of Design and lived in New York. By the end of his career, Gorky was an undisputed master of modern art and a seminal member of the Abstract Expressionists.

Featuring about 15 drawings and one painting from a private collection, the exhibition, previously seen at the CDS Gallery in New York, focuses on Gorky’s early works, from the late 1920s through the 1930s, a period during which he was clearly looking at Miró, Cézanne, and Picasso.
The selection, primarily still lifes and figures, can be studied in terms of how Gorky learned to free the object from its associations and turn it into an abstract compositional element.

The exhibition was originally organized by the Los Angeles gallery Jack Rutberg Fine Arts in 2005, which produced the catalogue Arshile Gorky, the early years.

Exhibition made possible by the Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw Charitable Trust, Acquavella Galleries, the Hans G. & Thordis W. Burkhardt Foundation and the University’s ART$ Dollars program.

Noted art critic and historian Dore Ashton will give a Gallery Talk on Arshile Gorky Thursday, Oct. 4 at 5:30 p.m. in Campbell Hall room 160.


from the Collection

August 24-October 28

The exhibition offers an overview of the Museum’s collection. Works selected represent areas of strength within a strong and diverse collection,
including Hollywood portraits, street photography, and landscape, as well as new acquisitions.

Sponsored by UVa Arts$


from the Collection

August 10-October 3

Late 20th century sculpture took many forms. Unburdened by the freedom of Dada, artists began
to construct works out of materials other than marble and to explore more in-depth, conceptual ideas such as light, sound, and weight. Selections
from the Museum’s sculpture collection, including Isamu Noguchi’s Lunar Landscape (1943–44), John Chamberlain’s Untitled (ca. 1960), and Claes Oldenburg’s Split Button Model (1981), suggest the importance placed on the unbounded exploration of materials and subject matter by post-1945 sculptors.

Sponsored by UVa Arts$

  William Christenberry:

October 19 - December 23

In keeping with the Museum’s curatorial mission of investigating those things that make us particularly American, the 2007–8 exhibition schedule is meant to impact the University and the community using as catalysts three exhibitions, William Christenberry:
Site/Possession, The Dresser Trunk Project, and The Landscape of Slavery: The Plantation in American Art.

William Christenberry is a multi-media artist, whose Brownie photographs are touring under the auspices of Aperture and whose major exhibition recently closed at the Smithsonian Institution American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. Christenberry is also an educator: he has been a member of the art faculty at the Corcoran College of Art and Design since 1968.

Organized by Andrea Douglas, the Museum’s curator of collections and exhibitions, in close collaboration with the artist, this traveling exhibition offers a re-evaluation of the artist’s intent, focusing on how his rarely exhibited drawings form the basis and inspiration of all his other work.

Exhibition made possible with the generous support of the FUNd, the Oakwood Foundation, the Glenstone Foundation, the Council for the Arts, the Arts Enhancement Fund, Barbara and Richard S. Lane, Irwin and Linda Berman, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Dr. Robert L. and Lucinda W. Bunnen, Soul of Virginia Magazine, and additional anonymous support.
  The Dresser Trunk Project
November 3– December 23

Organized by William Daryl Williams, Associate Professor, School of Architecture, this traveling exhibition features 9–11 display trunks designed by
architects from around the country, each of which tells a story of a place of refuge in an era of segregation. These sites, all of which are located in a city served by the Southern Crescent Line, range from a hotel to a train station to a Negro League baseball park. Even with the passage of time and the inevitable loss of structures, The Dresser Trunk Project seeks to link these places together to bring forth into the present their location in architectural, musical and cultural history. The trunks contain stories, photographs, maps, hotel registers, and computer-generated models of the way places looked
or might have looked during the segregation era.

The exhibition will be shown at ten locations along the Crescent Line (currently the Amtrak service connecting New Orleans and New York).
Sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Graham Foundation, Amtrack, and Arts Enhancement Funds.

What a Family!
November 3- December 23

In conjunction with the Virginia Film Festival and its 2007 theme—Kin Flicks—the Museum dips into its broad collections to explore what constitutes “family”in various cultures, yesterday and today. The family is the microcosm and perhaps the ultimate source of all the strife and delight in human existence and in art itself. Great artists in the Museum’s collection such as Picasso, Kathë Kollwitz, Gertrude Kasëbier, Eugene Smith, Tiepolo and Goya demonstrate not only what may or may not define a family but also the fact that any family, like Picasso’s families of
acrobats, is a kind of balancing act of hilarity and sadness, elegance and sordidness, madness and sanity, order and chaos. Images of the family provide great visual and psychological riches.

Sponsored by UVa Arts$

2007 FILMS of Peter Whitehead
July 3 - October 2

Four counter-culture films made in the 1960s are featured.
by Oscar Micheaux

October 3 - November 2

African-American filmmaker Oscar Micheaux made this 1920 silent film as a response to D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation and to oppose any defense of the Klan and lynching. The film is shown in support of the Museum’s program Forming American Identities: Our Southern Legacy and scheduled in conjunction with the colloquium on September 30, 5:30 pm, in the Museum, on “Cinematic Representations” with presenters Carmenita Higginbotham, assistant professor, McIntire Department of Art, and Jane Gaines, professor, Department of English, Duke University.
of Alan Berliner

November 3 - December 22

Berliner, whose films will be featured in this year’s Virginia Film Festival, is known primarily for his experimental variations on the “home movie.”
Exhibition Archives
2008 NIGHTJOHN by Charles Burnett
January 17 - March 3

Just as Oscar Micheaux is considered the greatest black filmmaker of the silent era, many now consider Charles Burnett America’s greatest living black director. His masterpiece, Killer of Sheep, was recently revived and screened at the Virginia Film Festival, but this film about slavery, made in 1996 for the Disney Channel, has yet to receive the recognition it deserves.
March 4 - April 14
April 15 - June 2

These award-winning shorts include new experimental, documentary, and animated films and videos. Visit for details on the Virginia Film
Festival show.
CARRARA by William Wylie
June 3 - September 1

Presented in conjunction with the second annual Festival of the Photograph is a new film by photographer William Wylie, an associate professor in the McIntire Department of Art at U.Va., shot in the historic marble quarries of Carrara, Italy. Several of Wylie’s black and white photographs of Carrara stones and artisans, recent gifts to the Museum, will also be on display.

EXHIBITIONS 2008        
The Landscape of Slavery:
The Plantation in American Art

Organized by the Gibbes Museum in Charleston and curated by Angela Mack, chief curator at the Gibbes, and Maurie McInnis, associate professor in the McIntire Department of Art, this exhibition and its accompanying publication examine the aesthetic motives, historical context, political impact, and social uses of artworks that deal with the theme of the plantation. The show offers a broad chronological sweep, beginning with a 1770 drawing of a South Carolina rice plantation by Joseph Purcell and culminating in the late 20th century with work by such artists as Carrie Mae Weems and Joyce Scott. Comprising about 75 objects, including paintings, works on paper, photographs, collages, mixed media and installation pieces, the exhibition includes numerous African American artists of the 19th and 20th centuries. Programmed as part of a year of exploration into the forging of American identities in relation to Southern culture and history, the exhibition addresses how the image of the plantation functions within the history of American art and Southern history and the impact of these images, both real and perceived, on race relations. The exhibition is made possible with the generous support of the Ceres Foundation, the University of Virginia Art Museum Volunteer Board, Arts Enhancement Funds, and the Lindner Center for Art History in the McIntire Department of Art.
  Irwin Berman: Stools
May 3 – June 15

For more than four decades UVA alumnus Dr. Irwin Berman (MD ’62) has explored a variety of artistic practices and media. This exhibition presents a selection of his stools, designed as art statements. Whether he chooses to manipulate photographic properties or transform wood, metal, plastic and glass into surprising forms, Berman pushes the boundaries of a material’s flexibility, achieving results that can range from elegant formal sculptures to playful and challenging three-dimensional forms. Humor and deep reflection coexist in ironic, playful, and deeply serious ways. The dynamic tensions and topical references call on viewers and sitters alike to question our ecological, ethical, and sexual beliefs and practices.
  Our American

May 3-June 1

Throughout the fall and spring the Museum, in collaboration with the Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Center, Monticello, artists and public school educators has initiated an innovative program for 11th graders in the city and county in support of American history and art SOLs and diversity training. The program draws from the Museum’s three exhibitions, William Christenberry: Site/Possession, The Dresser Trunk Project and The Landscape of Slavery: The Plantation in American Art, Kluge- Ruhe’s No Shades of White: Fiona Foley, and Monticello’s extensive on-line and on-site programs about plantation life. This multi-part program culminates in this special exhibition, featuring the work of 11th graders responding to what it means to be an American and how our Southern legacy affects our heritage and life today. The program is made possible, in part, by the Virginia Commission for the Arts.


May 10-July 13

Drawn from the collection of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Speed explores artists’ use of “motion” in their work. Featured in the exhibition are a variety of pieces, ranging from paintings to sculpture and mobiles. In addition to exploring the ability to literally depict or more subtly convey speed and motion in a particular piece, the exhibition also examines the dialogue between an artist’s intention and the viewer’s perceptions, such as whether an artist intended a brush stroke to give the appearance of being made slowly or quickly. Among the works featured in the exhibition are James E. Butterworth’s 19th-century painting A Racing Yacht on the Great South Bay, Jacob Lawrence’s 1943 watercolor Subway—Home from Work, and a 20thcentury Eshu dance hook made by a Yoruba artist. The exhibition is made possible, in part, by the Sanford J. Miller Family Trust.

This exhibition is part of the Virginia Museum of Fine Art’s  
"Look Here" series, sponsored by SunTrust with support from the Commonwealth of Virginia. Additional support has been provided by the Richard S. Reynolds Foundation, the Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Exhibition Endowment, the Fabergé Ball Endowment, the Fabergé Society, and The Council of VMFA.  

Charlottesville Collects
Himalayan Art

June 6-August 3

Taken primarily from the Museum’s growing collection of Tibetan objects, the exhibition, organized by Elena Pakutova, the 2007–08 Luzak-McIntire Graduate Student Fellow, responds to the interest in our academic and Charlottesville communities in Himalayan art and culture. Featured in the exhibition are selections from the Museum’s fine collection of Tibetan tangkas.

John Toole
Itinerant Painter

June 21-August 9

John Toole arrived in Albemarle County in 1825 to attend the University of Virginia. His studies were short lived as he found painting far more interesting. His career as a prolific itinerant portrait painter spanned over 35 years and today his images offer a peek into the lives of middle-class Virginians. The exhibition, drawn from more than forty paintings and drawings that comprise the collection as well as his extensive archive that together makes up the John Toole Memorial Trust, offers a rarely seen glimpse of the way in which an itinerate painter earned his living. The exhibition is organized by Christopher Oliver, an art history graduate student and Museum intern.