MoMA is currently hosting a retrospective of work by performance artist Marina Abramović. The retrospective traces her career over the past four decades with approximately fifty pieces including photographs, video, and sound, as well as live re-performances of Abramović’s works by other people. The show also includes a new, original work performed by Abramović in the museum, marking the longest duration of time that she has performed a single solo piece. A live video stream of the new performance is available here. Abramović discusses the background of this project, and her desire to reach a new generation of viewers, in an interview available here.
Timelines: Sources from History, available on the British Library’s website, allows you to explore British Library collection items chronologically. It includes items from the medieval period to the present, and a diverse array of items from everyday life (handbills, posters, diaries) and from political events (charters, speeches, campaign leaflets).
TateShots is a podcast from the Tate Modern which presents a selection of short videos each month about modern and contemporary art. The next TateShots series, called Sound & Vision, will feature musicians who cross boundaries into visual art: Talking Heads front-man David Byrne; The Fall’s Mark E. Smith; Cosey Fanni Tutti of Throbbing Gristle; anti-folk singer and cartoonist Jeffrey Lewis; performance poet Lydia Lunch and the prolific Billy Childish – who will be shown interviewing himself. For a preview of the series, click here. To be sure you don’t miss an episode, subscribe to the podcast.
A new film airing on PBS’ Independent Lens called Between the Folds chronicles the lives of ten modern paper folders. As the PBS website describes: “Through origami, these offbeat and provocative minds are reshaping ideas of creativity and revealing the relationship between art and science.” On this site, you can also test your origami knowledge by matching folding patterns with finished products, or even printing out patterns to try yourself. Explore the site further to learn about the artists and discover facts about the history of origami.
ARTstor and The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) have just launched more than 1,400 images of works from the MoMA’s permanent collection in the Digital Library. The images have been selected from the museum’s unparalleled collection of modern and contemporary painting and sculpture. The works in the Department of Painting and Sculpture represent a comprehensive overview of major artists and artistic movements from the late 19th century to the present.
To view the collection after logging in, search for: moma “painting and sculpture”
The Database of Virtual Art seeks to document and ultimately preserve the evolving field of digital installation art. The database is intended for both researchers and artists, and digital media artists are encouraged to post content themselves. The web-based resource is free and allows browsing by artist name as well as keyword. Works, literature, people, events and institutions may also be searched.
Pictured: The Living Web by Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau, 2002.
The much-anticipated Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago is now open. Enjoy free admission through Friday, May 22, and don’t forget to contribute to the Greater Chicago Food Depository by bringing a canned good or nonperishable item along.
It is intended to showcase video art content in high quality format from a variety of sources and perspectives… ArtBabble was created so others will join in spreading the world of art through video.
Videos are organized by Series (such as “Behind the Scenes at MoMa“), Channels (similar to subject areas, with a large number of videos about Contemporary Art), Artists, and ArtBabble Partners. Videos can even be exported as MP4s for offline play on computers or Ipods — just click on the Ipod icon beneath a selected video to download.
Contributing institutions include Art21, The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Smithsonian American Art Museum, and The New York Public Library.
In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, we investigated some of the Irish artists in our collection. Images of works by these artists are available through ARTstor, and artist descriptions are borrowed from Oxford Art Online. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
“Eileen Gray, Irish furniture designer and architect, active in France. In 1898 she entered the Slade School of Art, London, with additional instruction in oriental lacquer technique in D. Charles’s shop in Soho. She moved to Paris in 1902, where she continued her training with the Japanese lacquer expert Seizo Sugawara.”
“Thomas Deane, Irish architect. He was the founding partner of the firm of Deane & Woodward, the most significant exponent in the 1850s of the architectural precepts of John Ruskin. Also active in local politics, Deane was twice elected High Sheriff, or Mayor, of Cork, in 1815 and 1830, and was knighted for his public service.”
“James Barry, Irish painter, draughtsman, printmaker and writer. Barry accepted the challenge of history painting despite a glaring lack of patronage for this kind of art in 18th-century Britain. His conviction that modern art was in decline added to his difficulties in competing with the cannon: he was strongly indebted to Italian art, in particular the work of Parmigianino and Annibale Carracci.”
“Mark Francis, Irish painter. He studied at St. Martin’s School of Art (1980–85) and Chelsea School of Art (1985–6). Around 1989 his early energetic, abstract landscape style became more overtly abstract. He adopted a dry-brushing technique, comparable to that developed by Gerhard Richter, to produce soft, smooth, ‘photographic’ and seductive surfaces, featuring microscopic imagery.”
“James Coleman, Irish Conceptual artist. From the early 1970s Coleman made installations using audio tapes, slides and projected film to investigate social and political themes. His Slide Piece (1973, exh. Paris Biennale, 1973, and London, Tate, 1982) presents a series of identical colour images of a street, with a recorded commentary describing visible features from different subjective viewpoints, so that a dialogue is set up between the sameness of each total image and the different details to which our attention is drawn.”
Staff members of the VRC use subject headings from different thesauri to describe the collection’s images. Subject headings can be combined to create complex and precise searches, gathering together all available resources on a particular topic. Some of the thesauri we use? The Getty Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT), the Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names (TGN), and, of course, the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), just to name a few. We are often surprised by the variety of subject headings available and how frequently we expand our own vocabulary.
Just for fun, we’ve compiled the ABCs of subject headings – a list of our favorites, one for every letter of the alphabet. We have also listed some of our favorite runners-up. Try doing a subject search in ARTstor or LUNA for one of these topics, or click on the links below to see search results from our collection. You might discover something new and surprising, or at the very least, entertaining.
Diseases in Art
Ghouls and ogres
Identity (Philosophical concept) in art
Labyrinths in art
Musical instruments – handbells
Ruins in art
Women cleaning personnel