The Whitney To Present The First Museum Survey Of The Work Of Mary Corse

This June, the Whitney Museum of American Art will debut Mary Corse: A Survey in Light, the first museum survey devoted to the work of Mary Corse (born 1945, Berkeley, CA; lives and works in Topanga, CA). One of the few women associated with the West Coast Light and Space movement of the 1960s, Corse shared with her contemporaries a deep fascination with perception and with the possibility that light itself could serve as both a subject and material of art. Yet while others largely migrated away from painting into sculptural and environmental projects, Corse approached the question of light through painting.

Mary Corse (b. 1945), Untitled (Space + Electric Light), 1968

Mary Corse (b. 1945), Untitled (Space + Electric Light), 1968. Argon light, plexiglass, and high-frequency generator, 45 1/4 x 45 1/4 x 4 3/4 in. (114.9 x 114.9 x 12.1 cm). Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego; museum purchase with funds from the Annenberg Foundation. Photograph by Philipp Scholz Rittermann

This long-overdue examination—which will run at the Whitney from June 8 through November 25 in the eighth-floor Hurst Family Galleries—focuses on key moments of experimentation in Corse’s career, highlighting the ways in which her unique formal and material investigations helped forge a new language of painting.

The Whitney exhibition begins in 1964, when, following an unusually intense education in abstract painting as a teen in Berkeley, Corse enrolled at Chouinard Art Institute and moved to downtown Los Angeles. There, she dove headlong into a sustained dialogue with painting, questioning its most essential elements and forms—the brushstroke, the edge, the monochrome, the grid—while charting her own course through studies in quantum physics and unconventional “painting” materials, from fluorescent light and plexiglass to metallic flakes, glass microspheres, and clay. The survey will bring together for the first time Corse’s key bodies of work—including her early shaped canvases, freestanding sculptures, and the light encasements that she engineered between 1966 and 1968, in her early twenties, as well as her breakthrough White Light paintings, begun in 1968, and the Black Earth series that she initiated after moving in 1970 from her downtown studio to the rugged hills of Topanga Canyon.

As a focused survey that will introduce Corse’s work to many visitors, this exhibition endeavors to historicize this understudied artist’s career while placing significant attention on the viewing experience in the galleries. Corse’s exquisite works capture the physical and metaphysical qualities of light on a two-dimensional surface and have the power to activate the viewer in the creation of the perceptual experience: the kinetic effect of the work is contingent upon the movement of the body through space. This experiential component of Corse’s work will be of paramount importance to the installation.

The exhibition is organized in association with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, where it will be on view from July 28 through November 10, 2019. Organized by Kim Conaty, Steven and Ann Ames Curator of Drawings and Prints, with Melinda Lang, curatorial assistant, in close collaboration with the artist, the exhibition unfolds both chronologically and thematically, presenting approximately 25 works dating from the mid-1960s to the present.

Conaty noted: “It’s an exciting moment to recognize Corse’s pioneering achievements, now more than five decades after she began. The experience of her work, which can be both material and immaterial, minimal and maximal, makes us slow down and look, then look again. There is a real magic to the work that is felt, not just seen, and we’re thrilled to offer our visitors the opportunity to discover it.”

In addition, in May 2018, Dia Art Foundation will unveil a new gallery dedicated to Corse at Dia:Beacon. On view for three years, this long-term installation examines the artist’s use of light and geometric form in painting. It celebrates recent acquisitions within a broader group of works that highlights the period from the late 1960s through the 1970s. On October 12, the Whitney is partnering with Dia to present a symposium at the Whitney reflecting on Corse’s career and offering new perspectives on her work. Further details will be forthcoming.

Scott Rothkopf, Deputy Director for Programs and Nancy and Steve Crown Family Chief Curator, commented: “Corse’s exhibition at the Whitney and installation at Dia will finally position her as the true innovator she has been for more than half a century. Not only did she play a key role in the emergence of the West Coast Light and Space movement, but since then she has persistently developed a body of painting remarkable for its technical experimentation and otherworldly beauty.”

Born in Berkeley, California, in 1945, Corse moved to Los Angeles in 1964 and earned her BFA at the Chouinard Art Institute (now California Institute of the Arts) in 1968. Her work was included at the time in several important group exhibitions, such as the 1970 Annual Exhibition at the Whitney (1970); Permutations: Light and Color, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (1970); and Twenty–Four Young Los Angeles Artists, LACMA (1971). Recently, her work has been featured in group exhibitions including Phenomenal: California Light, Space, Surface, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (2011); Pacific Standard Time: Crosscurrents in L.A. Painting and Sculpture, 1950–1970, J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles (2011); Surface, Support, Process: The 1960s Monochrome in the Guggenheim Collection, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (2011); Reductive Minimalism: Women Artists in Dialogue, 1960–2012, University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor (2014); and Light and Space, Seattle Art Museum, WA (2015).

Corse is the recipient of the New Talent Purchase Award, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (1967); the Theodoron Award, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (1971); a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship (1972); and the Cartier Foundation Award (1993).

A richly illustrated monograph, published in cooperation with Yale University Press, will accompany the presentation. The publication features an essay by Conaty, along with additional texts by Robin Clark (Director of the Artist Initiative, SFMoMA), Michael Govan (CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director, Los Angeles County Museum of Art), Alexis Lowry (Associate Curator, Dia Art Foundation), and artist David Reed, as well as an illustrated chronology and exhibition history. It will serve as the first sustained study of Corse’s work and is intended to advance significantly the scholarship and interpretation around the artist’s practice.

Mary Corse: A Survey in Light is organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, in association with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Significant support for Mary Corse: A Survey in Light is provided by The Barnett and Annalee Newman Foundation, Sueyun and Gene Locks, and Donna Perret Rosen and Benjamin M. Rosen.

Daveed Diggs and JooWan Kim to Collaborate on National Geographic: Symphony for Our World

Premiering This Earth Day, April 22, National Geographic and Jason Michael Paul Entertainment, Inc. Welcome Award-Winning Actor as Part of First-in-Class Symphonic Experience

National Geographic and Jason Michael Paul Entertainment, Inc. announced that Tony- and Grammy-award winner Daveed Diggs will narrate, as a contributing artist, the upcoming National Geographic: Symphony for Our World (Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGdDkxoVCKs), which begins touring in April 2018. The actor, rapper, and producer, known for his award-winning work in the musical Hamilton, is bringing a modern take on the classics to the symphony scene with this new show. With MGP Live as the official promoter, an inaugural performance of Symphony for Our World will be held in San Francisco at the Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall on Earth Day, April 22, 2018.NG-SFOW-LogoEndorsed-neg-RGB-634x380

At National Geographic, we believe that our unparalleled visual storytelling can profoundly impact and inspire people to care about our planet. Our yellow border serves as a portal for people to gain new insight into the farthest reaches of the earth and beyond,” said Rosa Zeegers, Executive Vice President, Consumer Products, and Experiences at National Geographic Partners. “We’re thrilled to have Daveed Diggs join us in sharing this ground-breaking show that combines our beautiful imagery with breathtaking music. Daveed’s passion for our mission truly elevates Symphony for Our World.”

Driven by a five-part composition, Symphony for Our World pairs artistry with science as it brings viewers from the depths of the sea, up to coastlines, over mountains and soaring into the sky. Each environment will be accompanied by a different orchestral movement, resulting in a powerful musical tribute to the beauty and wonders of our wild world.

The original symphony and theme were created by Emmy- and BAFTA-nominated Bleeding Fingers Music featuring composers Austin Fray and Andrew Christie with contributions from multi-platinum selling rockers X Ambassadors. Along with Diggs, JooWan Kim of Ensemble Mik Nawooj (a San Francisco Bay Area-based musical group that merges classical, jazz, and hip-hop styles) has joined the project, composing the music for the show’s narrations and overture.

Working with National Geographic on this new kind of immersive storytelling, and sharing so much about the world with music, is something near and dear to my heart,” said Daveed Diggs. “Ever since I was a kid I’ve always liked National Geographic, and am so excited to be a part of Symphony for Our World.”

This inspiring 90-minute live orchestral performance will be presented in concert venues around the world, with groundbreaking imagery and storytelling from 130 years of beloved National Geographic history matched in perfect synchronization with a live orchestra and choir. The tour’s first performance is in conjunction with the television broadcast premiere of ‘Symphony for Our World’, an hour-long special which airs commercial-free on the same day on Nat Geo WILD. The ‘Symphony for Our World’ television event will premiere globally in 140 countries. Continue reading

Stuart Weitzman To Be Honored At New-York Historical Society’s Strawberry Festival On April 25

Annual Luncheon Benefits Educational Programs for NYC School Children

Iconic designer Stuart Weitzman will be honored at New-York Historical Society’s 2018 Strawberry Festival benefit luncheon, an annual event that dates back to 1856. The luncheon will take place on April 25 at the New-York Historical Society (170 Central Park West at 77th Street) and feature Mr. Weitzman in conversation with Vanessa Friedman, fashion director and chief fashion critic for the New York Times. Event check-in begins at 11:30 am. The Strawberry Festival coincides with Walk This Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection of Historic Shoes, on view at New-York Historical April 20 – October 8, 2018.

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New-York Historical Society logo

We are delighted to recognize Stuart Weitzman’s outstanding work in fashion and philanthropy with our Distinguished Service Medal at this year’s Strawberry Festival,” said Pam Schafler, chair of the New-York Historical Society’s Board of Trustees. “Mr. Weitzman has devoted his career to designing fashionable footwear that takes into account women’s lifestyles today. His philanthropy covers a broad range of interests including education for young people—a mission of paramount importance at New-York Historical. Mr. Weitzman’s remarkable collection of historic footwear, on view in our Joyce B. Cowin Women’s History Gallery at the time of the celebration, provides the perfect backdrop as we honor him and commemorate the first anniversary of our Center for Women’s History.”

Mr. Weitzman joins a remarkable list of people celebrated at the Strawberry Festival in prior years. Past honorees include Loretta Lynch, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Mika Brzezinski, Hillary Clinton, Kirsten Gillibrand, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Michelle Obama, Anna Quindlen, Christine Quinn, Cokie Roberts, Lesley Stahl, Pat Klingenstein, and Sue Ann Weinberg.

New-York Historical Society’s Strawberry Festival has long recognized honorees’ contributions to public life since its first gathering in 1856 when guests enjoyed a stimulating lecture and a strawberry feast in Washington Square Park. Funds raised from this event support crucial educational programs for New York City children and youth, as part of New-York Historical’s DiMenna Children’s History Museum and Barbara K. Lipman Children’s History Library. In addition to offering critical initiatives in history education for 200,000 New York City public school students annually, DCHM and Lipman Library have become magnets for underserved children and families, with scholarships offered for weekend and holiday family programs and summertime history camps.

New-York Historical’s Center for Women’s History—the first of its kind in the nation within the walls of a major museum—features the little and often unknown stories of women who have shaped and continue to shape the American experience. As a hub for scholarship and education, the Center demonstrates how women across the spectrum of race, class, and culture have exercised power and effected change long before the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920, which made women full American citizens with the right to vote. Guided by a committee of distinguished historians and informed by the latest research, the Center features permanent installations, temporary exhibitions, and a vibrant array of talks and programs, enriching the cultural landscape of New York City and ushering in a new era of historical discovery.

Stuart Weitzman’s passion for designing women’s shoes has been a lifelong pursuit. He began working at his father’s Massachusetts shoe factory while still in college. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, Mr. Weitzman applied himself to the industry with laser-like focus, eventually building the globally renowned company that bears his name. Today, his shoes dominate red carpet events and are worn by loyal celebrity fans such as Angelina Jolie, Taylor Swift, Beyoncé, and Gigi Hadid—and by millions of women from more than 75 countries around the world. Mr. Weitzman approaches his other endeavors with equal commitment: He shares his free time with his wife Jane and their two daughters, aiding a number of philanthropic causes close to their hearts—including mentoring students on their budding entrepreneurial aspirations at his alma mater and other institutions—and participating in sports, including ping-pong.

On view in the Joyce B. Cowin Women’s History Gallery at New-York Historical’s Center for Women’s History, Walk This Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection of Historic Shoes explores how shoes have transcended their utilitarian purpose to become representations of culture—coveted as objects of desire, designed with artistic consideration, and expressing complicated meanings of femininity, power, and aspiration for women and men alike. The exhibition features 130 pairs of shoes from the iconic designer’s extensive private collection, assembled over three decades with his wife Jane Gershon Weitzman, along with examples drawn from New-York Historical’s own collection. The exhibition catalog, Walk this Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection, published by D Giles Limited, is available from the NYHistory Store and other retailers.

Ticket prices for the 2018 Strawberry Festival begin at $500, and table prices begin at $5,000.