Exhibitions: HIDE/SEEK: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture

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    HIDE/SEEK: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture

    • Dates: November 18, 2011 through February 12, 2012
    • Collections: American Art
    Press Releases ?
    • May 20, 2011: Brooklyn, NY Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture, the first major museum exhibition to explore how gender and sexual identity have shaped the creation of American portraiture, organized by and presented at the National Portrait Gallery last fall, will be on view at the Brooklyn Museum from November 18, 2011, through February 12, 2012. With the cooperation of the National Portrait Gallery, the Brooklyn Museum has reconstituted the exhibition in concert with the Tacoma Art Museum, where it will be on view from March 17 through June 10, 2012.

      Hide/Seek includes works in a wide range of media created over the course of one hundred years that reflect a variety of sexual identities and the stories of several generations. The exhibition also highlights the influence of gay and lesbian artists who often developed new visual strategies to code and disguise their subjects’ sexual identities, as well as their own. Hide/Seek considers such themes as the role of sexual difference in depicting modern Americans, how artists have explored the definition of sexuality and gender, how major themes in modern art—especially abstraction—were influenced by marginalization, and how art has reflected society’s changing attitudes.

      Announcing the Brooklyn presentation, Museum Director Arnold L. Lehman states, “From the moment I first learned about this extraordinary exhibition in its planning stages, presenting it in Brooklyn has been a priority. It is an important chronicle of a neglected dimension of American art and a brilliant complement and counterpoint to Youth and Beauty: Art of the American Twenties, a touring exhibition organized by the Brooklyn Museum, also on view this fall.”

      In addition to its commentary on a marginalized cultural history, Hide/Seek offers an unprecedented survey of more than a century of American art. Beginning with late nineteenth-century works by Thomas Eakins and John Singer Sargent, the exhibition traces the subject of gender and sexuality with approximately one hundred works by masters including Romaine Brooks, George Bellows, Marsden Hartley, and Georgia O’Keeffe. It continues through the postwar periods with works by Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Agnes Martin, and Andy Warhol. The exhibition addresses the impact of the Stonewall Riots of 1969, the AIDS epidemic, and the advent of postmodernism and themes of identity in contemporary art.

      The exhibition continues through the end of the twentieth century with major works by artists including Keith Haring, Glenn Ligon, Nan Goldin, Félix González-Torres, and Catherine Opie.

      The Brooklyn presentation will feature nearly all of the works included in the National Portrait Gallery exhibition. Among them are rarely seen works by Charles Demuth, whose better-known industrialized landscapes are on view in Youth and Beauty; a poignant portrait of New Yorker writer Janet Flanner wearing two masks, taken by photographer Berenice Abbott; Andrew Wyeth’s painting of a young neighbor standing nude in a wheat field, much like Botticelli’s Venus emerging from her shell; Robert Mapplethorpe’s photograph riffing on the classic family portrait, in which a leather-clad Brian Idley is seated on a wingback chair shackled to his whip-wielding partner, Lyle Heeter; and Cass Bird’s photographic portrait of a friend staring out from under a cap emblazoned with the words “I Look Just Like My Daddy.” The exhibition will also include David Wojnarowicz’s A Fire in My Belly, an unfinished film the artist created between 1985 and 1987.

      The original presentation was co-curated by David C. Ward, National Portrait Gallery historian, and Jonathan Katz, director of the doctoral program in visual studies at the State University of New York in Buffalo.

      At the Brooklyn Museum the exhibition has been coordinated by Tricia Laughlin Bloom, Project Curator. Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture has been generously supported by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

      Additional support has been provided by the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation.

      Press Area of Website View Original

    • September 1, 2011: Press Preview Thursday November 17, 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.

      HIDE/SEEK: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture, the first major museum exhibition to explore how gender and sexual identity have shaped the creation of American portraiture, organized by and presented at the National Portrait Gallery last fall, will be on view at the Brooklyn Museum from November 18, 2011, through February 12, 2012. With the cooperation of the National Portrait Gallery, the Brooklyn Museum has reconstituted the exhibition in concert with the Tacoma Art Museum, where it will be on view from March 17 through June 10, 2012.

      HIDE/SEEK includes approximately a hundred works in a wide range of media created over the course of one hundred years that reflect a variety of sexual identities and the stories of several generations. Highlighting the influence of gay and lesbian artists, many of whom developed new visual strategies to code and disguise their subjects’ sexual identities as well as their own, HIDE/SEEK considers such themes as the role of sexual difference in depicting modern Americans, how artists have explored the definition of sexuality and gender, how major themes in modern art—especially abstraction—have been influenced by marginalization, and how art has reflected society’s changing attitudes.

      Announcing the Brooklyn presentation, Museum Director Arnold L. Lehman states, “From the moment I first learned about this extraordinary exhibition in its planning stages, presenting it in Brooklyn has been a priority. It is an important chronicle of a neglected dimension of American art and a brilliant complement and counterpoint to Youth and Beauty: Art of the American Twenties, a touring exhibition organized by the Brooklyn Museum, also on view this fall.”

      In addition to its commentary on a marginalized cultural history, HIDE/SEEK offers an unprecedented survey of more than a century of American art. Beginning with late nineteenth-century portraits by Thomas Eakins and John Singer Sargent, it includes works from the first half of the 1900s by such masters as Romaine Brooks, George Bellows, Marsden Hartley, and Georgia O’Keeffe; the exhibition continues through the postwar period with works by Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Agnes Martin, and Andy Warhol, and concludes with major works by late twentieth-century artists such as Keith Haring, Glenn Ligon, Nan Goldin, Félix González-Torres, and Catherine Opie.

      The Brooklyn presentation will feature nearly all of the works included in the National Portrait Gallery exhibition. Among them are rarely seen paintings by Charles Demuth, whose better-known industrialized landscapes are on view in the Brooklyn Museum exhibition Youth and Beauty; a poignant portrait of New Yorker writer Janet Flanner wearing two masks, taken by photographer Berenice Abbott; Andrew Wyeth’s painting of a young neighbor standing nude in a wheat field, much like Botticelli’s Venus emerging from her shell; Robert Mapplethorpe’s photograph riffing on the classic family portrait, in which a leather-clad Brian Ridley is seated on a wingback chair shackled to his whip-wielding partner, Lyle Heeter; and Cass Bird’s photographic portrait of a friend staring out from under a cap emblazoned with the words “I look Just Like My Daddy.” The exhibition will also include David Wojnarowicz’s A Fire in My Belly, an unfinished film the artist created between 1986 and 1987.

      A wide range of public programs will be presented in conjunction with HIDE/SEEK, among them a two-part symposium that will explore themes and issues related to the exhibition. The first panel will examine the complex roles, responsibilities, and challenges that cultural institutions face when presenting “controversial” works of art. A second panel will discuss representations of identity and sexuality in art.

      HIDE/SEEK: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture was originally organized by the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, and has been reorganized by the Brooklyn Museum and the Tacoma Art Museum. The original presentation was co-curated by David C. Ward, National Portrait Gallery, and Jonathan D. Katz, director of the doctoral program in visual studies at the State University of New York in Buffalo. The Brooklyn Museum presentation is coordinated by Tricia Laughlin Bloom, Project Curator.

      The Brooklyn presentation is sponsored by Ford Foundation.

      Other generous support has been provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Barbara and Richard Moore, The Calamus Foundation, the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation, the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Inc., Donald A. Capoccia and Tommie Pegues, the Steven A. and Alexandra M. Cohen Foundation, Inc., Leslie and David Puth, Allison Grover and Susie Scher, and Tom Healy and Fred Hochberg.

      New York magazine is media sponsor.

      Press Area of Website View Original

    Press Coverage of this Exhibition ?

    • THE NEW SEASON; Byzantium To the Bronx, A World of ArtSeptember 18, 2011 By KAREN ROSENBERG"Dates and touring sites are subject to change. SEPTEMBER THE ART OF DISSENT IN 17TH-CENTURY CHINA: MASTERPIECES OF MING LOYALIST ART FROM THE CHIH LO LOU COLLECTION Landscape paintings and calligraphies from a private collection highlight the traumatic collapse of the Ming dynasty. Through Jan. 2 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Manhattan; (212)..."
    • THE NEW SEASON; For Spectacle's Sake, Museums Get SpecificSeptember 18, 2011 By ROBERTA SMITH"THE offerings from New York museums this fall vary widely, from the much-heralded de Kooning retrospective opening Sunday at the Museum of Modern Art to ''Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture,'' a survey of the role of sexual identity in a century's worth of American art that will arrive at the Brooklyn Museum after its..."
    • ARTS, BRIEFLY; Bishop Asks That Video Be Cut From Brooklyn Museum ShowNovember 11, 2011 By PATRICIA COHEN; Compiled by DAVE ITZKOFF"After the Catholic League and several members of Congress objected last year to a video by the artist David Wojnarowicz, the Smithsonian pulled the work from a large group show, ''Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture,'' at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington. The video, ''A Fire in My Belly,'' is again stirring up..."
    • ART REVIEW; This Gay American Life, In Code or in Your FaceNovember 18, 2011 By ROBERTA SMITHRoberta Smith reviews group show Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture, which features portraits of gay artists, at the Brooklyn Museum. Photos (M)
    • The ListingsNovember 25, 2011 "Art Museums and galleries are in Manhattan unless otherwise noted. Full reviews of recent art shows: nytimes.com/art. Museums American Folk Art Museum: 'Super Stars: Quilts From the American Folk Art Museum' (through Dec. 31) This location is featuring 20 quilts in which stars figure in some way, whether as pieced-together geometric forms or as..."
    • HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE; For Art Lovers, Volumes Meant to Awe and InspireNovember 25, 2011 By ROBERTA SMITHHolland Cotter, Roberta Smith, Karen Rosenberg and Ken Johnson recommend art books for holiday gifts. Drawing, Photos (L)
    • The ListingsDecember 9, 2011 "Art Museums and galleries are in Manhattan unless otherwise noted. Full reviews of recent art shows: nytimes.com/art. Museums American Folk Art Museum: 'Super Stars: Quilts From the American Folk Art Museum' (through Dec. 18) This location is featuring 20 quilts in which stars figure in some way, whether as pieced-together geometric forms or as..."
    • The ListingsDecember 16, 2011 "Art Museums and galleries are in Manhattan unless otherwise noted. Full reviews of recent art shows: nytimes.com/art. Museums Bronx Museum of the Arts: 'Muntadas: Information>>Space>>Control' (through Jan. 16) For more than three decades Antoni Muntadas, who goes by the single name Muntadas, has been addressing modern methods of supervising unruly..."
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