The Painters of Pompeii: Roman Frescoes from the National Archaeological Museum, Naples will see a number of collection highlights travel to North America for the first time. Opening June 26 and running through October 17, this historic presentation of the art of painting in ancient Rome will be presented exclusively at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art before returning to Europe.
After relocating to Santa Fe, New Mexico, for a teaching position, American artist Fritz Scholder (Luiseño) stated he saw one too many over-romanticized and generalized depictions of Indigenous people “looking at the sunset.” With his Indian series, started in 1967, Scholder sought to replace the tourist-approved narratives perpetuated by white artists with the realities he witnessed every day. By combining realism and spirituality with vivid colors and expressive brushstrokes, Scholder created radical new imagery of modern-day Indigenous life. Fritz Scholder: Beyond Stereotypes features 10 prints and one painting from Scholder’s revolutionary Indian series.
Theseus and the Minotaur, Narcissus and Echo, the Judgment of Paris: these may be stories you know, or names you have heard. For millennia, Classical mythology has been a shared language through which artists can tells tales of heroism, love, vengeance, and more. From the frescoes of ancient Rome through the art of today, myths have served as an eternal source of inspiration.
Artists from around the world have long been captured by the enduring appeal of the Italian countryside. Its sweeping vistas, at times sprinkled with ancient ruins, make for an enticing subject for artists in a variety of mediums. American artists in particular traveled to Italy throughout the nineteenth century to study not only the great masterpieces of ancient and Renaissance art, but also to sketch and paint the campagna, or countryside, basked in a beautiful glow.
The half-century or so following the end of World War II was one of the most fertile periods in the history of abstract painting. The works featured in Postwar Abstraction: Variations highlight a period of remarkable creativity, when ideas of abstraction and the nature and limits of artistic mediums were being hotly contested by artists. Associated with movements as diverse as Abstract Expressionism, Color Field painting, Hard-Edge painting, Op Art, and Minimalism, artists continually sought to redefine what painting was and what it could be.
In the spring of 2019, we reopened our second-floor galleries with an exciting new presentation of our permanent collection. Headlining this reinstallation is the Museum’s latest acquisition, Kehinde Wiley’s monumental new portrait Jacob de Graeff (2018) from the artist’s Kehinde Wiley: Saint Louis exhibition. Wiley’s extraordinary painting anchors a new portrait gallery that also features works by Anthony van Dyck, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and George Bellows.
Redesigned in collaboration with Chihuly Studio, the galleries incorporate a unique design that features a three-dimensional approach to viewing some objects in the collection. The presentation allows visitors to explore the large Float Boat and Ikebana Boat installations from all sides as well as includes viewing slots for the Reeds.