Bechtler Museum of Modern Art Presents Works from 1957

MARCH 05, 2012

March 5, 2012 (Charlotte, N.C.) – The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Mid-Century Modernism: 1957 and the Bechtler Collection now through August 27, 2012. The exhibition features works in all media drawn exclusively from the museum’s permanent collection that focus on 1957, the height of the Bechtler family’s art acquisitions.

 The exhibition takes one moment and reveals and celebrates the diversity of style and approach by 28 artists. It also reveals the breadth and depth of taste when it came to the Bechtler family as collectors. There are works by figures whose careers were significant and profoundly influential and there are works by artists who never attained popular attention or success in the marketplace. But all of the works were important to the Bechtler family and many were created by artists with whom the Bechtler family had personal relationships, in some instances for decades.

Throughout Mid-Century Modernism, the viewer will see a wide framework of style and intention on the part of the artists. Some works are advanced purely for formal qualities; others are deeply imbued by religious belief and specific literary allusions. The exhibition encompasses 41 paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints and an artist book.

Mid-Century Modernism: 1957 and the Bechtler Collection includes works from the Bechtler collection that are on view in the museum for the first time by artists Emilio Stanzani, Robert Lienhard, Lynn Chadwick, Antonio Zoran Music and Zoltan Kemeny. The painting titled Composition by Jean-Paul Riopelle has been restored since it was last on view in the museum’s inaugural exhibition.

 “In thinking about this as a particular moment, the works in this exhibition exist simultaneously on two levels: as visual art expressions of an era and as expressions of what contemporary art was in 1957,” said John Boyer, Bechtler Museum of Modern Art President and CEO. “This exhibition is an analysis of one moment across styles, across artists, across media – all of it captured under the umbrella of the Bechtlers’ interests.”

Exhibition-related Programming

Modern Mondays Series (March 12). Modern Mondays programs enrich the museum experience by providing informal, interactive opportunities to participate in hands-on activities, tours and lectures about works in the Bechtler collection and exhibitions. On March 12, the Bechtler will provide a guided tour Mid-Century Modernism: 1957 and the Bechtler Collection. Modern Mondays programs are free with museum admission and being at 6 p.m. with a car-bar reception. The tour begins at 6:30 p.m. Purchase tickets online at bechtler.org, by phone at 704.353.9200

Modern Mondays Series (March 26). The Bechtler presents 1957: The Year in Jazz as the Modern Mondays program March 26. This combination lecture/performance will highlight the connection between abstract, hard bob jazz and the artworks featured in the Mid-Century Modernism exhibition. Ziad Rabie of the Ziad Jazz Quartet (which performs each month at Jazz at the Bechtler) and Noel Freidline, pianist and artist in residence at UNC Charlotte, will perform music by Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane and others. Modern Mondays programs are free with museum admission and begin at 6 p.m. with a cash-bar reception. The tour begins at 6:30 p.m. Purchase tickets online at bechtler.org, by phone at 704.353.9200

Music and Museum Series (April 29). Music and Museum concerts combine visual art, chamber music and thought-provoking discourse. On April 29, the Bechtler Ensemble will perform works composed in the late 1950s by Bernstein, Bloch and Shostakovich. Artwork from the Mid-Century Modernism exhibition will be the focus of discussion. A cash-bar reception begins at 5 p.m. and the performance begins at 5:30. Tickets are $15 for museum members, $20 for non-members. Purchase tickets online at bechtler.org, by phone 704.353.9200 or at the visitor services desk.

Jazz at the Bechtler (June 1). The popular Jazz at the Bechtler series presents The Year in Jazz/1957 on June 1. The concert takes place 6 to 8 p.m. in the museum lobby and is free with museum admission. Purchase tickets online at bechtler.org, by phone 704.353.9200 or at the visitor services desk. Space is limited. Museum galleries are open until 9 p.m.

Family Day (June 16). Kids of all ages can experiment with methods and materials addressed in the exhibition Mid-Century Modernism: 1957 and the Bechtler Collection. Hands-on art activities and tours will be held throughout the museum on June 16 from noon to 4:30 p.m. Admission is free for those under 18 years old; all others receive a discounted ticket price of $4.





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