Lucian Freud is widely considered the greatest portrait painter of the twentieth century. His visceral renderings of people from all walks of life have a painterly and psychological drama that is unparalleled in contemporary art. For much of a century—from the late 1940s until his recent death in July 2011—Freud made the living human presence his subject.
The Modern maintains one of the foremost collections of modern and contemporary international art in the central United States. Various movements, themes, and styles are represented, including Abstract Expressionism, Color Field painting, Pop art, and Minimalism, as well as aspects of New Image Painting from the 1970s and beyond, recent developments in abstraction and figurative sculpture, and contemporary movements in photography, video, and digital imagery.
Ged Quinn’s paintings combine landscapes in the vein of Claude Lorrain with fragments of history, art history, and mythology. The works are awe-inspiring in their combination of painterly skills and provocative conceptual strains. In Quinn’s work, sublime backgrounds meet broken-down foregrounds, and at all turns utopian ideals are acknowledged and critiqued. Death, deceit, and decay are also dragged into the frame.
Katie Paterson is known for her multidisciplinary and conceptually driven work, with an emphasis on nature, ecology, geology, and cosmology. Many of her installations have been the result of intensive research and collaboration with specialists as diverse as astronomers, nanotechnologists, and firework manufacturers.
Glenn Ligon: AMERICA is the first comprehensive, mid-career retrospective of Glenn Ligon (b. 1960), widely regarded as one of the most important and influential American artists to have emerged in the past two decades
The work of Brooklyn-based artist, Brian Donnelly, who makes his art under the moniker, "KAWS," is the subject of the first Focus exhibition for the coming 2011-2012 Season.
Richard Diebenkorn: The Ocean Park Series is the most comprehensive show to date of Diebenkorn's most celebrated works. Coorganized by Orange County Museum of Art in Newport Beach, California, and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, the exhibition is curated by OCMA curator Sarah C. Bancroft.
Sculptor Teresita Fernández creates work in response to nature. Reminiscent of clouds, rainstorms, waterfalls, and stars in the night sky, Fernández’s mercurial forms shimmer, float, and undulate before our eyes. The artist is interested in generating an intimate experience with each of her installations. As she has put it, “What I’m after is a lingering, ephemeral engagement. Slow, quiet, and with enough depth kinesthetically to be recalled by the viewer after the work is no longer in front of them.”
Robert Lazzarini is best known for his sculptures of common objects in which detailed craftsmanship is combined with precise illusionistic distortion. Scaled to the size of the original object and using the same materials, Lazzarini creates versions of guns, knives, brass knuckles, chairs, telephones, telephone booths, and skulls, among other things. Factuality is a theme that runs throughout his imagery, as is visual perception and how that perception is constructed in both the mind of the viewer and in the physical world.
Since Ruscha's first road trip from Oklahoma City to Los Angeles in 1956, the artist has continued to engage the images he has encountered along the roads of the western United States. This multimedia presentation features some of his most iconic paintings, including two large-scale works from the 1960s, Standard Station, Amarillo, Texas (1963) and Standard Station with Ten-Cent Western Being Torn in Half (1964). The exhibition marks the first time these two paintings will be reunited in over three decades.