Category Archives: Exhibitions

Avery Art Properties in 20 and Odd Exhibition

 Fisk Jubilee Singers

Photographer unknown, The Fisk Jubilee Singers, ca. 1885, carbon print, Art Properties, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, Chandler Chemical Museum Collection (C00.1580.77).

Art Properties is pleased to be among the lenders to the current exhibition 20 and Odd: The 400-Year Anniversary of 1619, now on view in the Leroy Neiman Gallery, Dodge Hall, on the Morningside campus until September 30, 2019. This exhibition commemorates the 400-year anniversary of the first documented arrival of Africans landing at the Jamestown settlement in 1619, and serves to explore this history through images, documents, archival materials and contemporary art, recounting the first documented Africans in the British colony.

Art work from the University art collection, based in Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, along with material from the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, New York Public Library, and the Library of Congress, have been brought together to help rethink the early history of the United States and to provide insight as to what life would have been like for Africans in the conflicted space of the New World. Works on view from Art Properties include: a 1967 oil painting by Charles Mwenze Mungolo, an artist from the Democratic Republic of the Congo; prints by the African-American artist Hale Woodruff; and an enlarged facsimile of the image seen here, a carbon-print photograph of the Fisk Jubilee Singers, taken in the mid-1880s.

For more information about the exhibition and related programs, go to https://arts.columbia.edu/events/20-and-odd-400-year-anniversary-1619.

Animalia

June 17 – September 13, 2019
Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Wallach Study Center for Art & Architecture, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library

Vessel in the form of a Dog, Colima culture, Mexico, ca. 200, polychrome earthenware, H. 7 1/4 x W. 5 3/4 x L. 12 1/2 in. (18.4 x 14.6 x 31.8 cm), Art Properties, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, Samuel Kirkland Lothrop Collection, Gift of René A. Wormser (1968.8.22).

Now on view in Avery Library is a new summer exhibition called Animalia, which celebrates the essence of animal life as depicted in sculpture, decorative arts, and cultural heritage objects, all drawn from the Art Properties collection. The works on view date from antiquity to today and present animal forms in various media, including soapstone, wood, ceramic, and watercolor on paper.

For many world cultures, the representation of animals in art has had a spiritual significance, reminding viewers today of the perpetually strong ties humans and animals have always had for survival and companionship. The first two cases include works by indigenous populations from Canada, the southwestern United States, Mexico, and Central America, while the latter two cases showcase works of art from China and Japan. With the exception of two modern sculptures, each of the objects on view was made by an artisan whose identity remains unknown to us. That anonymity arguably forces our attention away from the maker and toward the subject represented, reminding us that humankind, and the animals around us, are all one, united as part of nature.

Hoppner, Beechey, Fisher, Lavery: Researching Columbia’s Portraits.

February 11 – May 10, 2019
Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Wallach Study Center for Art & Architecture, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library

John Hoppner, Portrait of Isabella Ricketts, later Mrs. Stanlake Henry Batson (1782-1845), ca. 1800-01, oil on canvas, 39 1/2 x 30 in. (100.2 x 76.2 cm), Art Properties, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, Gift of Loyd H. Langston (C00.762).

Now on view in Avery Library is the exhibition Hoppner, Beechey, Fisher, Lavery: Researching Columbia’s Portraits, curated by Roberto C. Ferrari, Curator of Art Properties, with Mateusz Mayer, Ph.D. student, Department of Art History & Archaeology. This focused exhibition showcases four rarely-seen historical British portraits from the University art collection, painted by these artists between the years 1800 and 1927. The show highlights new discoveries made about each painting, ranging from biography to provenance to political propaganda, but also proposes to question what “British” means both historically and in the age of Brexit.

The Columbia University art collection, stewarded by Art Properties and based in Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, includes nearly 1,000 portrait paintings, as well as hundreds of portrait busts, photographs, and prints. This exhibition encourages students, faculty, and researchers to reconsider the world of portraiture and to encourage the use of the entire University art collection for curricular and educational programs, where new discoveries can be made every day.

 

Transportation Alternatives

New York City as it will be in 1999: a pictorial forecast of the city, 1900. (AA735 N4 N422)

 

TRANSPORTATION ALTERNATIVES

Curator: Lena Newman, Special Collections Librarian

November 9, 2018 – February 8, 2019
Monday – Friday9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Avery Classics Reading Room, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library

In April 2019, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority will shut down the Canarsie Tunnel, a vital underground link that carries L-train riders between Manhattan and Brooklyn, for much-needed repairs. As New Yorkers know all too well, the problems plaguing the city’s transportation infrastructure extend far beyond a single subway line. Express bus lanes, Citi bikes, pedestrian plazas, the constant debate around congestion pricing for cars – all these are attempts made by the city to deal with an aging and increasingly inadequate transportation system. But the challenge of moving people in to, out of and around the city isn’t a new one. The objects in this exhibit seek to illustrate various transportation solutions – from the never realized to the barely still working – throughout New York’s history.

Model Projections

Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library and GSAPP are pleased to announce the opening of a co-presented exhibition, Model Projections, October – December 15, 2018 at the Arthur Ross Architectural Gallery, Buell Hall, Columbia University.

Gallery Talk: November 29th, 6:00-8:00 pm
Reception following
REGISTER to ATTEND

Co-curated by Jennifer Gray and Irene Sunwoo, Model Projections investigates the complex pathways between architecture and its representation through an examination of the practice of model making. While models have long occupied a central role in the design and building processes, during the postwar period the production and function of models expanded as architecture firms increasingly commissioned elaborate three-dimensional representations that were extraordinarily precise in detail—from simulated materials to landscaping, from designer furniture to electrification. The exhibition reveal the model as a site of collaboration, negotiation, and speculation—not unlike the full-scale building that it anticipated.

Drawing primarily upon the collections of Avery Library’s Department of Drawings and Archives, the exhibition focuses on an ecosystem of architectural model making during the mid-twentieth century. It features original photographs, correspondence, and ephemera from the archives of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; photographer Louis Checkman; and especially the pioneering model maker Theodore Conrad, whose material experiments and specialized production techniques offer a framework for questioning the relationships between technology and craft, authenticity and authorship, architectural vision and systematized labor.

Image credit: Photo documenting Neue Nationalgalerie model: view into model, fallen Barcelona Chair. Theodore Conrad papers 1937-1991, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Dept. of Drawings & Archives.

Looking East: James Justinian Morier and Nineteenth-Century Persia

Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library is pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibition, “Looking East: James Justinian Morier and Nineteenth-Century Persia,” in the Wallach Study Center.  This exhibition is the second in a new series called “MA in Art History Presents,” in which the MA students, under the guidance of Dr. Frederique Baumgartner (director of the MA program, Dept. of Art History and Archaeology) and Dr. Roberto C. Ferrari (curator of Art Properties), curate an exhibition drawn from Art Properties and other related Columbia Libraries holdings.  The online exhibition can be viewed by going to http://projects.mcah.columbia.edu/ma/2018/.

“Looking East” focuses on a portrait of J. J. Morier (ca. 1780-1849) wearing Qajar-era Persian clothing, his illustrated travelogues to Persia (published in 1812 and 1818), and his 1824 picaresque novel The Adventures of Hajji Baba of Ispahan, all considered from the perspective of Morier’s own documentary eye, and post-colonial readings of Orientalism today.  The exhibition includes material from Art Properties, the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, and Burke Library.  Conservation work on the books and their cradles were prepared by the Columbia Libraries Conservation Lab.

Complementing the exhibition is a display of Iranian ceramics from the 10th to 19th centuries from the Art Properties collection, and an illustrated copy of Pascal-Xavier Coste’s Monuments modernes de la Perse (Paris, 1867) from Avery Classics.

The exhibition is open to the public Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 5:00pm until December 14, 2018.

IMAGE CAPTION:
Attributed to George Henry Harlow, Portrait of James Justinian Morier (ca.1780-1849), 1818, oil on canvas, 28 x 24 in., Art Properties, Avery Library, Columbia University, Gift of Dr. Calvin H. Plimpton and his mother Anne Hastings Plimpton, to the George A. Plimpton Collection (2000.6.32).

Wisdom of the East Exhibition

Yellow Tara (Vajra Tara), Tibet, late 17th to 18th century, gilded copper-zinc alloy (brass) with traces of polychromy, semiprecious stones, and silk
H. 7 3/16 x W. 6 3/8 x D. 3 1/2 in., Art Properties, Avery Library, Columbia University, Gift of J. G. Phelps Stokes (C00.1603.25).

Now on view in Avery Library’s Wallach Study Center for Art and Architecture is an exhibition of Buddhist art from Art Properties. Entitled Wisdom of the East: Buddhist Art from the J. G. Phelps Stokes Collection, the exhibition showcases a selection of works of art from Tibet, Nepal, China, and Japan dating from the 12th to 19th centuries.

This collection of over fifty sculptures and decorative objects was donated to Columbia in 1959 by James Graham Phelps Stokes (1872-1960), an alum of the College of Physicians & Surgeons and a New York City politician. His brother Isaac Newton Phelps Stokes was an architect whose projects included St. Paul’s Chapel on the Morningside campus. J. G. Phelps Stokes seems to have acquired his art collection during his travels abroad, his brother and he having visited Asia for the first time in 1892-93. Most of the art Stokes donated to Columbia represents the rich visual cultures of Mahayana (“Greater Vehicle”) and Vajrayana (“Diamond” or “Thunderbolt”) Buddhism.

In addition to this collection of art, Stokes’s papers and correspondence are deposited in Columbia’s Rare Book and Manuscript Library. The I. N. Phelps Stokes papers and architectural drawings collection is held in Avery Library Department of Drawings & Archives. The exhibition, curated by Roberto C. Ferrari in Art Properties, is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and will remain on view until September 14, 2018.

 

Avery Classics New Acquisitions 2017-2018 exhibition

Monoprint by Christopher Stern from Something lived, something dreamed: urban design and the American West by William McDonough, 2004. (AA9105 M138)

New Acquisitions 2017-2018

Curator: Teresa Harris

June 4 – September 28, 2018
Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Avery Classics Reading Room, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library

A selection of new acquisitions from the past academic year is currently on display in Avery Classics. Materials range from Soviet photo journals to a hand-drawn copy of Vignola’s seminal treatise on the architectural orders to documents of The Architects’ Resistance (TAR), an activist movement formed by students from Columbia, MIT, and Yale in 1968.

Art in Life Exhibition: Art Properties & the MA in Art History Program

Robert Nanteuil, Portrait of Louis XIV, King of France (1638-1715), 1666, probably third state of seven, engraving on paper, 15 3/8 x 12 1/16 in. (39.1 x 30.6 cm), Art Properties, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, Gift of Mrs. Frederick Paul Keppel  (C00.802.116)

Currently on view in Avery Library’s Wallach Study Center for Art & Architecture is an exhibition entitled Art in Life: Engravings by Robert Nanteuil (c. 1623-1678) from the Frederick Paul Keppel Collection at Columbia University. This exhibition is the result of a new curricular collaboration between Art Properties and the Department of Art History and Archaeology, in which candidates in the MA in Art History program conceive and implement an exhibition utilizing historic art work from the University’s permanent collection. During the 2016 spring semester, under the guidance of program director Frédérique Baumgartner and curator of Art Properties Roberto C. Ferrari, the students worked with a collection of 184 Nanteuil engravings that were a gift to Avery Library in 1947 by the widow of Frederick Paul Keppel (1875-1943), Dean of Columbia College from 1910 to 1918. The students also worked with the Conservation Lab in Butler Library to conserve one of the prints for this exhibition.

Robert Nanteuil trained as an engraver in his hometown of Reims, settled in Paris in 1646-47, and established himself as a portraitist to the court of the Sun King, Louis XIV, eventually becoming Designer and Engraver to the King. Over the course of his brilliant career, Nanteuil produced more than 230 engravings, the majority of which were portraits of contemporary French dignitaries, including the Queen of France, Anne of Austria, and her son Louis XIV. Most of the portraits that Nanteuil created were originally commissioned by wealthy students to decorate their theses. Today, no longer tied to the books and theses they once illustrated, Nanteuil’s engravings now primarily exist as art objects: the material traces of a master engraver and his practice. Sixteen of the prints in Columbia’s permanent collection have been brought together in this exhibition, both to illuminate Nanteuil’s career and shine a light on the nature of Keppel’s print collecting practice.

The exhibition is available for viewing Monday-Friday 9am-5pm until May 18, 2018, and is accompanied by an online exhibition at http://projects.mcah.columbia.edu/ma/2017/.

Please join us for a special Evening at Avery

Art in Life: Engravings by Robert Nanteuil (c. 1623-1678) from The Frederick Paul Keppel Collection at Columbia University
Lecture & Exhibition reception

Frédérique Baumgartner

Department of Art History and Archaeology
Columbia University
April 25, 2018
6:30 – 8:30 PM

Miriam & Ira D. Wallach Center for the Study of Art and Architecture
Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library


REGISTRATION REQUIRED
Sponsored by Avery Library and Avery Friends 

Panoramas

PANORAMAS

Curator: Teresa Harris

December 18, 2017 – April 4, 2018
Monday – Friday9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Avery Classics Reading Room, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library

Panorama is derived from the Greek words meaning ‘all’ and ‘view.’ For centuries, popular entertainment has utilized panoramic composition to transport viewers to far-away places like Athens or Versailles or to the midst of important historical events such as the Battle of Gettysburg. Panoramas have taken many forms from large cylindrical paintings to dioramas to photographic and filmic representations. The items on display in the Avery Classics reading room range in time from approximately 1825 to 1966 demonstrating sustained artistic interest in the genre. Most document urban centers and take the form of long prints that follow streets through cities as various as Tokyo, Leipzig, Paris, London and New York. They capture the built environment at a specific moment in time and record other important elements of society such as modes of transportation and contemporary fashion.