Grey Area (Brown version), 1993. Fred Wilson (American, born 1954). Paint, plaster and wood; five busts, each: 18¾ x 9 x 13 in. (47.6 x 22.9 x 33 cm); overall: 20 x 84 in. (50.8 x 213.4 cm). Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of William K. Jacobs, Jr., and bequest of Richard J. Kempe, by exchange, 2008.6a-j. (Photo: Sarah DeSantis and Jonathan Dorado, Brooklyn Museum)
April 15 through August 2, 2015
Director Arnold L. Lehman
Diverse Works: Director’s Choice, 1997-2015 200 Eastern Parkway
Brooklyn (718) 638-5000
A selection of 100 works from the nearly 10,000 acquired during the tenure of the Shelby White and Leon Levy, Director of the Brooklyn Museum, Arnold Lehman, will be presented in his honor on the occasion of his retirement in the summer of 2015. Diverse Works: Director’s Choice, 1997-2015, on view from April 15 through August 2, 2015, includes works in a wide range of media from every corner of the globe. Spanning many centuries, the exhibition brings together important objects from all of the Museum’s collecting areas.The selections range from an ancient Chinese mythical carved figure (5th-3rd century b.c.e.) to contemporary works by Kiki Smith and Chuck Close, and a mixed-media collage (2013) in a customized frame from the American artist Rashaad Newsome. The installation highlights the scope of the Museum’s collecting accomplishments, underscoring the commitment to diversity that makes the Museum’s collections exciting and unique, and thereby honoring the vision of retiring director Lehman.
Highlights from Diverse Works include Kara Walker’s Keys to the Coop (1997), a linocut that depicts an African American woman in bold silhouette, holding the severed head of a chicken; the permanent installation in the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art of Judy Chicago’s iconic work, The Dinner Party (1974-79), which represents 1,038 historical women through ceramic, porcelain, and textile; and Go (2003), a large-scale ceiling painting by Kehinde Wiley. Also included are a silver Song dynasty reliquary (986) inscribed by the artist Li Lingxun; the biomorphic Spacelander bicycle (1960), believed to be one of only five hundred ever sold, making it one of the rarest and most sought-after industrial designs of the mid-twentieth century; an ancient Egyptian Relief of Mourning Women (1319-1204 b.c.e.); and Pablo Picasso’s Woman in Gray (1942), one of several paintings he created in quick succession in Paris during World War II that evoke the bleakness of life in the German-occupied French capital.
Exhibited as well is a sculpture from the Tuskegee Airmen Series (1997) by the artist Michael Richards, who died while working at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001; a mask (circa 1977) depicting Elvis Presley by an unidentified Chewa artist belonging to the Nyau society, where masks of iconic foreigners have been considered to represent antisocial and undesirable values; and the critically acclaimed photographer and documentary filmmaker Timothy Greenfield-Sanders’s inkjet print image of the choreographer Bill T. Jones(2007), which was featured in the Museum’s exhibition The Black List Project (2008).
Directions: Subway: Seventh Avenue express (2 or 3) to Eastern Parkway/Brooklyn Museum stop; Lexington Avenue express (4 or 5) to Nevins Street, cross platform and transfer to the 2 or 3. Bus: B41, B69, B48.On-site parking available