November 16, 2019 – February 16, 2020
Andy Warhol, Mao Tse-Tung, 1972, color screenprint, National Endowment for the Arts Museum Purchase Plan, 1977.91.
© 2019 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.
Photo Revolution: Andy Warhol to Cindy Sherman explores the symbiotic relationship that developed between photography and contemporary art at the end of the twentieth century. Beginning in the 1960s, photography rose to unprecedented prominence in contemporary art. As new movements like Pop Art found inspiration in consumer culture, commercial photography and photo-based design moved from the pages of advertising circulars to gallery walls. Artists like Andy Warhol and Tom Wesselmann incorporated photographic material into their work and emulated aspects of the medium in their compositions. Likewise, photographers of the 1960s experimented with color, collage, and vernacular materials—just like their Pop Art counterparts.
By the end of the 1960s, many contemporary artists relied on photography to document their performances and reconsider the possibility of artwork existing outside the confines of the museum. Photo-based media—television, video, and film—became central to the exploration of ideas raised in the work of Peter Campus, Chris Burden, John Baldessari, and Dara Birnbaum. By the 1980s, a politically active generation of artists—including Nan Goldin, Leon Golub, and Cindy Sherman—dominated contemporary art production, relying heavily, if not exclusively, on photography to probe questions of identity. Organized primarily from the Worcester Art Museum's permanent collection, Photo Revolution: Andy Warhol to Cindy Sherman assesses the trajectory of contemporary art through a comparison of traditional media, such as painting, prints, and sculpture, with photography and emerging photo-based art.
This exhibition is presented with support from the Lunder Foundation — Peter and Paula Lunder family, Catherine M. Colinvaux, and the Schwartz Charitable Foundation. Additional support is provided by the John M. Nelson Fund, Don and Mary Melville Contemporary Art Fund, Hall and Kate Peterson Fund, Heald Curatorial Fund, and the Ruth and John Adam, Jr. Exhibition Fund.
The exhibition is sponsored by Fallon Health and Skinner Auctioneers and Appraisers.
Opening Party: A Night at the Factory
Friday, November 15, 7-11pm
Hike up your miniskirt, rejoice in polyester, and show off your legwarmers! Come in your best period attire to celebrate WAM's newest exhibition tracing iconic artists from the 1960s, '70s, and '80s. DJ and dancing, hors d'oeuvres, and cash bar. Please use Salisbury Street entrance.
Tickets: Members $15, Nonmembers $25, Students $15*
Purchase tickets online at photorevolution.eventbrite.com or at the door.
*valid school ID required; limit one ticket per student.
Exclusive Previews (Members and donors only)
5-7pm Salisbury Society and donors: Private exhibition viewing and reception. Complimentary admission.
6-7pm Members only: Exhibition Preview Hour.
Thursday, November 21, 6pm
Speaker: Diana Tuite, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, Colby College Museum of Art.
Art Talk: Paraphotography: Doing Things with Images
Presented with support from the Michie Family Curatorial Fund, the Amelia and Robert H. Haley Memorial Lecture Fund, the Bernard and Louise Palitz Fund, and the Spear Fund for Public Programs.
Master Series is sponsored by:
Worcester Living Magazine
Worcester Art Museum's ‘Photo Revolution’ examines photography's impact and influence on contemporary art
By Nancy Sheehan, September 26, 2019