Art Stroll: Making Space at MoMA

A couple weeks ago Natalya Aikens and I visited Making Space: Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction is the title of a MoMA Exhibition open until August 2017. It features the work of female artists from 1945 to 1968 and shows artwork from MoMA’s collection from over 50 artists. Paintings, sculptures, photographs, drawings, prints, textiles and ceramics.

Helen Frankenthaler “Trojan Gates” (1955) Oil and Enamel on Canvas

Frankenthaler thinned her pigments with turpentine so that they would soak directly into the canvas and stain it.

Louise Bourgeois “Self Portrait as Bird” (1945) Oil and Ink on cut board with rivets

Louise Nevelson “Big Black” (1963), Painted Wood

To create this sculpture, Nevelson stacked boxes against a wall and filled each compartment with found wooden scraps. She then covered the entire assemblage with black paint.

Bela Kolarova “Five by Four” (1967) Wood, paint, and metal paper fasteners

I loved this piece!

 

Left- Elaine de Kooning “Bullfight” (1960) Acrylic on Paper

Yayoi Kusama “No F” (1959)

Look at the detail of the piece – makes you want to touch it.

Anni Albers “Tapestry” (1948) Handwoven linen and cotton

Sarah Grilo “Add” (1965) Oil on Canvas

First time on view at MoMA. It was one of my favorite pieces and it made me sad to think that this would vanish again after the show in a storage space.

Lee Bonticou “Untitled” (1961)

Lee Bonticou lived in NY above a laundry and found the conveyer belt there. I love the organic yet mechanical piece and you cannot help yourself but look into the dark void.

Amazing!

Carol Rama “Spurting Out ” (1967) – Ink, Gouache, shellac  and plastic doll eyes on paper

This was interesting …and eerie at the same time.

Several thoughts :

  • It was so prominent that a lot of the female artists were spouses of  “famous” and permanently displayed male artists – in a way it must have been an exciting time to be a female artist- but also so hard to break through and be heard.
  • Who inspired whom btw?
  • Mostly only one piece of artwork was displayed by the artists making it seem as that is all the space there is for their amazing work to be displayed
  • MoMA, why not making real space for those artists instead of just a temporary exhibition space. Just display more of this artwork in your permanent collection galleries.
  • More Female Solo Exhibitions would be great – a lot of those artists have quite some scope of work – “Where Are All the Women” by Jerry Saltz is still good and valid read.

I will definitely go back and see it more in depth but I had a great time with Natalya and enjoyed looking at some of the artwork with different eyes, given the different medium she works with .

Making Space: Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction is on show until August 13, 2017 at MoMA

 

Comments (8)

  • Sue Clarke

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    I just love “Add”…such a delightful piece. Maybe it can hang in my living room in between being out in the gallery?

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Wouldn’t that be awesome to have? It should rather hang in our living rooms when vanish in the museum storage again.

      Reply

  • Stephanie

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    I heard about the exhibit on NPR. Looks like it was fab!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Oh I bet that was interesting -might have to see if I can still find it on NPR

      Reply

  • Seth

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    Thanks for taking us along on the ride!

    Reply

  • Diane

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    Thank you for this post. Most interesting. Also like your observations about women artists.

    Reply

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