We partner with dozens of cultural organizations yearly. We are a Founding Member of the Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., International Tour Sponsor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and serve as the main sponsor of approximately ten museum exhibitions a year.
Scroll down to view a selection of our current and upcoming partnerships.
The Met's HD Live in Schools
Robert Rauschenberg: Among Friends
Bank of America is honored to be the global sponsor of Robert Rauschenberg, a major exhibition of the work of Robert Rauschenberg organized in collaboration with Tate Modern, London, and The Museum of Modern Art, New York. It will be the first posthumous retrospective and the most comprehensive survey of the artist’s work in twenty years, on view from December 1, 2016 through April 2, 2017 at Tate Modern. The exhibition will travel to The Museum of Modern Art (May 21, 2017–September 17, 2017) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (November 4, 2017–March 25, 2018).
In London, the retrospective been has been hailed as "the exhibition of the year" and "a must-see" by art critics. Prominent British newspapers The Times, The Telegraph and The Guardian awarded the show five stars.
The Telegraph’s Mark Hudson wrote, “This is, to my mind, the exhibition of the year.” The Guardian’s Adrian Searle described it as “impossibly rich and rewarding.” Writing in The Times, Rachel Campbell-Johnson said, “The breadth of vision is mind-opening.”
The first American artist to win the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale in 1963, Robert Rauschenberg (1925-2008) blazed a new trail for art in the second half of the twentieth century. Moving between painting, sculpture, photography, printmaking, digital technology, stage design and performance, he refused to accept conventional boundaries in art and in life, his quest for innovation fired by his openness to the world, his enthusiasm for collaboration and his passion for travel. Rauschenberg’s radical approach to his artistic practice was always sensational, with the artist producing works so experimental that they eluded definition and categorization.
Each chapter of Rauschenberg’s six-decade career is represented by important international loans that rarely travel due to the fragile condition of the works. Among these is a selection of his iconic Combines, a term Rauschenberg coined for his works that integrated aspects of painting and sculpture and would often include materials found on the streets of New York in the 1950s, such objects as a stuffed eagle or goat, street signs, or a quilt and pillow.
Among these is Monogram, 1955-59, traveling to the UK for the first time in over half a century. The Combines marked a clear break with the works of the previous generation of abstract expressionist painters, such as Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko, who previously had dominated American art. Assembled from materials including a stuffed angora goat, a rubber tire, a tennis ball and a shoe heel, the work demonstrates Rauschenberg’s bold challenge to the hierarchical distinction between traditional art materials and everyday objects.
Monogram, on loan from the Moderna Museet, Stockholm, will take center stage in a gallery dedicated to Rauschenberg’s Combines. Bed, 1955, will travel from The Museum of Modern Art, New York. This influential work was assembled from what was allegedly Rauschenberg’s own pillow and a quilt given as a gift by fellow artist, Dorothea Rockburne, stretched like a canvas and covered with abstract pencil drawings and paint.
The exhibition also features the signature silkscreen paintings that signaled Rauschenberg’s early commitment to political activism, including Retroactive II 1964, which portrays John F. Kennedy, who had recently been assassinated.
Rauschenberg begins in the late 1940s by considering the artist’s early experiments at Black Mountain College near Asheville, North Carolina, a center for creative innovation in the postwar era. Here he studied under legendary Bauhaus figure Joseph Albers and embarked on his first collaborations with fellow artists and friends John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Jasper Johns, David Tudor, Cy Twombly and Susan Weil. This time lead to his seminal Erased de Kooning Drawing in 1953. An almost blank piece of paper in a simple gilded frame, the work paid tribute to the achievements of abstract expressionism as much as it tested the limits of what art could be.
Rauschenberg’s work with Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T), an organization of which he was a founder and which developed collaborations between artists and engineers in the 1960s, is also explored, showing how he helped to blur the boundaries between the visual arts, performance and science.
In the early 1970s Rauschenberg moved his studio and primary residence to Captiva, Florida, and began to travel extensively across Europe, the Americas and Asia. His Cardboards 1971-72 – a wry comment on the forces of globalization – and his sumptuous fabric works such as The Jammers 1975-76 – inspired by his visit to the Indian textile manufacturing center of Ahmedabad – demonstrate his skillful play with unconventional materials. The epic project Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI), a traveling exhibition that took place between 1984 and 1991 taking in Chile, China, Cuba and Tibet, is also featured.
Performance and dance remained key interests for Rauschenberg and form a central strand of the exhibition, as is his interest in pushing the limits of image-making with new materials such as printing on translucent textiles, polished steel or oxidized copper. A striking group of late inkjet paintings, combining dozens of images taken at home and abroad through the use of digital technology, will reveal how he continued to innovate into the twenty-first century.
Peter Moore. Photograph of Robert Rauschenberg’s Pelican (1963) as performed in a former CBS television studio, New York, during the First New York Theater Rally, May 1965.
Photo © Barbara Moore/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. Courtesy Paula Cooper Gallery, New York.
Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA
Presenting sponsors: The Getty and Bank of America
Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA is a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles taking place from September 2017 through January 2018. Led by the Getty, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA is a collaboration of arts institutions across Southern California.
Through a series of thematically linked exhibitions and programs, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA highlights different aspects of Latin American and Latino art from the ancient world to the present day. With topics such as luxury arts in the pre-Columbian Americas, 20th century Afro-Brazilian art, alternative spaces in Mexico City, and boundary-crossing practices of Latino artists, exhibitions range from monographic studies of individual artists to broad surveys that cut across numerous countries.
Supported by more than $16 million in grants from the Getty Foundation, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA involves more than 70 cultural institutions from Los Angeles to Palm Springs, and from San Diego to Santa Barbara. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty. The presenting sponsor is Bank of America.
Ana Serrano, Cartonlandia, 2008.
Cardboard, paper, acrylic paint
5' x 4' x 4.5'
Photo: Julie Klima. Courtesy of the artist.
To be shown at the Craft and Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
International tour sponsor
Founded in 1891, The Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO), is widely regarded as one of the world’s greatest orchestras. Bank of America has partnered with the CSO for more than a decade, becoming Global Sponsor in the historic 2010/11 season when Maestro Riccardo Muti began his tenure as Music Director, and continuing through the Orchestra’s landmark 125th-anniversary season in 2015/16. Muti’s dedication to bringing live symphonic music of the highest artistic caliber to the broadest possible audience has served as the cornerstone of the CSO’s mission.
As part of our ongoing commitment to that mission, Bank of America is proud to sponsor the CSO’s International Tour scheduled to launch in January of 2017. As part of the 2016/2017 season, Muti and the CSO will tour Europe for the sixth time together, performing 11 concerts from January 13 to 27. Performances will take place in Paris, Hamburg, Aalborg, Milan, Vienna, Baden-Baden and Frankfurt.
Highlights of the tour include several debuts: the orchestra’s first appearance at the Philharmonie de Paris, on January 13; celebratory performances as the first international orchestra to appear at Hamburg’s brand-new, state-of-the art Elbphilharmonie, on January 14 and 15, part of the concert hall’s grand-opening week; followed by two concerts at the Musikkens Hus in Aalborg, on January 16 and 17.
The CSO will also make highly anticipated returns to the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, on January 20 and 21; the Musikverein in Vienna, on January 23 and 24; the Festspielhaus in Baden-Baden, on January 25; and the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, on January 27.
Among the featured works in the CSO’s tour repertoire are Paul Hindemith’s Concert Music for String Orchestra and Brass; Edward Elgar’s In the South (Alassio); Modest Mussorgsky’s A Night on Bald Mountain; Maurice Ravel’s orchestration of Mussorgsky’s Pictures from an Exhibition; Richard Strauss’s Don Juan; Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4; and Antonin Dvořák’s Husitská Overture—first performed by the CSO as part of its premiere concerts in October 1891.
Photo Credit: Chicago Symphony Orchestra, ©Todd Rosenberg Photography
Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
September 24, 2016, will mark a special moment in the history of the United States, when our only national museum devoted to African American history and culture opens on the Washington Mall after more than 12 years of planning and development. Following an Act of Congress in 2003 which sought to establish the museum, work to raise funds and develop the museum’s plans began in earnest. The NMAAHC is the 19th Smithsonian Institution museum.
Bank of America is honored to be part of this important moment in our history. We were an early supporter of the yet-to-be-built museum through our sponsorship of “Save our African American Treasures,” a national program which traveled the country to discover important artifacts that citizens might have in their possession. These holders of treasures in some cases gifted them to the museum, but also received expert advice as to their significance, value and their maintenance through this program.
Fast-forward to 2011, when the museum Council was formed, and our CEO, Brian Moynihan, became one of its members. Our company became a founding donor in 2014 and, more recently, undertook to be a sponsor of the opening events that will take place throughout late September and early October of this year.
Building on some of our existing programs, the Bank also provided funding through our Art Conservation Project to conserve nine important works by African American artists, which will be a permanent feature of the museum’s exhibitry.
In addition, we were pleased to donate a collection of more than 60 photographs by Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe. The distinguished photographer developed this collection from 1977 through 1982, to document the unique culture of the Gullah community of Daufuskie Island in South Carolina.
The NMAAHC building’s lead designer David Adjaye and lead architect Philip Freelon, together with their architectural team Freelon Adjaye Bond/SmithGroup, won an international competition in 2009 to design and deliver the museum. Groundbreaking occurred in 2012. The nearly 400,000-square-foot museum will be the nation’s largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American experience.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture. Architectural photo by Alan Karchmer
Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist
Art Institute of Chicago
Bank of America is pleased to sponsor Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist, on view at the Art Institute of Chicago from June 25, 2017 throguh September 10, 2017. This exhibition—organized by the Art Institute of Chicago, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Réunion des musées nationaux–Grand Palais—is the first to delve into the artist’s radical experiments in the applied arts, underscoring his highly personal achievements not only as a painter but also as a sculptor, ceramist, printmaker, and decorator. After its debut at the Art Institute, the exhibition will travel to the Grand Palais in Paris.
Utilizing new research into his working processes, the exhibition sheds light on Gauguin’s identity as an artist-artisan, looking at moments when he stood at an artistic crossroads and found new direction by exploring unconventional media and methods.
The exhibition features some 240 works, including the largest-ever public presentation of the artist’s ceramics, the reunion and display of related works side-by-side, and a selection of ethnographic objects that reveals his sources of inspiration. Together these works attest to Gauguin’s expansive notions of what art should be and his embrace of multimedia, installation, and found objects long before these concepts were considered common artistic practices.
Best known for his paintings of women in idyllic Tahitian settings, Paul Gauguin (French, 1848-1903) was an artist whose life and career spanned the globe, from his childhood in Lima with his Peruvian mother’s family, to his marriage to a Danish woman and raising their family in Copenhagen, to his renowned travels to Tahiti. His works defy categorization. In his famous self-portrait from 1890-1891, he chose to represent himself as an artist who excelled in both two and three dimensions, flanking his image with one of his most iconic paintings, The Yellow Christ (1889), and one of his most important ceramics, Self-Portrait in Form of a Grotesque Head (1889), all on view in the exhibition.
From his early years still grappling with Impressionism (1877–86), to his time in Brittany and Martinique (1886–91), to his first trip to Tahiti (1891–93), to his return to Paris (1893–95), and to his last years in Tahiti and Hiva Oa (1895–1903), Gauguin adapted his progressive and unique approach to the materials of each location and developed ingenious processes in response to various physical or financial limitations—and sometimes simply out of his desire to do what no artist had done before.
Gauguin's naturalistic forms and “primitive” subject matter would embolden a younger generation of artists to move away from late Impressionism and pursue more abstract, or poetically inclined subjects, some inspired by French Symbolist poetry, others from myth, ancient history, and non-Western cultural traditions for motifs that portray the more spiritual and supernatural aspects of human experience. Though unappreciated in his lifetime, Gauguin ultimately proved extremely influential to twentieth-century modern art, in particular that of Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque and their development of Cubism. In addition, Gauguin's experimentation with bold color palettes would have a direct effect on the Fauvists, most notably Henri Matisse.
Paul Gauguin. Vase in the Form of Leda and the Swan, 1887–1888. Private collection.
Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect
Brandywine River Museum of Art
Bank of America is pleased to support the exhibition Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect on view from June 24 through September 17, 2017, at the Brandywine River Museum of Art in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. The exhibition marks the 100th anniversary of Andrew Wyeth’s birth, and is co-organized by the Brandywine River Museum of Art and the Seattle Art Museum. The exhibition will introduce Wyeth to new audiences as well as allow those familiar with his work to revisit his contributions to twentieth-century American art.
The Brandywine will serve as the only East Coast venue for the exhibition, and the only location at which visitors will be able to immerse themselves in both Wyeth’s work and life. The Museum campus is home to the artist’s studio, which served as his principal Pennsylvania workspace from 1940 through 2008, and also Kuerner Farm, a major source of inspiration throughout Wyeth’s career. Tours to these sites, both National Historic Landmarks, add to the experience and understanding of his work, and give audiences a dynamic view into Wyeth’s very private world—his approach, technique, and the landscapes and scenes that informed his painting throughout his life.
Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect is the first major survey of the artist’s work in more than 40 years and provides the most in-depth presentation of the renowned artist’s diverse and prolific practice to date. The exhibition features more than one hundred of his finest paintings and works on papers selected from major museums and private collections, spanning the entirety of the artist’s career: from the early watercolors that established his reputation to his final painting, Goodbye, completed just a few months before his death in 2009. The show also includes many of Wyeth’s studies, which were rarely exhibited in the artist’s lifetime and offer new insights into his creative process and approach.
Wyeth’s life extended from World War I—a period that sparked the imagination of the artist as a young boy—to the new millennium. This comprehensive survey examines four major periods in Wyeth’s career, taking inspiration from the artist’s own words likening his painting to “following a long thread leading like time to change and evolution.” The exhibition offers new interpretations of his work, including the lesser -explored influences of popular film and images of war, and looks more closely at the relatively unstudied but numerous portrayals of African Americans from the Chadds Ford community. Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect also provides a thorough comparison of his widely divergent approaches to watercolor—which inspired him to paint quickly and at times with abandon—and to his use of tempera, a more controlled medium, in which he slowly and deliberately built up layers of paint on panels.
This exhibition explores how the artist’s work evolved over the decades and connects him more fully to traditions in American and European art. His career arc is also explored, noting the critical responses to his work, as well as his immense public success.
Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect will bring together both well-known and rarely seen works created between the mid-1930s and Wyeth’s death that reveal the subjects that continually inspired Wyeth and the evolution of his imagery. Organized chronologically, the exhibition examines Wyeth’s unrelenting realism in the context of the twentieth century, looking at how outside forces shaped the artist’s choice of subjects and his approach to portraying the people, places and things that reflect the internal musings of a complicated personality.
Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009). Winter, 1946, 1946, tempera.
© 2017 Andrew Wyeth/Artists Rights Society (ARS), North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh
Carnegie Hall, the world’s most famous concert hall
Bank of America is the proud Season Sponsor of Carnegie Hall. Carnegie Hall features the world’s finest orchestras, chamber ensembles and recitalists, as well as pop, world and jazz artists, along with new music and special commissions.
Carnegie Hall’s mission is to present extraordinary music and musicians on the three stages of this legendary hall, to bring the transformative power of music to the widest possible audience, to provide visionary education programs, and to foster the future of music through the cultivation of new works, artists and audiences.
Bank of America also supports Carnegie Hall’s Musical Exchange education program, which provides a global online community where young musicians (ages 13 and up) connect with each other, share their musical performances and participate in groups and projects led by professional artists from Carnegie Hall. Musical Exchange focuses on musical sharing, creativity and international collaboration. Young musicians from all over the world — at all levels and representing all musical styles — are invited to join the community, created by Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute, the Hall’s education and community arm.
Some of the current projects under way include an extended online workshop called The Singer’s Audition Handbook, providing resources to help aspiring singers to identify, prepare for and successfully audition for educational and performance opportunities; Songwriting Exchange, where professional songwriters Deidre Rodman Struck and Mike Viola help students explore songwriting techniques through a series of creative prompts, video blogs and live chats; and a humanitarian project called Music from the Mountains, developed by violinist Hannah Schneider to encourage struggling musicians in the poverty-stricken, religiously and ethnically divided North Caucasus of Russia to transcend their circumstances and differences and unite through the power of music.
Carnegie Hall’s 126th season opens Thursday, October 6 with Gustavo Dudamel and the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Stravinsky’s vivid ballet scores for Pétrouchka and Le sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring). Throughout its illustrious history, the Hall has played host to more than 10,000 premieres. Carnegie Hall’s commitment to new music continues with the second year of its five-year 125 Commissions Project, over the span of which at least 125 new works will be commissioned from today’s leading composers. Launched during the Hall’s 125th anniversary season, the project features new solo, chamber and orchestral music from both established and emerging composers, including works in the new season by Yves Chauris, Donnacha Dennehy, Sofia Gubaidulina, James MacMillan, Frederic Rzewski, Caroline Shaw, Chris Thile and Jörg Widmann, among others.
Building upon a recent and highly successful emphasis on early-music programming, Carnegie Hall leads a citywide festival — La Serenissima: Music and Arts from the Venetian Republic — in February 2017 with concerts that feature vocal masterpieces and virtuoso instrumental music that emanated from the Republic that flourished for more than 1,000 years until it fell to Napoleon in 1797. Highlights include a survey of music from Venice, Istanbul, Cyprus and Crete by Jordi Savall and his ensembles Hespèrion XXI, Le Concert des Nations and La Capella Reial de Catalunya.
The festival extends throughout New York City with events at leading cultural institutions, including lectures, art exhibits, panel discussions and other performances that examine not just the unparalleled cultural innovations of the Venetian Republic, but also the scandalous, ribald and libertine history that the passage of time has rendered less familiar.
Carnegie Hall is proud that the music education and community programs of the Weill Music Institute (WMI) will now serve more people than ever before — nearly 600,000 participants during the coming season. Highlights include a renewed focus on expanding access to instrumental and orchestral instruction nationwide through NYO2 and PlayUSA, two initiatives that target communities underserved and underrepresented in classical music.
In summer 2016, the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO-USA), featuring the country’s best young players ages 16–19, is led by conductor Christoph Eschenbach in a concert at Carnegie Hall that also features pianist Emanuel Ax, before NYO-USA embarks on a European tour with conductor Valery Gergiev and pianist Denis Matsuev.
Link Up, a WMI program for grades 3–5 offered for free to more than 90 orchestras nationally and in selected international locations, continues to grow, adding a fourth curriculum, The Orchestra Swings, and Musical Explorers, for grades K–2, continues to serve students across the country. WMI’s Summer Music Educators Workshop brings teachers from across the nation together to share best practices and cultivate a strong community of music educators. Among WMI’s acclaimed master classes and workshops for young musicians, Joyce DiDonato, Marilyn Horne, Dame Felicity Lott, Margo Garrett, The Tallis Scholars and Jonathan Biss lead sessions in the 2016–2017 season.
Photo: ©Jeff Goldberg/Esto
Matisse in the Studio
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Bank of America is pleased to support Matisse in the Studio, on view at the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) Boston from April 9 – July 9, 2017. Henri Matisse (French, 1869-1954), who revolutionized twentieth century art, believed that his treasured group of objects was instrumental to his studio practice. Matisse in the Studio is the first major international exhibition to examine the importance of Matisse’s personal collection of objects, offering unprecedented insight into the artist’s creativity. The MFA is the only U.S. venue to display these rare pairings of Matisse’s major works with objects of inspiration. The exhibition is organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Royal Academy of Arts, in partnership with the Musée Matisse, Nice.
Matisse in the Studio offers the rare opportunity to observe the workings of the mind of a great artist known for his revolutionary approach to color and composition. Born in northern France, he studied in Paris and moved frequently during his long career, taking with him his personal collection of international objects from studio to studio. He eventually settled in Nice. While Matisse’s impact on modern art has been widely acknowledged, his interest in the art of cultures outside of the French tradition in which he was raised has been little explored.
The exhibition examines the essential role that objects from the artist’s personal collection played in his art, demonstrating their profound influence on his creative choices. Matisse believed that these objects were indispensable, serving both as inspiration and as a material extension of his working process. In 1951, he described them as actors: “A good actor can have a part in ten different plays; an object can play a role in ten different pictures.”
Exploring the various ideas and inspirations that the artist drew from his collection of objects, the exhibition is organized into five thematic sections—“The Object Is an Actor,” “The Nude,” “The Face,” “Studio as Theatre,” and “Essential Forms”—featuring a range of works in a variety of media from different points in Matisse’s career. Approximately 36 paintings, 26 drawings, 11 bronzes, nine cut-outs, three prints, and an illustrated book by Matisse are showcased alongside about 39 works from his studio collection—many on loan from private collections and publicly exhibited outside of France for the first time. They include a pewter jug, a chocolate maker given as a wedding present, and an Andalusian vase found in Spain, as well as textiles, sculptures and masks from the various North African, Asian, and African traditions that influenced Matisse.
The Object Is an Actor
The exhibition’s introductory section focuses on a few frequent objects or “actors” that frequently reappear under various guises in several works spanning four decades of Matisse’s career. A 1946 photograph by Hélène Adant shows some of Matisse’s favorite objects, lined up in a row. On the back, an inscription by the artist reads, “Objects which have been of use to me nearly all my life.” A green glass Andalusian vase, which was purchased by the artist during a 1910–11 trip to Spain, is displayed in the gallery. The anthropomorphic vase takes center stage in the still lifes Vase of Flowers (1924), and Safrano Roses at the Window (1925). Matisse faithfully recreated the vase’s physical qualities in both paintings, but adapted its shapes and colors. This pair of works reveals his interest in the environments that objects can create—in each painting, the vase is surrounded by a particular space and light, as well as by other neighboring objects—changing how viewers perceive it.
This section focuses on ideas that Matisse borrowed from a wide variety of objects depicting the human figure. Around 1906, when he started collecting figures and masks from Africa, Matisse radically changed the composition and handling of the human body in his work, developing a new mode of representation at odds with long-standing academic principles and social conventions.
The first African sculpture acquired by Matisse was a Vili figure from Congo (19th-early 20th century), purchased at a Parisian shop in the fall of 1906. He painted the Vili sculpture only once, in Still Life with African Statuette (1907), a rarely exhibited work from a private collection.
Standing Nude (1906–07) is among the first major paintings to demonstrate a later, more specific response to the art of Africa, in the context of a larger early twentieth century fascination with ideas from cultures beyond the Western canon. Combining ideas from a nude photograph in a popular French illustrated journal with abstract elements borrowed from African sculpture, the painting is one of the more revolutionary nudes of twentieth century art.
Matisse also developed a new visual language for portraiture. Paintings and sculptures in this section reveal a shift in priority, to capture the character of his sitters rather than their physical likenesses. This new approach was strongly influenced by his collection of masks, including examples from the Punu, Yoruba and Kuba cultures of Africa. While Matisse, like many of his contemporaries, knew little about the masks’ histories, users or original contexts, he appropriated from their forms and functions, using them to illuminate otherwise unseen qualities of the wearer.
Studio as Theatre
In the 1920s, while working in Nice, Matisse began to paint a series of interiors often featuring a female model placed against a richly-patterned background and playing the role of an odalisque, or a concubine in a harem. The artist’s working space in his apartment was like a theatrical set – continuously staged and redesigned with elaborate props and textiles, many from Spain and Morocco. This section explores the complex fictions Matisse created from North African culture.
This section also includes one of Matisse’s last great canvasses, Interior with Egyptian Curtain (1948), in the company of the actual Egyptian khayamiya, made by a tentmaker in Cairo, that is featured in it. This display is a powerful demonstration of the exhibition’s theme: that Matisse did not simply replicate the objects in his collection; instead, he was inspired by decorative traditions for the distinctive ways of seeing and making that they offered him.
During the mid-1930s, Matisse’s art underwent a radical transformation, in which drawing played a crucial role. He began rendering people and objects in a visual shorthand that made them seem to float within the abstract space of the paper. Employing an increasingly linear and graphic pictorial language, Matisse’s imagery gradually transformed into ensembles of distilled pictorial signs for the things represented.
Matisse began to work with cut-and-pasted paper as an independent medium. His first extended cut-out project was an illustrated book called Jazz, published in 1947. For Matisse, the process of making cut-outs, which he described as “cutting directly into vivid color” and “drawing with scissors” involved a new kind of liberty –taking an object out of its tangible space and translating it into a flat sign. The Jazz composition Forms contains extremely condensed signs inspired by a first or second century Hellenistic female torso from the artist’s collection.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), is recognized for the quality and scope of its collection, representing all cultures and time periods. The Museum has more than 140 galleries displaying its encyclopedic collection, which includes Art of the Americas; Art of Europe; Contemporary Art; Art of Asia, Oceania, and Africa; Art of the Ancient World; Prints, Drawings, and Photographs; Textile and Fashion Arts; and Musical Instruments.
Photograph by Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908-2004) of Matisse with his collection of Kuba cloths and a Samoan tapa on the wall behind him, Villa La Rêve, Vence
Henri Cartier, Bresson (French, 1908-2004)
© Henri Cartier-Bresson/Magnum Photos
Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera
Heard Museum, Phoenix
Bank of America is pleased to support Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, on view at the Heard Museum from April 11 through August 20, 2017. Visitors will have a rare opportunity to see masterpieces by the legendary twentieth century Mexican artists as well as works by other artists with whom they collaborated, and objects and ephemera that were important in their lives. The exhibition allows visitors to explore the intersection of American Indian art with broader mainstream artistic movements such as Surrealism and Modernism.
The lives and work of artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera continue to enthrall audiences more than half a century after their deaths. Their unconventional relationship was passionate and fiery, steeped in progressive political principles and their love of indigenous Mexican culture. The exhibition brings together 33 works by the artists as well as personal letters and 57 photographs documenting Kahlo and Rivera’s lives by Edward Weston, Lola Alvarez Bravo, and Guillermo Kahlo, Frida Kahlo’s father, among others.
The 33 works by Kahlo and Rivera are from the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection. They include Kahlo’s Self Portrait with Monkeys and Diego on My Mind, and Rivera’s Calla Lily Vendor and Sunflowers.
The mission of the Heard Museum is to be the world’s preeminent museum for the presentation, interpretation, and advancement of American Indian art, emphasizing its intersection with broader artistic and cultural themes. Since its founding by Dwight and Maie Heard in 1929, the Heard Museum has grown in size and stature to become recognized internationally for the quality of its collections, its educational programming and its festivals. Dedicated to the sensitive and accurate portrayal of Native arts and cultures, the Heard is an institution that successfully combines the stories of American Indian people from a personal perspective with the beauty of art. Through innovative programs, world-class exhibitions and unmatched festivals, the Heard Museum sets the standard nationally for collaborating with Native people to present first-person voices. Partnerships with American Indian artists and tribal communities provide visitors with a distinctive perspective about the art and cultures of Native people, especially those from the Southwest.
Frida Kahlo, Self-Portrait with Monkeys, 1943. © 2016 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York and the INBA.
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
Bank of America is pleased to support the new San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), which recently opened its doors after a three-year transformation. As a Premier Sponsor, our support extends to SFMOMA’s special exhibitions and art, education and community programs. Among the exhibitions sponsored by Bank of America is the inaugural exhibition The Campaign for Art: Modern and Contemporary.
Partnering with architecture firm Snøhetta, SFMOMA’s 235,000-square-foot building expansion will nearly triple gallery space and include 45,000 square feet of art-filled space open free of charge. SFMOMA will be the largest museum for modern and contemporary art in the United States, and attendance will total more than 1 million visitors annually. The new SFMOMA will offer new ways to inspire, educate and engage visitors, through seven floors of galleries, special exhibitions and absorbing digital learning initiatives. The new Pritzker Center for Photography will be the largest space in any American art museum dedicated to the exhibition, research and interpretation of photography. In addition, admission will be free for visitors age 18 and under. The new museum will provide a showcase for works by Alexander Calder, Chuck Close, Frida Kahlo, Ellsworth Kelly, Agnes Martin, Jackson Pollock, Gerhard Richter, Richard Serra, Cindy Sherman, Andy Warhol and many others, along with postwar and contemporary artworks from the 1,100-piece Doris and Donald Fisher Collection.
The Campaign for Art: Modern and Contemporary, on view from May 14 through September 18, is one of several exhibitions highlighting contributions from the museum’s Campaign for Art. This installation will introduce a wide range of newly committed and gifted modern and contemporary works, filling in gaps and building on strengths of SFMOMA’s collection. Illustrating the extraordinary growth in every curatorial department, this exhibition will present a multidisciplinary selection from donated works to Painting and Sculpture, Photography, Media Arts and Architecture and Design. Highlights include paintings by Jackson Pollock, Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg, and an entire gallery dedicated to Joseph Beuys.
The exhibition is organized around notable aesthetic breakthroughs and constellations of related European, Bay Area, and other American artists. The dawn of the twentieth century saw the rise of abstraction in tandem with the explosive growth of urban centers. Art of postwar Germany has been a particular focus for the museum over the past 25 years. The museum’s long-standing commitment to artists working in California, and especially in the Bay Area, has also been greatly reinforced by the Campaign; an array of such works are featured here and In Art of Northern California: Three Views. Photography has been fundamental to SFMOMA since the museum’s founding, and a gallery devoted to the late work of Diane Arbus showcases a major addition to the photography collection. Media arts highlights include historic pieces by performance and video pioneers Ant Farm, Lynn Hershman Leeson and Nam June Paik. The architecture and design collection presents a selection of chairs, each of a single material, and a group of experimental works of architecture by contemporary practitioners that bring innovation into focus.
This presentation of modern and contemporary works on paper inaugurates SFMOMA’s first space dedicated to the medium. Part one of a two-part exhibition, it reveals the rich array of drawings, collages and watercolors pledged to the museum through the Campaign for Art. Together the works on view reflect diverse creative approaches, including explorations of radical abstraction, conceptual control and psychological experience.
Photo credit: Snøhetta expansion of the new SFMOMA; photo: © Henrik Kam, courtesy SFMOMA.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Global tour sponsor
Bank of America is the International Tour Sponsor for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.
Enabling major American performing arts organizations to tour internationally is part of Bank of America’s efforts to increase cultural understanding and open opportunities for dialogue through the arts. At each destination, thousands of people enjoy masterful performances and share cultural experiences with fellow audiences around the world.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has been celebrating the African-American cultural experience and the American modern dance tradition for more than 50 years. Recognized by the U.S. Congress as a vital “Cultural Ambassador to the World,” the Company has performed for more than 23 million people in 48 states and in 71 countries on six continents.
Under the leadership of its artistic director, Robert Battle, the Ailey Company will bring its uplifting artistry to a dozen European cities. Among the Company’s diverse repertory, audiences will enjoy inspiring performances of such classics as Cry, the female solo made famous by Judith Jamison and dedicated to “all black women everywhere — especially our mothers”; Night Creature, a dazzling ballet set to the music of Duke Ellington; and Revelations, the Company’s signature American masterpiece inspired by Alvin Ailey’s childhood memories of life in rural Texas, and the song-sermons, gospel songs and holy blues he experienced as a parishioner in the Baptist Church.
Since its debut in 1960, Ailey’s Revelations has moved audiences around the world through its powerful storytelling and soul-stirring music, evoking timeless themes of determination, hope and transcendence. More people have seen Revelations than any other modern dance work in history.
In addition to these classics, the Company will premiere Robert Battle’s 2015 work, Awakening, and celebrated choreographer Ronald K. Brown’s 2015 Cuban-inspired creation, Open Door, set to the Grammy Award–winning music by Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra.
From September 6 to October 19, the Company will perform throughout England, Wales and Scotland, with inaugural debuts in Southampton and Canterbury, England. On October 22 and 23, the Company returns to Salle Métropole in Lausanne, Switzerland, followed by seven performances at the Tivoli Concert Hall in Copenhagen, Denmark, from October 26 to October 30.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater was founded in 1958 by dancer/choreographer Alvin Ailey to share the richness of African-American culture and American modern dance with the world.
Caption Credits: Linda Celeste Sims and Yannick Lebrun. Photo by Andrew Eccles
Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
Bank of America is pleased to provide major support for Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim. On view from February 10, 2017 to September 6, 2017 on the occasion of the eightieth anniversary of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim features more than 170 modern objects from the permanent collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice. Assembling many of the foundation’s most iconic works along with treasures by lesser-known artists, this celebratory exhibition explores avant-garde innovations of the late nineteenth through mid-twentieth centuries, as well as the groundbreaking activities of six pioneering arts patrons who brought to light some of the most significant artists of their day and established the Guggenheim Foundation’s identity as a forward-looking institution. This exhibition showcases the museum’s exceptional modern holdings as organized through the perspectives of six proponents of the avant-garde who intersected with the Guggenheim Foundation in the early decades of its history and gave their personal collections, in whole or in part, to the institution.
Visionaries includes important works by artists such as Alexander Calder, Paul Cézanne, Marc Chagall, Vasily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Fernand Léger, Piet Mondrian, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, and Vincent van Gogh.
Of these visionaries, foremost is the museum’s founder, Solomon R. Guggenheim, who, with support from his trusted advisor, the German-born artist Hilla Rebay, set aside a more traditional collecting focus to become a great champion of nonobjective art—a strand of abstraction with spiritual aims, epitomized by the work of Vasily Kandinsky. Amassed against the backdrop of economic crisis and war in the 1930s and 1940s, Guggenheim’s unparalleled modern holdings formed the basis of his foundation, established eighty years ago in 1937 with the goal of encouraging art, art education, and enlightenment for the public.
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation’s formative collection was subsequently shaped through major acquisitions from contemporaries who shared Guggenheim’s pioneering spirit. These acquisitions include a group of prized Impressionist and early School of Paris masterworks from Justin K. Thannhauser; the eclectic Expressionist inventory of émigré art dealer Karl Nierendorf; the rich holdings of abstract and Surrealist painting and sculpture from self-proclaimed “art addict” Peggy Guggenheim, Solomon’s niece; and key examples from the estates of artists Katherine S. Dreier and Hilla Rebay, both pivotal in promoting modern art in America. Highlights from each of these collections feature prominently in Visionaries and convey a narrative on avant-garde innovation in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Visionaries offers a rare opportunity to explore in-depth key artists represented among the museum’s holdings, such as Kandinsky and Klee, through multiple examples that reflect the shared interest in their work among the six featured patrons. The exhibition includes nearly twenty-five works from the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, seldom displayed outside of the Venice palazzo, including canvases by Max Ernst, René Magritte, and Yves Tanguy, and sculptures by Joseph Cornell and Alberto Giacometti. Among this group, Jackson Pollock’s Alchemy (1947), considered among his finest paintings and a celebrated icon of postwar abstraction, will be shown in the United States for the first time in almost fifty years. More than a dozen works on paper by Picasso and Van Gogh, rarely on view to the public, will also be on view. Additionally, sculptures by Edgar Degas and paintings by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Gauguin, and Édouard Manet will be placed on the ramps for the occasion of the exhibition. In May, a fresh selection of works on paper by artists including Klee, Picasso, and Van Gogh will replace the first grouping.
Several conservation projects have been initiated as part of the planning of this anniversary exhibition. The preservation and comprehensive research of Picasso’s Woman Ironing (1904) was made possible through support from the Bank of America Art Conservation Project. Conservators had discovered the existence of a male portrait beneath the composition of Woman Ironing in 1989, but lacked the sophisticated technology and resources needed to precisely document the earlier work. The funding enabled the Guggenheim Conservation Department to conduct an in-depth, scholarly study of the earlier portrait, incorporating advanced imaging techniques as well as scientific analysis of pigments and historical research. Conservation treatment of the painting was a central component of the project, and comprised overall cleaning, stabilization, and editing of old and mismatched restorations.
The Bank of America Art Conservation Project also funded the preservation of Manet’s Woman in Evening Dress (1877–80), which will be on view in the late spring. The painting was studied by a group of curators, conservators, and scientists who traced the history of the work, and conducted an in-depth scientific investigation of the technique and materials including the discolored resin varnishes and retouchings on the surface. An intricate treatment removed this coating to reveal a cool palette, vigorous brushwork, and the fine details of Manet’s sketchy composition.
Red Lily Pads (1956), a painted steel sculpture by Alexander Calder spanning nearly 17 feet that will be suspended over the rotunda’s fountain, underwent extensive historical research and analysis, resulting in a beautifully integrated surface and restoration of the mobile’s proper balance. Conservators at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection restored The Studio (L'Atelier), 1928, an oil and crayon canvas by Picasso, before the work traveled to New York. Additionally, works by Josef Albers, Kandinsky, and Mondrian, among others, were treated in preparation for the exhibition.
In addition, Exploring “Alchemy”: Jackson Pollock will be on view in the Guggenheim’s Sackler Center for Arts Education concurrently with Visionaries. This didactic exhibition presents an in-depth investigation of Pollock’s materials and working process. Visitors will enter the world of the scientist and the conservator to follow the investigative process and the treatment of the complex surface of Alchemy.
A rich digital archive of enhanced collection information and materials including biographies of each of the six featured collectors, historical photographs, and videos will be available online during the exhibition at guggenheim.org/visionaries.
Founded in 1937, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation is dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of art, primarily of the modern and contemporary periods, through exhibitions, education programs, research initiatives, and publications. The Guggenheim network that began in the 1970s when the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, was joined by the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, has since expanded to include the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao (opened 1997), and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi (currently in development). Looking to the future, the Guggenheim Foundation continues to forge international collaborations that take contemporary art, architecture, and design beyond the walls of the museum.
Pablo Ruiz Picasso (Spanish, 1881–1973)
Woman Ironing (La repasseuse), 1904
Oil on canvas, 45¾” x 28¾” (116.2 x 73 cm)
© 2017 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
Bank of America is pleased to provide support for Matisse/Diebenkorn, the first major exhibition to explore the profound influence of French artist Henri Matisse (1869-1954) on the work of American artist Richard Diebenkorn (1922-1993). Co-organized by the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), the exhibition was on view at BMA from October 23, 2016 to January 29, 2017 and will be shown at SFMOMA from March 11, 2017 to May 29, 2017.
The landmark exhibition offers an unprecedented view of both artists. By presenting a new perspective on two of the twentieth century’s most extraordinary painters, it brings together 100 seminal paintings and drawings—40 by Matisse and 60 by Diebenkorn—that reveal the connections between the two artists in subject, style, color, and technique.
As one of America’s most acclaimed artists, Richard Diebenkorn is admired for his fluid style and bold exploration of both abstract and representational compositions. The exhibition unfolds across the arc of Diebenkorn’s career—from early abstractions, through his Bay Area figurative years, to his majestic Ocean Park series—all in direct dialogue with works that he knew and admired by Matisse. Diebenkorn grew up in San Francisco, and first discovered Matisse as a Stanford University art student in the early 1940s, and while visiting the Palo Alto home of Sarah Stein, sister-in-law of Gertrude Stein, one of Matisse’s first patrons. Over the next four decades, he pursued a serious study of the great French modernist’s work, drawing from his example to forge a style entirely his own.
Inspired by Matisse’s work, Diebenkorn took advantage of every opportunity to study the artist’s masterful paintings and drawings. While he was stationed in Quantico, Virginia, serving in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1943 to 1945, Diebenkorn made frequent trips to East Coast museums, visiting The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., the Baltimore Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. There, Diebenkorn experienced firsthand the artist’s motifs, palette, and techniques, all of which would resonate prominently in his own paintings and drawings. Over the course of his career, Diebenkorn continued to study Matisse’s works, visiting a major Matisse retrospective exhibition in Los Angeles in 1952, traveling to the Soviet Union in 1964 to view extensive collections of works by Matisse in the State Hermitage Museum and the Pushkin Museum, and a 1966 visit to an important Matisse retrospective in Los Angeles, where he viewed over 300 works by the French master.
Matisse’s influence on Diebenkorn is most visible in the younger artist’s figurative works from the 1950s and 1960s, including Chabot Valley (1955), Woman Seated in a Chair (1963) and Seated Figure with Hat (1967), but also evident in the structure, composition, and light of his earlier and later abstractions, such as Berkeley #5 (1953), Urbana #6 (1953) and Ocean Park #79 (1975).
Although they never met, both artists have a longstanding history in the Bay Area and deep connections to SFMOMA. Matisse’s expressive paintings were first introduced to San Francisco shortly after the 1906 earthquake, shocking the arts community with their startling colors and brushwork. The French artist made one visit to San Francisco, in 1930, and his very first West Coast survey was held at SFMOMA in 1936, a year after the museum was founded. Matisse’s work—specifically Woman with a Hat (1905), on view in the exhibition—has become a historical anchor of SFMOMA’s painting and sculpture collection.
Diebenkorn had deep personal and professional connections with the Bay Area, growing up in San Francisco’s Ingleside Terrace neighborhood and graduating from Lowell High School; attending Stanford University, the University of California, Berkeley and the San Francisco Art Institute (then the California School of Fine Arts); and teaching at both the San Francisco Art Institute and the California College of the Arts. He visited SFMOMA for the first time in 1945, and exhibited his work there for the first time in 1946.
Visitors to Matisse/Diebenkorn will have the unprecedented opportunity to view the artists’ compelling works side-by-side, revealing Diebenkorn’s deep connection with Matisse and in turn offering new insights into the French modern master’s enduring influence on one of the greatest post-war American painters. Continuing the exploration of artistic inspiration, an adjacent coda gallery will feature work by contemporary artists that relate to Matisse and Diebenkorn, including Rachel Harrison, Elizabeth Peyton and others.
Richard Diebenkorn (American, 1922 – 1993)
Oil and graphite on canvas
92” x 80” (233.7 x 203.2 cm)
Catalogue raisonné no. 3906
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Richard Diebenkorn and anonymous donors
Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University
© The Richard Diebenkorn Foundation
Paint the Revolution: Mexican Modernism, 1910-1950
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Bank of America is pleased to be the national sponsor of the most comprehensive exhibition of Mexican Modern art in the United States in more than 70 years. From June 25 to October 1, 2017, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, will present Paint the Revolution: Mexican Modernism, 1910-1950, drawn from both US and Mexican collections, and organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City,
Featuring portable murals and sculptures, easel paintings and prints, photographs, books and broadsheets, Paint the Revolution: Mexican Modernism, 1910-1950 sheds light on the artistic and intellectual influences and debates that took place between the Mexican Revolution and the immediate aftermath of World War II – periods of momentous change in Mexico. The exhibition charts the development of modern art there and the social, political, and cultural forces that shaped it over the course of nearly half a century. Featuring 225 works—including prints, photographs, books, newspapers, easel paintings, large-scale portable murals, and mural fragments—Paint the Revolution is unprecedented for its breadth and variety. The exhibition offers visitors the opportunity to see the emergence of Mexico as a center of modern art.
Paint the Revolution presents masterpieces by well-known figures such as Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and Rufino Tamayo. Also on display are works by many of their important contemporaries, including Manuel and Lola Álvarez Bravo, Miguel Covarrubias, Alfredo Ramos Martínez, Carlos Mérida, Roberto Montenegro, and Dr. Atl (Gerardo Murillo). Three historical murals by los tres grandes (“the three great ones”)—Orozco, Rivera, and Siqueiros—are digitally re-created and projected in the galleries.
Focusing on 40 years of artistic production across a wide variety of media, Paint the Revolution is divided into four chronological sections, providing an in-depth understanding of the factors that shaped the development of modern art in Mexico during a period of political and social upheaval:
Modernism and “mexicanidad” opens the exhibition with a group of works created in Mexico City during the revolutionary decade of the 1910s. It features artists influenced by avant-garde styles, including Impressionism, Symbolism and Cubism, and whose works reflect both ancient and modern Mexican culture; The section Paint the Revolution reveals the context in which Mexican artists’ works took a radical turn in the 1920s; In the City shows that at the same time, in the 1920s, two groups of avant-garde artists emerged: the Estridentistas and the Contemporáneos. Attuned to international trends in painting, these groups rejected historical and traditional subjects in favor of cosmopolitan themes and scenes of everyday modern life; Paint America covers the 1920s and 1930s, when an emerging market for Mexican art in the United States drew painters like Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, and Diego Rivera northward. This section of the exhibition examines works generated by these prominent artists during multiyear sojourns in the United States; In Times of War is the final section, as the exhibition explores the resurgence of politically and socially charged art from the mid-1930s to the 1950s, as both national and international events continued to influence Mexican culture.
Self-Portrait on the Border Line Between Mexico and the United States, 1932, by Frida Kahlo (Colección Maria y Manuel Reyero, New York)
Credits: © 2016 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Nation to Nation: Treaties Between the United States and American Indian Nations
Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian
Bank of America is pleased to sponsor Nation to Nation: Treaties Between the United States and American Indian Nations, on view at The Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian from September 21, 2014, through fall 2018.
Nation to Nation, 10 years in the making, brings together the largest historical collection of treaties made between the United States and American Indian Nations, along with more than 125 related artifacts, photographs and contemporary objects. It is divided into five chapters: Introduction to Treaties; Serious Diplomacy; Bad Acts, Bad Paper; Great Nations Keep Their Word; and The Future of Treaties.
Introduction to Treaties provides an overview of the vastly different perspectives held between non-native settlers and Native Americans, from concepts of land ownership, civic organization and leadership to the very nature and purpose of diplomacy.
Serious Diplomacy reveals the initial good intentions of settlers of the early republic, seeking security and peaceful coexistence. One of the earliest treaties on display is the Treaty of Canandaigua, signed in 1794 by members of the Iroquois Confederacy, Cornplanter, Red Jacket and Handsome Lake, and President George Washington. It allowed for the establishment of Indian territories and provided annual compensation to tribes in exchange for free passage through their lands and access to their harbors and rivers.
Bad Acts, Bad Paper highlights the events that transpired in the 1800s, when the United States’ territorial ambitions led it to craft treaties designed to confiscate Indian lands and push Native Nations west of the Mississippi. These nations also fell victim to the competing interests and conflicts between individual states and the federal government. Many states sought and won exemptions from federal treaties and went on to take the law, and Indian territories, into their own hands.
Great Nations Keep Their Word focuses on the 1900s, when the surviving Native Nations more successfully appealed for the enforcement of treaties and their rights. Efforts by Congress to nullify many pre-existing treaties were met with strong opposition and eventual defeat, while others would ultimately be struck down in U.S. courts. These victories helped to restore both the dignity and self-determination of the Native Nations.
The Future of Treaties focuses on the impact that existing treaties continue to have on relations between the United States and Native Nations and points to a future likely to be filled with both struggle and hope.
Thomas Jefferson peace medal, 1801, owned by Powder Face (Northern Inunaina/Arapaho), Oklahoma Bronze Copper alloy, hide, porcupine quills, feathers, dye, metal cones
Photo credit: Walter Larrim
The Met: HD Live in Schools
Major funding for The Met: HD Live in Schools was made possible by Bank of America, with program support provided through a partnership with the New York City Department of Education and other school districts across the country.
Through HD Live in Schools, teachers, students and parents can experience the world’s greatest conductors, directors, musicians and singers in riveting productions. The program, which uses opera to teach music, theater, history and English language arts, reaches students in five New York City high schools and 40 school districts in 30 states throughout the country. Teachers receive educator guides and annual training opportunities that enable them to conduct in-class workshops, which prepare students to attend live movie theater transmissions of operas—direct from the Met stage—all free of charge.
Each opera is chosen based on a variety of considerations, including the opera’s applicability to the general curriculum and engaging content for young audiences. Last season’s featured operas included Richard Strauss' Elektra, Alban Berg's Lulu, Giuseppe Verdi's Otello, as well as revivals of Giacomo Puccini's Turandot and Madama Butterfly.
Elektra is the riveting ancient Greek tale of the title character’s quest for vengeance for the murder of her father, Agamemnon. Renowned soprano Nina Stemme played the title role.
Lulu is considered one of the most important stageworks of the twentieth century. It tells the story of a young dancer who rises in German society through her relationships with wealthy men, but who later meets a tragic fate. Soprano Marlis Petersen played the title role.
Giuseppe Verdi’s Otello, based on Shakespeare’s masterpiece and originally performed at the Met in 1891, brought together an outstanding cast led by Aleksandr Antonenko in the title role.
Two revivals of Giacomo Puccini’s work were brought to the Met stage last season, Anthony Minghella’s production of Madama Butterfly and Franco Zeffirelli’s production of Turnadot. Set in the port city of Nagasaki at the end of the twentieth century, Madama Butterfly is the story of a young geisha who clings to the belief that her arrangement with a visiting American naval officer is a genuine marriage. Soprano Kristine Opolais reprised her role in the original production. Puccini’s Turnadot—his final opera—is an epic fairy tale about a Chinese princess whose riddles her suitors must solve, on pain of death if mistaken, in order to win her hand. Sopranos Lise Lindstrom and Nina Stemme took turns in the title role.
Photo Credits: EXPLORING PARTNERSHIPS: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera.