We asked Rice Gallery curator Joshua Fischer for his top picks of museum and gallery exhibitions in major cities across the United States.
Hauser Wirth & Schimmel
Revolution in the Making: Abstract Sculpture by Women, 1947–2016
Through Sept. 4, 2016
See a historic flour mill transformed into a museum-caliber place for contemporary art by commercial gallery powerhouse Hauser & Wirth in collaboration with curator Paul Schimmel. “Revolution in the Making” looks at how women have changed art history and how we understand abstract sculpture since 1945. With nearly 100 works by 34 artists, the exhibition is an incredibly ambitious and historically significant undertaking.
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
“Robert Irwin: All the Rules Will Change”
Through Sept. 5
Robert Irwin is a pioneer of the California Light and Space movement, which includes artists such as James Turrell who use minimal means to draw attention to our perceptual experience of architectural spaces. Some Rice alums may remember Irwin’s temporary installation on Rice’s campus in the cloister between Lovett Hall and Sewall Hall in 1987. The Hirshhorn exhibition surveys Irwin’s work from 1958 to 1970. Closer to home, you can view a new permanent installation by Irwin at the Chinati Foundation in Marfa, Texas, which opened in July.
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
“Kusama: At the End of the Universe”
Through Sept. 18
Rice alums may remember Yayoi Kusama’s “Dots Obsession” from 1997 at Rice Gallery. The gallery was transformed into a vivid yellow, dreamlike space filled with large balloons and with every surface covered by Kusama’s signature polka dots. She is back in Houston with recent installations that will transport and envelop viewers with her refined use of pattern, light and reflection, which make her small spaces feel infinite and vast.
NEW YORK CITY
Whitney Museum of American Art
“Stuart Davis: In Full Swing”
Through Sept. 25
Visit the brand new Whitney building by architect Renzo Piano and indulge in the vibrant, colorful paintings of Stuart Davis (1892–1964). One of the most important American modern painters, Davis merged a love of the bold styles and colors of American advertising with the latest trends in European abstract, avant-garde painting.
“As Essential as Dreams:Self-Taught Art From theCollection of Stephanie and John Smither” Through Oct. 16
This exhibition is a promised gift to the Menil from Houston-based collectors Stephanie and John Smither, who have amassed remarkable works by self-taught and visionary artists from around the world. These artists made works not necessarily intended for the gallery or museum, and they are reminders of the relentlessness and power of the creative spirit. It is a must-see.