Gordon Parks, Muhammed Ali, 1970. Gelatin silver print.
100 Years and Counting is one of three inaugural exhibitions in the Minnesota Museum of American Art’s new facility in the Pioneer Endicott building, opening in December 2018. The exhibition features approximately 45 works from the M’s remarkable collection of American art, from 100 years ago to today. It invites a tumble into the depth and breadth of the M’s collection: early 20th century paintings, photographs, sculpture by Paul Manship, incredible ink and pastel drawings, mid-century studio craft, sculpture, prints, Native American art, wood sculpture by George Morrison, contemporary works, up-to-the-minute recent acquisitions by outstanding living artists.
100 Years and Counting is organized for stunning visual impact and arresting moments of comparison and conversation among artworks from differing eras, genres, media, and perspectives. Like the juxtaposition of Patrick DesJarlait’s striking watercolor Red Lake Fishermen and Cameron Booth’s Indian Camp, Leech Lake Indian Reservation, or Margaret Bourke-White’s Gold Miners and Alec Soth’s oil field worker, Brian, Williston, ND. The exhibition brings out old favorites that haven’t been seen in years, like Jerome Hill’s 1965 Woman in a Striped Skirt, and brand-new acquisitions, like Teo Nguyen’s phenomenal Minnesota landscape from 2017.
This exhibition proves the point that the Minnesota Museum of American Art has been around awhile—over 100 years, in fact—and that its American art collection reflects that visual trajectory. It also shows that the new M, in this stunning new building and home, is likewise continuing to grow, to thrive, to build—indeed, counting our years and our way into a new era of significance, art, and visual engagement.
(Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Museum of American Art.)