Planes, Trains & Automobiles
July 26, 2018 - May 5, 2019 | Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation Gallery
Whether it's revving up your engine to head out on a cross-country road trip or jumping on your bicycle to pick up a gallon of milk across town, transportation is an important part of life. We're kicking off a year-long celebration of all the things that get us from point A to point B this summer. Experience transportation as muse in Planes, Trains & Automobiles with prints, paintings, and photographs from the museum's collection including works by Ralph Steiner, O. Winston Link, Christine Chagnoux, Charles Orloff, NASA, and Roger Brown.
Brian Bress: Pictures Become You
October 13, 2018 - April 14, 2019 | Fred and Laura Ruth Bidwell Gallery
Brian Bress' complex art enterprise combines character development, costume design and creation, as well as performance and film production. Figures that draw, cut, saw, arrange and pose slowly reveal invented worlds that form, unfurl and disappear again w3ithin the wind of flat-screen television monitors. Humor and playfulness are contained within the slow, deliberate movements of Bress' figures, which feel familiar-a combination of cartoon- and puppet-like beings. Describing his work as existing somewhere between painting and video, Bress states "I enjoy imagining a world where the mot unlikely of things come to life."
September 22, 2018 - March 3, 2019 | Judith Bear Isroff Gallery
In the mid-twentieth century, abstract painters pushed back against the venerable tradition of easel painting, applying pigment to canvas sprawled directly on the studio floor. A generation of artists working in the late 1960s and 1970s went further, manipulating canvas or paper in ways that fabric is commonly handled; folding, scrunching or sewing. "The Fabricators" bring together the work of four abstract artists who treated traditional art supplies like one might treat cloth.
Jeff Donaldson: Dig
October 27, 2018 - January 21, 2019 | Karl and Bertl Arnstein Galleries
Jeff Donaldson: Dig, the artist’s first museum retrospective, explores Donaldson’s four-decade career. In 1968, Donaldson co-founded the African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists (AfriCOBRA). AfriCOBRA sought to create a new kind of art that was not only politically engaged but reflected contemporary black culture and appealed specifically to a black audience. Featuring paintings, prints and mixed media works, "Dig" reflects on Donaldson's deep belief in the responsibility of an artists to create work that is both socially relevant and visually striking.
Allison Zuckerman: Pirate and Muse
October 27, 2018 - January 21, 2019 | Karl and Bertl Arnstein Galleries
Allison Zuckerman pillages Western art history, dismantling bodies and piecing together new ones that expose vulnerability and imperfection. Zuckerman’s figures are amalgams of body parts, clothing and background elements from artists [all male] throughout history, and Disney and other pop culture imagery. Paintings and sculptures made for Pirate and Muse evidence her embrace of the label “pirate,” as a plunderer of art history who brazenly steals from other artists.
FRONT International Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art
July 14, 2018 - September 30, 2018 | Karl and Bertl Arnstein Galleries, Beatrice Knapp McDowell Grand Lobby
For the premiere edition of FRONT International, artists from the U.S. and around the globe will offer perspectives on aspects of “The American City” at the Akron Art Museum. Works by sixteen artists—several newly created for the Akron Art Museum—include a major video installation, sculpture, photography and mixed media objects that will occupy spaces throughout the museum. The exhibition examines how we as individuals move through the urban landscape. Artwork reflects on ways that technology, communications, advertising, industry and popular culture shape socio-economic and environmental conditions.
Jerry Birchfield: Asleep in the Dust
March 24, 2018 - September 23, 2018 | Fred and Laura Ruth Bidwell Gallery
The multimedia work of Jerry Birchfield thoughtfully investigates photographic processes and concepts. Obscuring his camera-based images with layers of darkroom processes, Birchfield calls attention to the gap between his photographs’ original subjects and the abstracted printed image that you see. The resulting gelatin silver prints are complemented by wall relief sculptures that assert the physical nature of printed photographs. The exhibition highlights the transformational role of the artist in producing objects of meaning from such materials through an iterative process of framing, reproduction and display.
Frameworks: Paintings by Dragana Crnjak, Andrea Joki and Matthew Kolodziej
March 3, 2018 - September 9, 2018 | Judith Bear Isroff Gallery
Dragana Crnjak (Youngstown), Andrea Joki (Cleveland) and Matthew Kolodziej (Akron) each approach painting as a process of inquiry into the way we understand time and space. The artists are particularly interested in the concept of time being fluid rather than linear. That fluidity is easily illustrated in our digital age—time can be visually compressed, drawn-out and even layered. Interwoven into that equation is how memory becomes clouded or fragmented over time.
Ed Emberley: Better You Than Me
January 11, 2018 - July 15, 2018 | Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation Gallery
"…while friendly to any age group, it [Ed Emberley: Better You Than Me] doesn’t talk down to anyone. Here we have a museum that is trying to engage the audience in a way that is educational as well as a partnership, allowing us to see the exhibit in a place full of meaning and quality for every patron. Shows like Ed Emberley: Better You Than Me are why the Akron Art Museum should be such a point of pride for the community."—Anderson Turner, "Art review: See the process of creating a children's book in Ed Emberley," Akron Beacon Journal. Using simple shapes and lines, beloved illustrator and picture book artist Ed Emberley has created enchanting worlds for generations of young people, while also giving them the tools to create worlds of their own. Ed Emberley: Better You Than Me opens on January 11, 2018 and includes an array of dazzling artwork from the artist’s personal archive of hand drawn sketches, woodblock prints, mock-ups, and first edition books.
Jun Kaneko: Blurred Lines
February 17, 2018 - June 3, 2018 | Karl and Bertl Arnstein Galleries
Among the most acclaimed artists working in contemporary ceramics today, Jun Kaneko has spent decades pushing the boundaries of ceramics, sculpture and painting, repeatedly blurring the lines that have traditionally separated the world of fine art and craft. Jun Kaneko: Blurred Lines, opening February 17, 2018, presents an array of the artist’s monumental works while providing insight into his thinking and artistic process. Informed by early experiences in a Zen Garden at Ryōan-ji in Kyoto, Japan, Kaneko’s work contains ongoing references to rhythm and pattern and sound and silence. His artworks are often covered with stripes, simple geometric shapes, and spirals and dots, suggesting opposing but complementary forces of light and darkness, mass and space and present and past.