High Showcases Decorative Arts and Design Acquisitions in New Installation
ATLANTA, June 11, 2008 – This month the High will present Face Offs: Decorative Arts and Design, showcasing recent contemporary decorative arts acquisitions paired with similar works from earlier art-historical periods from the permanent collection. On view from June 21 through November 23, 2008, the eight works on display include the debut of two major commissions from Dutch Droog Design collective artists Jurgen Bey and Tejo Remy, "Treetrunk Bench High Table" and "You Can't Lay Down Your Memory" Chest of Drawers, both of which draw upon local sources for materials. The old and the new are juxtaposed in dialogue with one another through similarities and differences in shape, form, materials, utility, manufacture and prevailing tastes.
"Our newest acquisitions represent some of the most important designs from the late 20th and early 21st centuries," said Ron T. Labaco, the High's Curator of Decorative Arts. "Shown in the context of masterworks from other eras, they help illustrate the cycle of innovation, tradition and cross-fertilization that has recurred throughout decorative arts and design history. It will be interesting to see what aspects of these new designs will influence the look and feel of the future."
Comparative examples include Ron Arad's molded and woven aluminum "Blo-Void 1 Chair" (2006) and Gebrüder Thonet's bentwood and woven cane "Rocking Chair" (ca. 1885), Tejo Remy's haphazard "You Can't Lay Down Your Memory" Chest of Drawers (2008), Charles and Ray Eames' geometrically structured "ESU (Eames Storage Unit)" (1953–1955), North Carolina potter Mark Hewitt's massive "That's What I'm Talking About!" Vase (2007) and English ceramics manufacturers John and William Turner's monumental "Punch Bowl" (1800–1810).
Decorative Arts and Design at the High Museum of Art
The High Museum of Art's decorative arts and design collection features 2,175 objects, representing the most comprehensive survey of American decorative arts in the Southeast, and is among the most significant collections in the nation. The Virginia Carroll Crawford Collection of American Decorative Arts positioned the High as a leader in collecting and preserving works in this genre. The Crawford Collection, given over the course of five years between 1979 and 1983, includes major pieces of furniture, silver, porcelain and specially designed serving items produced by Tiffany and Company. Other notable gifts include the Frances and Emory Cocke Collection of English ceramics. Recent acquisitions include key additions of Gerrit Rietveld's "Red/Blue Chair" and Marcel Breuer's "Lounge Chair."
High Museum of Art
The High Museum of Art, founded in 1905 as the Atlanta Art Association, is the leading art museum in the southeastern United States. With more than 11,000 works of art in its permanent collection, the High Museum of Art has an extensive anthology of 19th- and 20th-century American and decorative art; significant holdings of European paintings; a growing collection of African-American art; and burgeoning collections of modern and contemporary art, photography and African art. The High is also dedicated to supporting and collecting works by Southern artists and is distinguished as the only major museum in North America to have a curatorial department specifically devoted to the field of folk and self-taught art. The High's Media Arts department produces acclaimed annual film series and festivals of foreign, independent and classic cinema. In November 2005, the High opened three new buildings by architect Renzo Piano that more than doubled the Museum's size, creating a vibrant "village for the arts" at the Woodruff Arts Center in midtown Atlanta. For more information about the High, please visit www.High.org.
The Woodruff Arts Center
The Woodruff Arts Center is the largest arts center in the Southeast as well as one of the four largest in the nation. The Woodruff is unique in that it combines five visual and performing-arts divisions on one campus as one not-for-profit organization. Opened in 1968, the Woodruff Arts Center is home to the Alliance Theatre, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the High Museum of Art, Young Audiences and the 14th Street Playhouse.
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