Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, April 17, 2015

Hunter Museum showcasing diverse new exhibits

From the Alice E. and Joseph H. Davenport, Jr. Collection: “Tête de Fillette” by Mary Cassatt (1904). - Image provided

The Hunter Museum of American Art is showcasing several new diverse and fascinating exhibits, including one of the most significant exhibitions the museum has showcased in the last several years.

Hunter Museum is showcasing six of Los Angeles native Gajin Fujita’s large-scale paintings and several related drawings. Embracing two worlds, Fujita’s works combine elements from traditional Japanese ukiyo-e woodblock prints with elements of urban street art. In these works, graffiti, spray paint, stencils, and markers mix with classically applied gold leaf and acrylic paint. Ukiyo-e were created from the 17th to 19th centuries, and originally depicted courtesans and kabuki actors. Over time, they came to feature characters from Japanese history and folklore. Fujita uses the same subjects, but his samurai and geisha take on the LA urban scene with references to gangs, art history, sports teams, and American pop culture setting the stage.

The Hunter Museum will host Gajin Fujita as its “Art Wise” program speaker on Thursday, May 14 from 6 to 7 p.m. Attendees will have to opportunity to learn more about Fujita’s work, his process, and his career. The “Art Wise: Distinguished Speakers at the Hunter” series is sponsored by the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee Community Trust with additional support from Sally and Buddy Faulkner.

Another new exhibit, “New on View II,” showcases a number of the museum’s latest acquisitions. In the last three to four years, the museum has collected a variety of works ranging from historic paintings to contemporary photography to video art. Works in the permanent collection galleries rotate often, so this exhibition gives the visitor a chance to look back at a period of time and see how the Hunter’s collection has grown, changed, and diversified. Visitors will also see more recent acquisitions on display throughout the permanent collection galleries.

For a limited time, the museum is also showcasing the private collection of Alice E. and Joseph H. Davenport, Jr., a collection featuring 19 works by many well-known American artists such as Georgia O’Keeffe, Charles Burchfield, Mary Cassatt, and William Merritt Chase.

Alice (Hedy) and Joseph (Joe) Davenport were passionate patrons of the arts in Chattanooga and founding supporters of the Hunter Museum. “Our parents were infected by the art bug,” said Hedy and Joe’s children. “They began collecting art of great significance after getting involved in the Chattanooga Arts Association, the predecessor of the Hunter Museum, in the 1960s. They believed having a thriving art museum in our community was important for Chattanooga, and they worked hard to build a strong, dynamic museum for the entire community to share.”

Gajin Fujita, “New on View II,” and “The Alice E. and Joseph H. Davenport, Jr. Collection” are on display now through Sunday, June 7. General admission is $9.95 for adults and $4.95 for children.

Opening to the public on June 27, “Monet and American Impressionism” will feature several Monet paintings and highlight 25 American artists who launched a new way of painting in response to French Impressionism. The exhibition, a collaboration between the Harn Museum of Art in Gainesville, the Telfair Museums in Savannah, and the Hunter Museum, will present roughly 50 paintings and 20 prints dated between 1880-1920 by many of the leading figures in American Impressionism, such as Mary Cassatt, William Merritt Chase, Childe Hassam, Willard Metcalf, Theodore Robinson, John Henry Twachtman, and J. Alden Weir. These artists adapted the innovations of French Impressionism and ultimately paved the way to a uniquely American style of painting in the 19th century.

“This exhibition will give visitors the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to explore Monet’s work alongside that of many of the most notable American artists of all time,” said Nandini Makrandi, chief curator at Hunter Museum.

The unique exhibition presented exclusively in Gainesville, Chattanooga, and Savannah, will include landscapes, portraits, intimate depictions of women and children, and images of modern life such as urban views and popular leisure activities.

General admission for this exhibition will be $15 for adults and $7.50 for children.

Hunter Museum will offer a variety of programs and events in celebration of the “Monet and American Impressionism” exhibition, including special members-only receptions, renowned guest speakers, and public programming.

An exclusive French dinner, “A Celebration of Impressionist Art,” which will be held at 212 Market Restaurant on May 29 to help support the exhibit. The museum will bring in a premier French chef from New York, Christian Delouvrier, to prepare the dinner for guests. Seating is very limited. Details can be found at www.huntermuseum.org/acelebrationofimpressionistart.

To learn more about membership, upcoming exhibitions, and other happenings at the Hunter Museum, visit www.huntermuseum.org.

Source: Some material from The Hunter Museum of American Art

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