December 23, 2000

Claude Monet, Les Villas à Bordighera, Musée d'Orsay

LES VILLAS A BORDIGHERA, 1884, tableau de CLAUDE MONET, a été acquis par l'Etat pour le musée d'Orsay, Paris

L'annonce a été faite par la Ministre de la Culture et de la Communication, Catherine Tasca, dans un communiqué du 22 décembre 2000.

Cette toile a été peinte pour Berthe Morisot à Giverny en 1884, à l’issue d’un séjour en Ligurie, au bord du golfe de Gênes. Jalon essentiel de l’œuvre de Monet dont la palette se transforme radicalement à cette époque, elle représente le jardin Moreno que le peintre qualifiait de « paradis terrestre ». Sur la droite apparaît la villa édifiée vers 1880 par Charles Garnier, architecte de l’Opéra de Paris, pour le baron Bischoffsheim, et à l’arrière-plan la villa Sant’Ampelio, deux lieux familiers à l’artiste.

Les Villas à Bordighera de Claude Monet avait fait l’objet, en mai 1992, d’une interdiction de sortie du territoire français. Afin de permettre son maintien dans le patrimoine national, le groupe GAN s’était porté acquéreur du tableau et l’avait déposé au musée d’Orsay, aux termes d’un accord conclu pour dix ans avec l’Etat en application des dispositions prévues par la loi sur le mécénat culturel, qui permet aux compagnies d’assurances d’inscrire dans leurs provisions techniques les investissements réalisés pour l’acquisition d’oeuvres d’art.

Cette acquisition d'un important tableau de Claude Monet a pu être réalisé grâce à une importante participation du Fonds du Patrimoine et au concours de mécènes privés.

December 17, 2000

Tatsuo Miyajima at Luhring Augustine, New York

Tatsuo Miyajima: Totality of Life
Luhring Augustine, New York
December 16, 2000 – January 27, 2001

Luhring Augustine presents an exhibition of new work by Tatsuo Miyajima, titled “Totality of Life.”  This major exhibition consists of three installations, each concerned with illustrating concepts of human relations with time and space. The largest installation in the main gallery, called Floating Time, is a site where the viewer can actively perceive time, as counting digital numbers literally float through space, interacting with the installation and the viewer. 

As Tatsuo Miyajima has explained in an artist statement, “Oriental philosophy never recognized ‘time’ independently. ‘Time’ is understood as being in relation with space and environment. The notion of ‘time’ is primarily realized by human beings and life. In the East, life is understood as the repetition of birth and death. Thus, the abstract concept of ‘time,’ parallel to life with continuous transformation, is accordingly unconditional with neither a start nor an end…The ‘time’ shown in my [work] simultaneously represents the existence of the human being and life itself.  My counters indicate 1 through 9 and not ‘0,’ then total blackout (which symbolizes death) and repeat the counting process again.  It undoubtedly suggests the repetition of life.”

Tatsuo Miyajima’s work has been internationally collected and exhibited. Most notably Miyajima was chosen to represent the Japanese pavilion at the 1999 Venice Bienniale.  His work can be found in the collections of the Dallas Museum of Contemporary Art, the San Francisco MOMA, the Museum of Modern Art, Shiga, Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, the MCA Chicago as well as many others.


December 10, 2000

Dada and Surrealist Art from Arturo Schwarz Collection at Israel Museum, Jerusalem

On december 2000, the Israel Museum, Jerusalem presented its first comprehensive exhibition of the Vera, Silvia and Arturo Schwarz Collection of Dada and Surrealist Art.

Dreaming with Open Eyes includes over 300 works by leading artists including Duchamp, Man Ray, Ernst, Breton, and Goya. Donated in 1998, this unique collection of over 750 works of art by some 200 artists were on view at the Israel Museum from December 22, 2000 through June 2001.

The gift of the Arturo Schwarz Collection, together with a library of over one thousand related books, pamphlets and artifacts donated in 1991, has transformed the Israel Museum into the largest repository in the world of Dada and Surrealist art and a global center for the study and display of these movements. "Dreaming with Open Eyes" takes advantage of Schwarz's scholarly insight to reveal the importance of the works on view, and incorporates his personal approach to the material in the exhibition. Paintings, drawings, sculptures, ready-mades, photographs and prints are complemented by unique items from the Museum's Dada and Surrealist library of art periodicals, documents, letters, and artists' books.

The presentation in Jerusalem will be followed by a major international tour. The exhibition will travel to the San Francisco Museum of Fine Arts, February - April 2002; the Art Gallery of Ontario, June - September 2002; and a third North American venue; and the Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, Florida, and conclude with two venues in Japan. James Snyder, Director of the Israel Museum states: "Our Museum has a long history of important holdings in Modern Art and particularly in the fields of Surrealism and Dada. The Arturo Schwarz gift in 1998, on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the State of Israel, consolidates our position as a world center for these two movements, so central to the aesthetic and intellectual progress of the 20th century. We are proud that, in "Dreaming with Open Eyes", we are able to expose the full riches of these holdings and then to share them on tour in North America and in Japan."

The Dada movement emerged in Europe and the United States in reaction to the horrors of World War I. This enclave of artists rebelled against artistic convention and sought to subvert the existing social and political order. Artists such as Marcel Janco, Raoul Hausmann, Max Ernst, and Francis Picabia represent this movement through works exemplify the key tenants of Dada: the accidental, the absurd, protest, and criticism.

Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray
The revolutionary work of Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray had a profound influence on Dada and Surrealist artists and was central to later trends in twentieth-century art. Duchamp and Man Ray met in New York in 1915, and from that time on were active, both independently and jointly, in avant-garde circles in New York and Paris. Arturo Schwarz met the two artists in the 1950's and demonstrated his appreciation for their work by arranging exhibitions, acquiring dozens of works, and composing scholarship on them. Seventy works by Man Ray and Duchamp reflect their fertile imaginations, and their preoccupation with humor, playfulness, and eroticism.

Forerunners of Surrealism
The Arturo Schwarz collection includes a sizable body of pre-Surrealist work, which, like the Surrealist movement that would follow, demonstrates a timeless interest in dreams, the supernatural, and the irrational. This portion of the collection includes paintings, prints, and drawings from the 16th through the 20th centuries by artists such as Durer, Goya, Moreau, and Redon, along with tribal masks and artifacts from Africa, Oceania, and North America. Surrealism The works of dozens of Surrealist artists from the 1920's to the 1980's are arranged in the exhibition according to visual and thematic criteria. The ideological platform of the Surrealist movement, formulated by Andre Breton in the 1920's, called for a new way of seeing. Disappointed by modern Western culture, many artists and writers had been inspired by Dada and had adopted a nihilist or anarchic stance. But Surrealism did not simply advocate subversion, it called for a change in values. The movement sought to stimulate the imagination, to expand the limits of awareness, and to tap into a non-rational, subconscious psychological realm, like that revealed in dreams and madness. Among the artists represented are some of the members of the original circle of the Surrealist movement in the 1920's and 1930's, such as Andre Breton, Joan Miro, Yves Tanguy, Andre Masson, and Max Ernst. Women artists including Claude Cahun, Remedios Varo, Kay Sage, and Dorothea Tanning are prominently featured among the Surrealist group on display, many of which achieved central standing in the canon of 20th century art history.

The Library
The final component of the exhibition is drawn from the Museum's extensive library of Dada and Surrealist materials, including a display of portraits of Surrealist artists and writers immortalized by their photographer and painter colleagues, as well as a selection of original Dada and Surrealist literary documents. The collaboration between artists revealed through these portraits and publications demonstrates the spiritual bond that existed among members of the movement.

About Arturo Schwarz
Scholar and collector Arturo Schwarz was born in 1924 in Alexandria, Egypt to Jewish parents. In his youth he was very active in clandestine political circles and was arrested a number of times prior to his expulsion from Egypt in 1949. Settling in Milan in the early 1950's, he opened a publishing house and a bookstore that evolved into the Schwarz Gallery, which closed in 1975. The gallery held exhibitions of the best Dada and Surrealist artists and of contemporary artists from throughout the world. Simultaneously, Schwarz wrote poetry, published scholarly books including a catalogue raisonne of the works of Marcel Duchamp, gave lectures, and organized international Dada and Surrealist exhibitions. His intense involvement in the Surrealist movement and his personal acquaintance with many of its members has made him a leading authority on its history. "Dreaming with Open Eyes" is curated by Tamar Manor-Friedman and is accompanied by a comprehensive 250-page catalogue, which includes an illustrated inventory of the works in the Arturo Schwarz collection in the Israel Museum.