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Three Masters Breaking the Bonds of Convention

March 3, 2011

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Buffalo, NY – Spotlight on the Collection—Artists in Depth: Arp, Miró, Calder, presented by The Buffalo News, features an array of works in a variety of media by Jean Arp (French, born Germany, 1886–1966), Joan Miró (Spanish, 1893–1983), and Alexander Calder (American, 1898–1976). This exhibition will highlight the Gallery’s extensive holdings of the work of these three masterful artists, who pushed color, line, and form beyond convention.  The exhibition is organized by Curator for the Collection Holly E. Hughes, who notes, “audiences will enjoy the wit, inventiveness, and improvisational imagery that all three artists bring to their works.” 

Arp, Miró, and Calder met early in their artistic careers in 1920s Paris, an inspirational destination for artists and a vibrant center of music and dance. The relationships formed by these artists, during a period in art history often referred to as “the greatest laboratory of modern art,” resulted in some of the most innovative visual iconographies of the twentieth century.

Paris was also the creative center for Surrealism—an art movement that stressed the subconscious significance of imagery—and Surrealist theory in the visual arts, politics, and society.  Calder, though not closely associated with Surrealism, was undoubtedly influenced by the movement’s key players during his time in Paris. It was Arp, in fact, who named Calder’s static constructions “stabiles,” and, in 1931, the Surrealist Marcel Duchamp suggested Calder call his whimsical, kinetic works “mobiles.”  But Calder developed the closest friendship with Miró; the two bonded over discussions about Surrealist theory, and through shared interests and influences.

Spotlight on the Collection—Artists in Depth: Arp, Miró, Calder, presented by The Buffalo News, is the second installment in a new series of ongoing exhibitions drawn from the Albright-Knox’s Collection centering on important artists whose works the Gallery has acquired in depth. This series aims to reach beyond the Gallery’s celebrated masterworks to highlight a broad range of paintings, sculptures, and works on paper from selected artists’ careers. Many of the works on view are less known to Albright-Knox audiences, not having been exhibited in some time; seen alongside the Gallery’s more well-known works, they will bring context and greater understanding to the chosen artists’ practices and their art-historical legacies.

This exhibition is organized by Curator for the Collection Holly E. Hughes. It opens March 25, 2011, and will be on view through April 1, 2012.

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Press Images

The images below are available for use by the media. For high-resolution versions of these images, please contact Jim Baker at 716.270.8320, or Maria Scully-Morreale at 716.270.8229.