Ackland Art Museum in Chapel Hill, NC

I’m in Chapel Hill this weekend for a wedding, and spent the day exploring the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Not only was it fun to see college students out and about, but I never miss an art museum at a university. The Ackland Art Museum was a real treat.

Drawing Attention was a wonderful exhibition, and I particularly liked how it was arranged. The over 70 European and American drawings were presented in thematic groupings. Below are my favorites from each group.

Varieties of Portraiture

Raphael Soyer, Lovers, c. 1954
Crayon and watercolor

Fantasy and Transformation

Thornton Dial, Lady Holds the Long Neck Bird, 1991
Watercolor, graphite, and black conte crayon

German Modernism

Lionel Feininger, Shower Cloud, 1923
Pen and ink

Landscape and Architecture

Richard Parkes Bonington, The Gros-Horloge, Rouen, c. 1824
Graphite with fixative
Thomas Gainsborough, Wooded Landscape with Herdsmen and Cattle,
c. 1780s
Black and brown and white chalk, gray wash

I had not heard of Henry Speller before my recent visit to Minneapolis. You might recall seeing his wife Georgia Speller’s work in my post In the Presence of Our Ancestors. It was fun to recognize this artist’s work, as I had also seen some of his in Minneapolis.

Henry Speller, Train, 1987

Very Recent Arrivals

Minnie Evans, Untitled, 1963
Gouache and ink

American Abstraction of the 1960s

Robert Motherwell, Lyric Suite, 1965
Black and orange ink on rice paper

Image and Text in Contemporary Art

Elvis Studio, Elvis Blabworld, 2005

Christian Piety

Johan Wierix, Pieta, 1618
en and brown ink on vellum

Cartoon and Caricature

Harry Haenigsen, Plastic Surgeon, 1939
Pen and ink

There was also a nice exhibition Clouding: Shape and Sign in Asian Art which provided my necessary ceramics fix.

Cocoon-Shaped Storage Vessel, 206 BCE-220 CE
Stoneware with painted decoration
Pillow, 12th century, Zhang Family, Chinese, Song Dynasty
Stoneware with white and dark brown slip and colorless glaze
Covered Box with Mouse, c 1300
Porcelaneous stoneware

The following images are works that I particularly enjoyed from the Auckland’s permanent collection.

I absolutely adore British crime drama, and as I was looking for a new show to watch while I work in my studio, I came across a French crime drama called The Art of Crime where they solve high profile art crimes in the heart of Paris. Crime drama, art, and Paris. Talk about dreamy! In season two, an episode involved the paintings of Gustav Courbet. Not easy to watch while I worked, as it was subtitled, but I quickly got hooked and started watching it while riding the Peloton. I am a true multi-tasker!

Gustavo Courbet, Roe Deer in the Snow, 1868
Oil on canvas
Arthur Garfield Dove, Tree Forms, 1932
Oil on canvas
Albert Gleizes, Composition, 1921
Oil on panel
Anibal Villacis, Untitled, c. 1965
Oil and metal leaf on wood panel

My brother is a huge Sean Scully fan. As soon as I saw it, I texted him a picture of the the large, wall-sized, Scully painting below. He of course immediately replied “my favorite!” I liked it too.

Sean Scully, Red Durango, 1991
Oil on linen
Glenn Ligon, Untitled, 1992
Unknown artist, Yoruba cultures, Nigeria, Beaded Royal Cap, late nineteenth century
Glass beads, textiles, and thread

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