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Northwestern Visual Arts in March

Block Museum, Dittmar Gallery and University Library offer winter exhibitions

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February 22, 2013 | by Judy Moore
Dittmar Memorial Gallery hosts “Animal /Artifact,” which opens Feb. 21 and runs through March 22. 

EVANSTON, Ill. --- A multimedia performance by artist and musician Terry Adkins and the Lone Wolf Recital Corps, March 1, at Regenstein Hall of Music, is one of many special events the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art has scheduled this winter.

This spring, the Block Museum will present “Drawing the Future: Chicago Architecture on the International Stage, 1900-1925,” April 19 to Aug. 11, an exhibition highlighting the role Chicago-based architects played in the development of urban planning in the United States, Europe and Australia during the early 20th century.

Art lovers are also invited to the Block Museum’s three winter exhibitions, which run through March 24. “Terry Adkins Recital,” an exhibit of selected works from the artist and musician’s three-decade career, is on view in the main gallery. “Eye Contact: Photographic Portraits from the Collection,” in the Ellen Philips Katz and Howard C. Katz Gallery
, features Block collection works by Andy Warhol, W. Eugene Smith, Robert Mapplethorpe and others, and poses questions about the gaze in photographic portraiture. “Shimon Attie: The Neighbor Next Door,” an installation by internationally renowned American artist Attie, is in the Alsdorf Gallery. Block’s ongoing exhibition, “Theo Leffmann: Weaving a Life into Art,” in the Theo Leffmann Gallery, also runs through March 24 and will re-open in Spring 2013. For more information, visit the Block website at www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu or call (847) 491-4000.

Northwestern’s Dittmar Memorial Gallery hosts “Animal /Artifact,” which opens Feb. 21 and runs through March 22, featuring work by artists Maria Lux and David Harper. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Dittmar Gallery at (847) 491-2348 or Norris University Center at (847) 491-2300, email dittmargallery@northwestern.edu or visit www.dittmar.northwestern.edu.

One Book One Northwestern and Northwestern’s Women’s Center will co-host a March 6 lecture by author Louise Knight on pioneering Chicago settlement worker Jane Addams, founder of Hull House, at the Evanston campus Women’s Center. A March 7 One Book One Northwestern dinner book discussion at the Dittmar Memorial Gallery will focus on two chapters of Alex Kotlowitz’s book “Never a City so Real.” Both events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit www. northwestern.edu/onebook.

Northwestern University Library, 1970 Campus Drive, Evanston campus, hosts two exhibitions this winter. “Decorative Cloth: Publishers’ Trade Bindings, 1820-1920” continues through March 25, and “On Her Own Terms: Patricia Neal’s Life and Legacy” runs through March 22. Both are free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.library.northwestern.edu or call (847) 491-7658.

MARY AND LEIGH BLOCK MUSEUM OF ART

Northwestern University’s Mary and Leigh Block Museum is located at 40 Arts Circle Drive, on the University’s Evanston campus

Admission to the Block Museum galleries and programs listed below is free. The galleries are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The museum is closed on Monday. For more information, visit http://www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu or call (847) 491-4000.

CONSTRUCTION ALERT

A long-term construction project on Northwestern’s south campus has limited access to the Block Museum and Arts Circle Drive. Free parking is available in the lot directly south of the museum. For directions and parking information, visit www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu/visit/directions-and-parking/index.html.

BLOCK MUSEUM SPRING 2013 EXHIBITION PREVIEW 

“Drawing the Future: Chicago Architecture on the International Stage, 1900-1925,” April 19 to Aug. 11, Block Museum, Main Gallery. In the early 20th century Chicago-based architects engaged in dynamic conversations with their progressive European counterparts as urban planning evolved in practice and on paper. Curated by Northwestern’s David Van Zanten, Mary Jane Crowe Professor in the department of art history, this exhibition explores the dialogue between architects and city planners in the United States, Europe and Australia through drawings, large-scale architectural renderings, sketches and rare books. An accompanying full-color publication provides original research exploring the international exchanges between architects, including Walter Burley Griffin, Marion Mahony Griffin, Frank Lloyd Wright, Tony Garnier and Rudolf Schindler. A catalogue will be available.

BLOCK MUSEUM WINTER 2013 EXHIBITIONS

“Terry Adkins Recital,” through March 24, Block Museum, Main Gallery. “Recital” brings together 30 years of work by artist and musician Terry Adkins. Combining sculpture and live performance, Adkins has described his art making approach as similar to that of a composer. His sculptures re-purpose and combine materials, including fiberglass propellers, wooden coat hangers, parachute fabric and musical instruments, in a process he calls “potential disclosure.” In performances with members of his Lone Wolf Recital Corps, Adkins activates these objects through improvisational playing and singing, spoken word, costumes and recorded sound. The events are intended to uphold the legacies of immortal and enigmatic figures, including Bessie Smith, John Brown, Sam Lightin’ Hopkins and John Coltrane. Adkins sheds light on willfully neglected or ignored aspects in the life of well-known figures, including Jimi Hendrix and his military service as a U.S. Army paratrooper in the highly decorated 101st Airborne Division. Adkins is a professor of fine arts at the University of Pennsylvania. “Terry Adkins Recital” is curated by Ian Berry, Dayton Director of The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College, in collaboration with the artist. To view a video of Adkins and his work, visit www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu/view/exhibitions/2013/terry-adkins-recital.html.

“Eye Contact: Photographic Portraits from the Collection,” 
through March 24, Block Museum, Ellen Philips Katz and Howard C. Katz Gallery
. Block Museum’s collection of works by Andy Warhol, W. Eugene Smith, Robert Mapplethorpe and others pose questions about the importance of the gaze in photographic portraiture. “Eye Contact” is curated by Northwestern University Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences undergraduate Sophie Jenkins.

“Shimon Attie: The Neighbor Next Door,” through March 24, 2013, Block Museum, Alsdorf Gallery. For two decades, Attie has created immersive multimedia art -- from photographs and video installations in museums and galleries to site-specific works in public places -- that reflects on place, memory and identity. In this exhibition, the artist has re-envisioned a work featuring archival film footage taken clandestinely by people forced into seclusion by the Nazis. In 1995, Attie projected the films onto the sidewalks of Amsterdam from apartments where many individuals actually hid during World War II. Visitors to the Block Museum will view the films in a gallery installation that evokes the experience of watching them from a confined space. The exhibition is co-curated by David Tolchinsky and Debra Tolchinsky, faculty members of the department of radio/television/film.

BLOCK MUSEUM ONGOING EXHIBITION

“Theo Leffmann: Weaving a Life into Art,” through March 24, Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Theo Leffman Gallery, 40 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. The fiber art of Chicago artist Theo Leffmann (1911-96) evokes the ancient and the exotic, echoing pre-Columbian and non-Western processes and forms with a distinct personal vision. Her 40-year career coincided with a revolution in textile art as the division between “high art” and “craft” diminished. Her colorful, richly textured and playful weavings, wall hangings and sculptural objects are drawn from the Block Museum’s permanent collection. The works are generous gifts from her husband Paul Leffmann. 

BLOCK MUSEUM MARCH 2013 EVENTS

Facets, 7 p.m. Friday, March 1, NOTE: VENUE CHANGE, Ryan Auditorium, Technological Institute, 2145 Sheridan Road, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. In this multimedia performance, artist and musician Terry Adkins combines sculpture, music, video, spoken word, costumes and sound. Adkins will perform with the Lone Wolf Recital Corps (featuring Clifford Owens, Kamau Patton, Tameka Norris and Blanche Bruce) and members of the Northwestern and Evanston communities. Admission is free. Reservations are strongly encouraged. Email your name, phone number and number of seats requested to blockeducation@northwestern.edu. A free after-party at the Block Museum will immediately follow the recital and will include free food and entertainment by local musicians from Northwestern and beyond.

BLOCK MUSEUM EXHIBITION TOURS

Block Museum docents lead guided tours of the winter exhibitions at 1 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, Jan. 26 to March 24. Tours for classes and groups of eight or more are available with advance notice. Call (847) 491-4852, email blockeducation@northwestern.edu, or visit http://www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu/visit/gallery-tours.html for more information.

DITTMAR MEMORIAL GALLERY

The Dittmar Memorial Gallery, Norris University Center, 1999 Campus Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus, is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Admission is free. The gallery focuses on ethnic cultural art, art by emerging artists, art by or about women, artwork by Northwestern undergraduate and graduate art students, and traveling art shows. For more information, visit www.dittmar.northwestern.edu.

DITTMAR GALLERY WINTER 2013 EXHIBITION

“Animal/Artifact,” Feb. 21 through March 22, 2013, Dittmar Memorial Gallery, Norris University Center, 1999 Campus Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. Exploring the intersection of natural history and cultural history, “Animal/Artifact” examines the human need to control man’s environment and the creatures within it. The artists in this exhibition -- Maria Lux and David Harper -- investigate man’s urge to dominate animals. Their precarious installations allude to a tenuous relationship between man and mammal. The exhibition is free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.dittmar.northwestern.edu.

ONE BOOK ONE NORTHWESTERN MARCH 2013 EVENTS

Jane Addams and the Gritty Side of Chicago lecture, noon to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, Women’s Center, 2000 Sheridan Road, Northwestern University Evanston campus.

Louise Knight, author of “Jane Addams: Spirit in Action” will talk about the pioneering settlement worker and founder of Hull House. The program is presented in collaboration with Northwestern University’s Women’s Center in celebration of Women’s History Month. Bring a brown bag lunch. Pre-register at bit.ly/addamstalk. Admission is free and open to the public.

Big in Paris: Art, Democracy and the Second City dinner book discussion, 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 7, Dittmar Memorial Gallery, Norris University Center, 1999 Campus Drive, Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. Maud Hickey, associate professor of music education at Northwestern’s Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music, will moderate a One Book One Northwestern book discussion on Alex Kotlowitz’s “Never a City so Real.” Chapters titled “Give Them What They Want” and “It takes all Kinds” will be discussed. A light supper will be provided. Hosted by the Dittmar Gallery, the event is free and open to the public. Pre-registration for dinner book discussions is required at www.northwestern.edu/onebook/

UNIVERSITY LIBRARY

Exhibitions at Northwestern University Library at 1970 Campus Drive, Evanston campus, are open to the public daily from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, or as noted. Members of the Northwestern community with a valid WildCARD can visit during all open library hours. Admission is free. For more information, visit www.library.northwestern.edu or call (847) 491-7658. 

UNIVERSITY LIBRARY WINTER 2013 EXHIBITION

“Decorative Cloth: Publishers’ Trade Bindings, 1820,” through March 25, 2013, University Library, Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. In the early 19th century, the development of case binding, a technique conducive to mass production, made the manufacture of books with uniform binding possible. Publishers eventually began using this convenience to their further advantage, decorating the covers and spines as a form of commercial enticement and an expression of house pride. This trend continued into the early years of the 20th century. The Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections holds thousands of examples of publishers’ trade bindings. A selection is on display on the third floor of Deering Library. Arranged chronologically, the exhibition showcases some of the typical designs of the decades. It is open to the public during the Library’s regular public hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday. For more on the Deering Library, visit www.library.northwestern.edu/libraries-collections/evanston-campus/special-collections.

“On Her Own Terms: Patricia Neal’s Life and Legacy,” through March 22, 2013, Northwestern University Library, Evanston campus. Late Oscar-winning actress and Northwestern alumna Patricia Neal lit up the screen in films like “Hud,” “The Fountainhead” and “The Day the Earth Stood Still.” This exhibit -- drawn from her newly established archive at Northwestern University Library -- also explores the dramatic off-stage roles she undertook as wife and mother, glamorous celebrity and activist stroke survivor. Admission is free and open to the public during the library’s regular public hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday.