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Northwestern Visual Arts in June

Block Museum, Dittmar Gallery, One Book and University Library offer free events

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May 24, 2013 | by Judy Moore

EVANSTON, Ill. --- “A City So Real,” a free stage adaptation based on Alex Kotlowitz’s book “Never a City So Real” -- this year’s One Book One Northwestern selection -- will be staged throughout the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art’s galleries June 8 and 9. Reserve free tickets through the One Book One Northwestern website.

Two ongoing exhibitions -- “Drawing the Future: Chicago Architecture on the International Stage, 1900-1925” and “Blacklisted: William Gropper’s Capriccios” -- are open for public viewing through Aug. 11, on the University’s Evanston campus.

“Drawing the Future,” in the Block’s Main Gallery, highlights the role Chicago architects played in the development of urban planning in the United States, Europe and Australia during the early 20th century.

“Blacklisted,” in the Ellen Philips Katz and Howard C. Katz Gallery, showcases Gropper’s personal and artistic response to his experience as a blacklisted artist in 1950s America. Gropper’s “Capriccios” portfolio is displayed in its entirety for the first time in nearly 60 years.

The Block also is hosting “CLOWNFLANEUR: MFA Thesis Exhibition from the Department of Art Theory and Practice,” through June 23 in the Alsdorf Gallery, featuring the works of four graduating Northwestern University Master of Fine Arts students.

Block’s ongoing exhibition, “Theo Leffmann: Weaving a Life into Art,” in the Theo Leffmann Gallery, also runs through Aug. 11. For more information, visit the Block website or call (847) 491-4000.

Northwestern’s Dittmar Memorial Gallery hosts the Senior Art Show, “Glossolalia,through June 13, an exhibition of the works of soon-to-graduate Northwestern University senior art majors in the department of art theory and practice. Dittmar’s “From Generation to Generation,” June 18 through June 24, will showcase photographs from the early 1970s by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker and Northwestern alumnus John Block, and contemporary photos of campus life by his daughter Vanessa Gonzalez-Block, who graduates from Northwestern in June. From June 28 through Aug. 11, Dittmar will host “Moving Spectacles,” a selection of photographs by Chicago artist and educator Liese Ricketts taken when she visited small nomadic family circuses in Peru. 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 the Dittmar Memorial Gallery website.

Northwestern University Library hosts an exhibition that celebrates the life and accomplishments of Viola Spolin. An innovator of 20th century American theater, Spolin helped spark the improvisational theater movement. “Viola Spolin: Improvisation & Intuition” runs through Aug. 16. For more, visit Northwestern University Libary's website or call (847) 491-7658.

Details related to these events follow:

MARY AND LEIGH BLOCK MUSEUM OF ART

Northwestern University’s Mary and Leigh Block Museum is located at 40 Arts Circle Drive, on the 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. (Editor’s Note: From June 25 through Aug. 11 the Block Museum’s summer hours will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The Block will be closed from Aug. 12 through Sept. 19.) For more information, visit the Block website 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 the Block website.

BLOCK MUSEUM SPRING 2013 EXHIBITIONS

“Drawing the Future: Chicago Architecture on the International Stage, 1900-1925,” through Aug. 11, Block Museum, Main Gallery. Curated by Northwestern’s David Van Zanten, Mary Jane Crowe Professor in Art and 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 among architects Walter Burley Griffin, Marion Mahony Griffin, Frank Lloyd Wright, Tony Garnier, Rudolf Schindler and others. Support for this exhibition is provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art on behalf of William Osborn and David Kabiller; John K. Notz Jr.; Myers Foundations; Alumnae of Northwestern University; Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation; The Graduate School, Northwestern University; Illinois Arts Council, a state agency; Norton S. Walbridge Fund; Carlyle Anderson Endowment; Kessel Fund at the Block Museum; and Walter Burley Griffin Society of America. Guided tours of the exhibition continue through June 23. For more information, visit the Block website.

“Blacklisted: William Gropper’s Capriccios,” through Aug. 11, Block Museum, Ellen Philips Katz and Howard C. Katz Gallery. This exhibition showcases artist William Gropper’s personal and visual response to his experience as a blacklisted artist in 1950s America. A portfolio of 50 lithographs, created after his encounters with the House Committee on Un-American Activities, was inspired by Goya’s late 18th century series of etchings “Los Caprichos.” Gropper’s “Capriccios” will be displayed in their entirety for the first time in nearly 60 years. “Blacklisted” is curated by John Murphy, Block Museum Graduate Fellow 2012-13.  Support is provided by the Ellen Philips Katz and Howard C. Katz Endowment, Norton S. Walbridge Fund, Louise E. Drangsholt Fund and Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. The Block Museum is grateful to Evelyn Salk for her gift of the Gropper portfolio in memory of her husband, Erwin A. Salk.

“CLOWNFLANEUR: MFA Thesis Exhibition from the Department of Art theory and Practice,” through June 23, Block Museum, Alsdorf Gallery. The exhibition features the works of graduating Northwestern University Master of Fine Arts students Amanda Elise Bowles, Daniel Giles, Esau McGhee and Matt Morris.

BLOCK MUSEUM ONGOING EXHIBITION

“Theo Leffmann: Weaving a Life into Art,” through Aug. 11, 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. Leffmann’s 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. They are generous gifts from her husband Paul Leffmann.

ONE BOOK ONE NORTHWESTERN EVENT AT THE BLOCK MUSEUM

ONE BOOK ONE NORTHWESTERN, “A City So Real” stage adaptation, 7 p.m. Saturday, June 8, and 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday, June 9, Northwestern University’s Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, 40 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston campus. “A City So Real” is a performance directed by D. Soyini Madison, chair of Northwestern’s department of performance studies, portraying the divergent stories of Chicago neighborhoods and the people who inspired them. It will be staged throughout the Block Museum’s galleries. Space is limited. Reservations are required. Reserve free tickets through the One Book One Northwestern website.

BLOCK EXHIBITION TOURS

Free guided weekend tours of the Block Museum’s spring exhibitions, 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, through June 23. Tours for classes and groups of eight or more are also available with advance notice. To arrange a group tour, email blockeducation@northwestern.edu, or for information, visit the Block website.                                                                                

DITTMAR MEMORIAL GALLERY 

The Dittmar Memorial Gallery, Norris University Center, 1999 Campus Drive, Evanston campus, is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. (Editor’s note: From June 24 to Aug. 16, the gallery will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday.) Admission is free. The gallery focuses on ethnic cultural art, art by emerging artists, art by or about women, artwork by Northwestern art students and traveling art shows. For more information, visit the Dittmar Memorial Gallery website.

DITTMAR GALLERY SPRING 2013 EXHIBITION

• Senior Art Show, “Glossolalia,” through June 13, Dittmar Memorial Gallery. This group exhibition showcases the works of Northwestern University’s soon-to-graduate 2013 senior class of art theory and practice majors. Featuring artwork by Madeline Amos, Kyle Frost, Audrey Haque, Jason Pan, Andrew Paulson, Harrison Shih, Laura Shultz, Judy Suh, Alaya Turnbough, Wendy You and Crystal Zhang, the show explores different ways of constructing meaning in contemporary art. Additional programming will be announced at a later date.

• “From Generation to Generation” June 18 through June 24, Dittmar Memorial Gallery. This photography exhibition will feature the works of Emmy Award-winning filmmaker John Block and his daughter Vanessa Gonzalez-Block. John Block, a 1973 graduate of Northwestern, is one of the Dittmar Gallery’s first exhibiting artists. Vanessa, a senior anthropology major and film and media studies minor, will graduate from Northwestern in June. Exhibited together during commencement week, their photos will provide a “then and now” perspective of 40 years of Northwestern student life.

• “Moving Spectacles” by Liese Ricketts, June 28 through Aug. 11, Dittmar Memorial Gallery. The exhibition features a selection of photographs that Chicago artist and educator Liese Ricketts took in 2010 when she visited small nomadic family circuses on the extreme outskirts of Lima, Peru. The exhibition and an opening reception from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 30, on the South Lawn adjacent to Norris Center and in the Dittmar Gallery, are free and open to the public. 

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, through Aug. 16. Members of the Northwestern community with a valid WildCARD can visit during all open library hours. Admission is free. For more information, visit the Northwestern University Library website or call (847) 491-7658.

UNIVERSITY LIBRARY SPRING 2013 EXHIBITION AND RELATED EVENT

“Viola Spolin: Improvisation & Intuition” exhibit, through Aug. 16, University Library, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. This exhibition celebrates Spolin’s contribution to the world of theater. Known as the “High Priestess of Improv,” Viola Spolin (1906-1994) influenced a generation of performers who, in turn, shaped today’s entertainment landscape. 

The exhibit -- curated by Dan Zellner, Charlotte Cubbage and Benn Joseph -- draws on the writings, games, production photos, scripts and other materials that are part of the Spolin Collection at the McCormick Library of Special Collections. The exhibit is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Clare Roccaforte at c-roccaforte@northwestern.edu or (847) 467-5918.

Topics: Campus Life