Feb. 14, 2007 -- The University of Virginia Art Museum will feature four exhibits at the Final Friday reception on Feb. 23 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The event is preceded by a gallery talk at 5 p.m. by Matthew Affron, an expert on Fernand Leger and exhibition curator of "Fernand Leger: Contrasts of Forms," one of the featured exhibits.
"Fernand Leger: Contrasts of Forms," curated by Affron, director of special curatorial projects and associate professor in the McIntire Department of Art, features two paintings and 11 drawings - examples from a remarkable sequence of images made by Leger between 1912 and 1914. Two great stories of modernist art are recognized in this exhibition: the rise of cubism and the beginning of abstract art. And yet, said Affron, these works remain a puzzle.
Comprised of major works from public and private collections, this exhibition provides a rare opportunity to study closely Leger's extraordinary manner of imaging. In 1915 the painter described this open-ended series of compositions as "fairly abstract investigations (contrasts of forms and colors)," choosing his words in order to highlight the experimental thrust of the series as a whole.
The second special exhibition, "Uninterrupted Flux: Hedda Sterne, A Retrospective" brings together almost 100 works from museums across the country and Sterne's own collection, and highlights notable periods in her artistic career. Prominence is given to Sterne's Machine and Spray Roads paintings, portraits, installations and recent drawings. Sterne exhibited with the Surrealists in Paris in the late 1930s and attained national prominence in the 1940s and 1950s, exhibiting with the Abstract Expressionists in the United States.
The third exhibit, "Intensity of Observation and Infinite Significance: Indian Painting at the University of Virginia Art Museum," showcases some of the museum's significant repository of South Asian paintings, including highlights from the collection and private loans, featuring about 30 significant works from the 15th to the 19th centuries, chosen for their quality and range, historical importance and thematic interest. The exhibit was curated by Daniel Ehnbom, adjunct curator of South Asian art and associate professor in the McIntire Department of Art.
The final exhibit, "Images of Women in African Traditional Art," features faces and figures of women that are universal in the traditional arts of sub-Saharan Africa. Whether they represent spiritual beings or human ancestors, images of women are found everywhere both on ritual objects and items of everyday use. The exhibit was curated by Ben Ray, professor of religious studies at the University of Virginia, and offers a wide-ranging look at the variety of sub-Saharan artistic expressions of the feminine in both naturalistic and strikingly abstract forms.
Final Friday receptions are free to students and museum members. Students must bring a driver's license or passport identification to verify they are 21 or older. For all others, there is a $3 admission charge.
Parking is reserved in the A6 parking lot at the end of Madison Bowl, across from the museum.
For information about the museum, call (434) 924-3592 or visit its Web site at www.virginia.edu/artmuseum.