The artistic voice of fiber artist Judith Scott

The self-taught artists whose works were selected for the exhibition Self-Taught Genius: Treasures from the American Folk Art Museum often had unique circumstances, which unlocked their genius and set them on a path to self-actualization and amazing creativity. One such remarkable artist is Judith Scott, recognized as one of America’s more celebrated visual artists even… Read More »

A Tale of Two Kitties

It was the best of times (exciting new acquisition), it was the worst of times (the Depression). Both wisdom and folly were in ample supply when the Museum purchased Cat, an exquisite Egyptian artifact created during the 26th Dynasty of Egypt (664–525 BC). Sculpted in bronze and originally intended to contain a cat mummy, this… Read More »

Life Through a Lens – Dorothea Lange’s Migrant Mother, Nipomo, CA

Life. That’s what Dorothea Lange (1895-1965) set out to depict when she captured the iconic image of mother and migrant farm laborer Florence Owens Thompson in 1936. On assignment for the Farm Security Administration to document the impact of federal programs in rural areas, Lange arrived at a California migrant-workers settlement and encountered Thompson, who… Read More »

Explore The Carpet Design Studio

The tools and materials used by weavers who create Oriental carpets, like those on view in the Carpet and the Connoisseur, are yours to experience. Visit the Carpet Design Studio in the exhibition, perfect for visitors of all ages, and admission is free on Fridays! slam.org/ballard

Fresh from critics’ praise, Water Lilies returns

Water Lilies has returned to Gallery 218 after a nine-month hiatus that took the painting to Cleveland and London for the exhibition Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse. The Museum’s Water Lilies is the central panel of the 42-foot Agapanthus triptych, which Monet started to paint around 1915 and continued to rework and obsessively… Read More »

Get to Know the Carpet Connoisseur

By the early 20th century St. Louisian James Franklin Ballard (1851-1931) had achieved great success in the industry of non-prescription medicines. His products included Campho-Phenique, a topical antiseptic still available today. The fortune generated by his medications allowed Ballard, a self-trained scholar, to amass an exceptional collection of Oriental carpets and two Persian pleasure tents.… Read More »

The Carpet and the Connoisseur

Originating in the eastern regions of the world, Oriental carpets have served indigenous populations and attracted foreign admirers for centuries. The fifty-one carpets and two Persian pleasure tents on view in The Carpet and the Connoisseur: The James F. Ballard Collection of Oriental Rugs feature lush wool, silk, and cotton yarns, dyed in striking hues,… Read More »

Take a closer look at Currents 112: Andréa Stanislav: Convergence Infinité

Across the Mississippi River from St. Louis’s Gateway Arch, a symbol of westward expansion, one can find vestiges of the largest pre-historic settlement north of Mexico. The Cahokia Mounds in Collinsville, Illinois were built by a civilization which flourished for centuries before its mysterious decline. Both of these sites represent the apex or pinnacle—in a… Read More »