Monthly Archives: May 2016

Press release: Self-Taught Genius charts the history of American folk art through more than 100 masterworks

ST. LOUIS, May 24, 2016—The Saint Louis Art Museum will present Self-Taught Genius: Treasures from the American Folk Art Museum, an exhibition charting the development of folk art in America while pondering the motivations for artists who were at times considered to work outside of canonical art history. The ticketed exhibition will be on view… Read More »

Self-Taught Genius spotlight: Original Design Quilt

Some of the more dazzling silk quilts made at the turn of the twentieth century are the work of men in the tailoring trades, often emigrants from Germany or Eastern Europe. Strip constructions, such as the Log Cabin pattern, enabled the quiltmakers to utilize bits of silk that were left over from vests and other… Read More »

Self-Taught Genius spotlight: Knife Grinder

The United States was always a country of tinkerers. Behind the love of mechanical ingenuity, though, lay a desire to produce advances that were both practical and timesaving. By the late nineteenth century mechanical innovations induced a growing sense of nostalgia for a way of life that was quickly vanishing in a changing and industrializing… Read More »

Self-Taught Genius spotlight: Subway Riders

Ralph Fasanella has spoken eloquently about Subway Riders, painted from sketches he had made from life: “I’d ride the subway every day, back and forth to my machine shop job. I’d ride and ride and sketch and sketch. I love the subway. It pulls the city together, pulls people together in a magic way. Here… Read More »

Self-Taught Genius spotlight: Reina

Divinities, celestial themes, rising figures, and flying vessels are typical cosmic subjects from the iconographic directory of self-taught artists. Included in this category are pedestaled and idealized women, singularly or all at once goddess, star, femme fatale, Madonna, and empress. Reina (queen) by Martín Ramírez does not depict a popular Mexican figure like the Virgin… Read More »

Self-Taught Genius spotlight: Scenic Overmantel

Once the American landscape was visibly improved—by altering an original state of nature into one that was useful to man—it became a subject of interest to landowners and artists. Winthrop Chandler was one of the first American artists to visually engage with the landscape in a number of overmantels and portraits that he painted for… Read More »

Encyclopedic Palace

Born in 1891 in Guardiagrele, Italy, Marino Auriti came to the United States sometime between 1923 and the 1930s. He worked as an auto-body mechanic, but architecture was his passion. Over the course of three years, he executed a model, built on a scale of 1:200, for an ambitious construction called the Palazzo Enciclopedico (Encyclopedic… Read More »

Press release: Museum announces appointment of Gretchen Wagner

ST. LOUIS, May 10, 2016—Gretchen Wagner has been appointed Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in Prints, Drawings, and Photographs, the Saint Louis Art Museum announced today. The history of printmaking and the role of artist’s editions in contemporary practice is a primary focus of Wagner’s research. She has, for example, explored the worlds of 1970s conceptual… Read More »

Press release: Museum appoints Amber Withycombe director of institutional giving

ST. LOUIS, May 3, 2016—Amber Withycombe has been appointed director of institutional giving at the Saint Louis Art Museum, where she will oversee funding relationships with corporations and foundations and serve as the institution’s chief representative to the St. Louis corporate-funding community. Withycombe recently was director of development for LaunchCode, the St. Louis-based national nonprofit… Read More »