August 18, 2021
BMA Announces New Fall Exhibitions, Including a Major Reinstallation of Its Contemporary Wing
Also featured are exhibitions on sculptor Thaddeus Mosley and gifts from the collection of Suzanne F. Cohen
BALTIMORE, MD (August 18, 2021)—The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) announced today a new slate of fall exhibitions opening in October and November 2021. Thaddeus Mosley: Forest, opening October 17, is a focus exhibition of monumental abstract wood sculptures by the Pittsburgh-based artist; On Certainty: Gifts from the Collection of Suzanne F. Cohen, opening November 14, celebrates the late BMA Trustee’s commitment to art and access through the presentation of some of the most significant works she donated to the museum; and How Do We Know the World?, also opening November 14, is a major conceptual reinstallation of the BMA’s contemporary wing that features nearly 100 works in a variety of media presented over the course of two years. Many recent acquisitions and works by artists who are women and individuals of color are included.
The BMA’s fall 2021 season also includes the separately announced exhibitions Color and Illusion: The Still Lifes of Juan Gris, opening on September 12; A Modern Influence: Henri Matisse, Etta Cone, and Baltimore, opening on October 3; All Due Respect, opening on November 14; and Richard Yarde: Beyond the Savoy, opening on November 21.
“Our fall exhibition roster features an incredible range of artistic vision and innovation, from paintings and sculpture by modern masters to the boundary-pushing work of contemporary practitioners. In particular, the reinstallation of our contemporary wing captures the integration of art and life, and the ways in which artists illuminate and expand our thinking on the structures that shape our personal and communal experiences,” said Christopher Bedford, the BMA’s Dorothy Wagner Wallis Director. “We are also taking time this fall to celebrate two visionary women who have been essential to the evolution and growth of our collections: Etta Cone and Suzanne Cohen. Their passion and vision have served as important points of inspiration as we continue to develop our collecting priorities and approaches. We are very much looking forward to inviting our many audiences to engage with these presentations and the accompanying programs.”
More information about the exhibitions announced today follows.
Thaddeus Mosley: Forest
October 17, 2021–March 27, 2022
Thaddeus Mosley transforms wood into inventive abstract forms inspired by the visual culture of the African diaspora, jazz, and the 20th century modernist avant-garde. Using masterful woodworking techniques such as carving, chiseling, and joinery, Mosley reworks felled timber from the Pittsburgh area into monumental biomorphic expressions. The artist was nicknamed “the forest” by abstract painter Sam Gilliam, who noted he is the “keeper of old trees, round trees, big trees, heavy trees.” The BMA’s exhibition will feature five recent large-scale walnut sculptures centered in the John Waters Rotunda, offering visitors a unique opportunity to circumnavigate Mosley’s dazzling abstractions and highlighting the artist’s singular technique.
Thaddeus Mosley (b. 1926, New Castle, PA) is a Pittsburgh-based artist whose monumental sculptures are crafted with the felled trees of Pittsburgh’s urban canopy. Mosley’s work has been exhibited and acquired by major museums and foundations since 1959, including the Art Institute of Chicago, High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Brooklyn Museum in New York, Mattress Factory Museum in Pittsburgh, and the 57th Carnegie International (2018) at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh.
Thaddeus Mosley: Forest is curated by Jessica Bell Brown, BMA Associate Curator of Contemporary Art. The exhibition is generously supported by the Art Fund established with exchange funds from gifts of Dr. and Mrs. Edgar F. Berman, Equitable Bank, N.A., Geoffrey Gates, Sandra O. Moose, National Endowment for the Arts, Lawrence Rubin, Philip M. Stern, and Alan J. Zakon.
How Do We Know the World?
November 14, 2021 – September 2023
This two-year reinstallation of the museum’s contemporary art collection examines the ways artists have produced new forms of knowledge about the world. Nearly 100 works made primarily by Black and female artists—and many new to the collection—will reframe the museum’s holdings and follow artists in their expansive thinking and prismatic explorations of social, historical, and environmental perspectives. Among the themes explored in the exhibition are care, progress, wayfinding, witnessing, reckoning, and legacy. Grouped within and across these interrelated subjects are dynamic works across media by Robert Colescott, Paul Chan, Jadé Fadojutimi, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Rashid Johnson, Gisela McDaniel, Meleko Mokgosi, Martine Syms, Kara Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, Kay WalkingStick, Wilmer Wilson IV, and many others. The BMA is committed to telling stories that reflect the true spectrum and diversity of voices and experiences in our world. The reinstallation of the contemporary wing speaks to the museum’s commitment to sharing narratives that expand the art historical canon. As this story is continually evolving, nearly half of the works will change every six months during the two-year presentation.
“On the heels of 2020 Vision, this reappraisal and reinstallation embraces the porosities of social and cultural histories from which these collection works emerge. We’re listening to the featured artists’ stories and forging new connections. This installation is also an invitation to you. Challenge us. Question us. There is no official accounting of life,” said Jessica Bell Brown and Leila Grothe, co-curators of How Do We Know the World?.
This exhibition is curated by Jessica Bell Brown, BMA Associate Curator of Contemporary Art, and Leila Grothe, BMA Associate Curator of Contemporary Art.
This exhibition is supported by Transamerica, the Suzanne F. Cohen Exhibition Fund, and The Dorman/Mazaroff Contemporary Endowment Fund.
On Certainty: Gifts from the Collection of Suzanne F. Cohen
November 14, 2021 – September 18, 2022
This exhibition showcases some of the most significant works donated to the BMA by Suzanne F. Cohen (1935-2018), as well as acquisitions her support made possible. Cohen’s extraordinary leadership and enduring support for the BMA touched every area of the museum. In addition to chairing the board and numerous trustee committees, Cohen provided funding for free admission, exhibitions, commissions, restorations, public programs, and gifts of art. Highlights of the exhibition include a major multi-panel painting by Ellsworth Kelly; works in various media including a newly imagined wall painting by conceptualist artist Mel Bochner, with whom Cohen had a decades-long friendship; and important works on paper by Sol LeWitt, Sherrie Levine, Adam Pendleton, Marjetica Potrč, Robert Smithson, and others. This presentation includes works on paper that will be changed in April 2022.
This exhibition is curated by Cecilia Wichmann, BMA Associate Curator of Contemporary Art.
This exhibition is supported by the Suzanne F. Cohen Exhibition Fund.
About the Baltimore Museum of Art
Founded in 1914, the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) inspires people of all ages and backgrounds through exhibitions, programs, and collections that tell an expansive story of art—challenging long-held narratives and embracing new voices. Our outstanding collection of more than 97,000 objects spans many eras and cultures and includes the world’s largest public holding of works by Henri Matisse; one of the nation’s finest collections of prints, drawings, and photographs; and a rapidly growing number of works by contemporary artists of diverse backgrounds. The museum is also distinguished by a neoclassical building designed by American architect John Russell Pope and two beautifully landscaped gardens featuring an array of modern and contemporary sculpture. The BMA is located three miles north of the Inner Harbor, adjacent to the main campus of Johns Hopkins University, and has a community branch at Lexington Market. General admission is free so that everyone can enjoy the power of art.