The Weatherspoon Art Museum
at UNC Greensboro
announces the opening of three new exhibitions curated from its collection. Markmaking: Selections from the Collection
(January 2 - April 3, 2021), Slow Looking/Deep Seeing
(January 16 - June 19, 2021), and Vibrant: Artists Engage with Color
(February 27 - August 14, 2021).
Studies show that the average time museum visitors spend in front of a work of art is 8 seconds, similar to the human attention span for any one thing in general. What happens however when we take time to look? Curator of education Ann Grimaldi
says, “It’s fascinating to notice what thoughts and feelings arise from focused observation. It’s not something we typically practice and so it can feel pretty uncomfortable. What’s interesting is the way our understanding can change when we look objectively and with purpose.”
This winter, visitors to the Weatherspoon can practice slow looking—no art degree or lengthy label reading required! Three exhibitions were pulled from the museum’s collection with this thought in mind. It might be a vibrant color or splashy brushstroke that grabs your attention, but the next step, says Grimaldi, is to ask yourself, “What are you seeing that makes you think (or feel) that?” Asking these questions along with talking with a friend or taking notes will naturally help you slow down and see more in your life.
The Weatherspoon’s collection is considered to be one of the foremost of its kind in the Southeast. It represents most major art movements from the beginning of the 20th century to the present.Markmaking: Selections from the Collection
January 2 - April 3, 2021
The artworks in this exhibition show a plethora of approaches to markmaking, a term used to describe the different types of lines, scratches, smudges, patterns, dots, and textures that result from the way an artist applies a material, such as graphite or paint, to a surface. Because each mark possesses unique characteristics as well as contributes to the entire composition, it is an effective way to communicate. Marks can be descriptive, intuitive, or expressive. For example, some marks suggest vigorous energy or movement owing to the way they were applied, while others denote close attention to detail. Still, others feature novel techniques such as cutting and burning. On display are works by, among many others: Natalie Alper, Keith Carter, Sol LeWitt, Vik Muniz, Alyson Shotz, and Robert Smithson. In all, these objects show how distinct strokes and application methods make each—and its artist—unique.
Top, right image: Alyson Shotz, Untitled (two checks)
, about 1996 (detail). Sumi ink on canceled checks, 13 3/4 x 14 1/2 in. Weatherspoon Art Museum. Gift of Lesley Spector Birenbaum, 2002.13.3. © Alyson ShotzSlow Looking/Deep Seeing
January 16 - June 19, 2021
Research has shown that visitors to art venues spend only a few seconds looking at each work on display. The Weatherspoon’s curatorial and education staff has organized an exhibition drawn from the museum’s collection that will offer visitors a chance to slow down, make discoveries, and effectively connect with works of art.Slow Looking/Deep Seeing
features a variety of works, both modern and contemporary, and is divided into three sections to facilitate immersive viewing: Reading the Narrative/Image, Noticing as Contemplative Practice, and Interpreting Movement. Figurative paintings with complex narratives will prompt viewers to take some time to decipher their meaning, while both representational and abstract artworks will allow for in-depth examination and peaceful contemplation. Slow Looking/Deep Seeing
will be used by UNCG courses this spring as part of the museum’s Art of Seeing program. Now in its eleventh year, the program is designed to help students in health and human science fields hone their visual, diagnostic, interpretative, and communication skills.Vibrant: Artists Engage with Color
February 27 - August 14, 202
Our associations with colors are profound and diverse. Someone “seeing red” is angry, someone “feeling blue” is sad. A “green” product is environmentally friendly, while a jealous person is “green with envy.” We associate yellow with springtime—sunshine, daffodils, and baby chicks—yet also know it as an indication of low-level threats in color-coded alert systems. We make use of colors as forms of expression. Likewise for artists, color is a dynamic tool—one that can capture moods and suggest meanings. This exhibition presents works from the Weatherspoon’s collection in which artists have chosen to feature singular colors to dramatic effect. Individually, they engage a breadth of content; collectively, they offer a vibrant installation that allows us to explore the color spectrum and appreciate its impact.
Image: Betye Saar, To the Manor Born
, 2011 (detail). Mixed media assemblage, 11 1/2 x 20 1/2 x 2 1/4 in. Weatherspoon Art Museum. Purchased with funds from the Jefferson-Pilot Endowment, the Robert C. Ketner Family Acquisition Endowment, the Carol and Seymour Levin Acquisition Endowment, the Lynn Richardson Prickett Acquisition Endowment, and the Judy Proctor Acquisition Endowment, 2016.18. © Betye Saar, photo courtesy of the artist and Roberts Projects, Los Angeles