Conversations, an exhibition at Evergreen House exploring questions of influence and collaboration in contemporary art, opens with a preview reception from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 9, at Evergreen, 4545 N. Charles St. in Baltimore.
Curated by Barry Nemett, chair of the Painting Department at the Maryland Institute College of Art, Conversations features work in various media by more than 90 artists, including William Kentridge, Joyce Scott, Raoul Middelman, Jim Hennessey, Grace Hartigan, Donald Baechler and Gregory Gillespie. The preview reception is free to the public.
Conversations will question the widely-held belief that solitude and isolation are essential to creativity. As Nemett writes in the curator's statement for the exhibition catalogue, the inspiration for the show came from "a desire to see how and to what extent a number of artists for whom I have great respect would fare if they were to share the creative process with one another." Nemett grouped current and former faculty and students of the Maryland Institute College of Art with the visual artists, writers and poets who have influenced them and encouraged each team to create either a collaborative work or individual pieces that responded to one another. The result, Nemett writes, was 35 paintings, drawings, sculpture and mixed media objects that illustrate "what can happen when creative individuals purposely enter their studios together and do more than just look over each other's shoulders."
Presenting Conversations at Evergreen House celebrates the long-standing connection between MICA and John Work Garrett and Alice Warder Garrett, generous arts patrons who left their family estate to The Johns Hopkins University in 1942. The Garretts supported MICA through the endowment of a scholarship fund for its students and by bringing such famed artists as L‚on Bakst and Jacques Maroger to teach and lecture there.
In conjunction with the exhibition, Evergreen House will present a number of public programs, including a curator's talk by Barry Nemett at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 12, and an artist's conversation between Barry Nemett and Raoul Middleman at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 13. Both programs are free to the public and will take place in the Bakst Theatre at Evergreen House.
Conversations will continue at Evergreen House through Jan. 4, 2004, after which it will travel to four additional museums in the Mid-Atlantic region and New England. After the preview reception on Oct. 9, admission to the museum and exhibition is free to Evergreen House members, $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for students and children under 6. Ample free parking is available at the museum. For directions and information, call (410) 516-0341 or visit www.jhu.edu/historichouses.
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