Monday, February 29, 2016

Esther Anderson and Larry Gartel At the Miami Film Festival

Esther Anderson and Larry Gartel At the Miami Film Festival 

~What a great time last night at the opening of "A Warm December" starring Sidney Poitier and Esther Anderson. Esther was given a proclamation by the City of North Miami Beach, and honored by Elliot Jones (grandson of Maya Angelou.) The film itself created in 1972 was a defiant victory showcasing a successful black doctor being revered in a white man's world while meeting a Princess who had sickle cell anemia and bringing that disease to the consciousness of the public. - A tremendously heroic depiction by Sidney Poitier and a sensational confident, young woman in Esther Anderson. What an amazing human being she IS. Thank you for suggesting I go see the film and Esther. A highlight I have included in the GARTEL Life Book. ... Lawrence Gartel, Feb, 27, 2016 

Elliot Jones (grandson of Maya Angelou.)


Thursday, February 25, 2016



New York, February 25, 2016 - The International Fine Print Dealers Association (IFPDA) is pleased to announce the appointment of six new members comprising a broad international scope of galleries, dealers and printers including: Benveniste Contemporary (Madrid); Cade Tompkins Projects (Providence, R.I); Isselbacher Gallery (New York); Mike Karstens (Münster); Stamperia d'Arte Berardinelli (Verona); and Michael Woolworth (Paris). These six new members are valuable additions to the organization's existing community of leading print experts worldwide, who represent the range of specialties within the field and demonstrate a focus on artists of international repute.   

Currently, the IFPDA encompasses more than 160 members in thirteen countries. Election to membership requires a high level of expertise, ethics, and professional integrity, as well as a commitment to fostering knowledge, stimulating discussion and facilitating the growth of a community interested in works on paper.

IFPDA members-comprising art dealers, galleries and publishers-are vetted based on strict professional criteria, such as the caliber of art offered for sale, exhibitions and published catalogues, and the number of years a dealer or gallery has been in business. Members represent the full range of specialties within the field, ranging from Old Master to Modern and Contemporary prints from around the world.

Benveniste Contemporary (Madrid) is a Danish-owned contemporary print publisher and gallery based in Madrid. The organization specializes in 21st Century prints and editions and is run by a team of professional printers who trained under master printer Dan Albert Benveniste. Since 2006, Benveniste has worked with over 25 artists, including Pat Andrea, Jeronimos Elespe, Jacobo Castellano and Angela de la Cruz, among others. Works produced by Benveniste Contemporary are included in esteemed collections such as the Tate Collection, MoMA, NYPL, Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Statens Kunstfond Copenhagen, Washington Museum of Art, and the National Gallery of South Australia.

Cade Tompkins Projects (Providence, RI) is a long-time print dealer who specializes in Contemporary works and editions, as well as contemporary painting, sculpture, installation, and video. Tompkins originally worked with veteran IFPDA member Brooke Alexander in New York before founding Cade Tompkins Projects in 2009. Since then, Cade Tompkins Projects has featured 31 exhibitions and has undertaken collaborations with institutions including the Rhode Island School of Design's RISD Editions, Brown University, Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Isselbacher Gallery (New York) specializes in the sale of secondary market prints from the late 19th and 20th Century by European and American modern masters. Founded in 1965 by the late Alfred Isselbacher, and now under the directorship of Audrey Isselbacher, former Associate Curator of Prints and Illustrated Books at MoMA, the gallery has exhibited works by esteemed artists such as Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Marc Chagall, Hans Arp and George Braque, among others.

Mike Karstens (Münster) specializes in Post-war and Contemporary works and editions, including portfolios by many leading international artists such as Ellsworth Kelly, Nam June Paik and Claes Oldenburg. Karstens often works in exclusive partnerships with blue-chip artists, and for the last fifteen years has printed and published the prints of Gerhard Richter, Sigmar Polke, Ilya & Emilia Kabakov and others. Founded in 1989, the German atelier has also developed projects such as Richter's monumental 'Strontium' for the De Young Museum in San Francisco and his window at the Cologne Cathedral.

Stamperia d'Arte Berardinelli (Verona) was founded by Luigi Berardinelli in 1971. Berardinelli established his reputation through successful participation in numerous national and international art fairs. As a publisher and print workshop, Stamperia d'Arte Berardinelli specializes in contemporary works and editions, and have collaborated with artists including Piero Dorazio, Mario Schifano, Joseph Beuys, Nan June Paik, Mimmo Rotella, Mimmo Paladino, Enzo Cucchi, Sandro Chia, Joe Tilson, Jim Dine, and, in collaboration with the Archivio Conz, Hermann Nitsch and many other Fluxus artists. 

Michael Woolworth (Paris) is an American-born publisher who is considered to be one of the top printers in France specializing in Contemporary works. Woolworth founded his studio in Paris in 1985, with two hand presses that the studio still uses today. Woolworth has since has worked with artists including Jim Dine, José Maria Sicilia, David Shrigley, Richard Gorman, and Blaise Drummond, and has been recognized as an Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant. In 2011, Woolworth was named a Chevalier dans l'ordre des arts et des lettres by the French culture ministry, and was also honored with the title of Maître d'art (Master Printer).

Please find the full press release here.    

About The IFPDA

Founded in 1987, The International Fine Print Dealers Association is a non-profit organization of expert art dealers dedicated to the highest standards of quality, ethics and connoisseurship. The IFPDA has grown to include nearly 170 members in 13 countries, whose areas of specialization range from old master and modern to contemporary prints, including publishers of prints by renowned contemporary and emerging artists. The IFPDA aims to promote a greater appreciation and a deeper understanding of fine prints among art collectors and the general public through the annual IFPDA Print Fair, as well as public programming, awards, and funding for institutions via its public charity, the IFPDA Foundation.


Pulse NY 2016 3/3-6

The Online Preview of PULSE New York is Now Live on Artsy!

Starting today, visit PULSE New York on to browse and inquire on over 500 artworks for sale in advance of the fair, opening Thursday, March 3rd. 

Before attending, download the Artsy app for iPhone and iPad to explore the online catalogue and find visitor information while on the go.

We look forward to seeing you at the fair!
The PULSE Team

Artsy is the leading resource for learning about and collecting art from over 4,200 leading galleries, 600 museums and institutions, 60 international art fairs and select auctions. Artsy provides free access via its website ( and iPhone and iPad apps to over 350,000 images of art by over 50,000 artists, which constitute the world’s largest online database of contemporary art. Powered by The Art Genome Project, a classification system that maps the connections between artists and artworks, Artsy fosters new generations of art lovers, museum-goers, patrons, and collectors.

KAZUNORI HAMANA, YUJI UEDA, and OTANI WORKSHOP Curated by Takashi Murakami Blum & Poe, New York March 3 – April 9, 2016

Curated by Takashi Murakami
Blum & Poe, New York
March 3 – April 9, 2016
Opening reception: Thursday, March 3, 6 – 8pm

New York, NY (February 25, 2016)Blum & Poe is pleased to present an exhibition of Japanese ceramics featuring the work of Kazunori Hamana, Yuji Ueda, and Otani Workshop — organized and curated by Takashi Murakami.

For this exhibition, Takashi Murakami assembles a new generation of Japanese ceramicists whose unique pottery methods merge a respect for lineage with improvisation, experimentation, and refinement. As with the artists’ previous exhibition at Blum & Poe Los Angeles (September 2015) — Hamana, Ueda, and Otani bring their unique wares and collective imagination to the New York gallery space to create a lucid and otherworldly environment. Central to both the artists' practices and lifestyles, an emphasis on the integrity of natural objects and processes drives this presentation of anthropomorphic clay forms; asymmetrical vessels; and singed, crackling, glazed surfaces. Locally harvested clays are shaped sometimes over the span of many days; mixed with experimental materials to produce unique effects; glazes formed with combinations of metals, ash, and wood; pieces baked in subterranean or above-ground wood-fired kilns. 

This display of ceramics is an illumination of age-old traditions being expanded into the 21st century. Informed by and in conceptual counter to elements of contemporary pop culture, mass production and mass consumption, Kazunori Hamana, for example, creates large ceramic vessels without immediately perceivable use, working without tools and without haste. Many of the works in the exhibition by these three young artists have never been seen before in the United States. 

Kazunori Hamana makes ceramics on the pacific coast, in Chiba, Japan. The work is both stark and full of personality, and oftentimes the surfaces are striped or imbued with designs or language. Urns, bowls, vessels, cups, and plates — each irregularly shaped by not only the vast history of the ceramic arts, but also by the characteristics — are found in the coastal environment where he works.

Yuji Ueda comes from a family of award-winning tea farmers in the Shiga Prefecture town of Shigaraki. His experimental approach to glazing and firing leads to a variety of distinct forms and vessels. Working both in intimate sizes and in larger scales, Ueda’s alien surfaces and fragile textures are both tolerant and unyielding.

Otani Workshop is also based in Shigaraki — one of the great centers of Japanese ceramics for the last 800 years. In addition to clay, Otani works with wood, iron, and other materials. His small jars, vases, and other sculptural forms depicting figures and faces are characteristic of the many styles and motifs found throughout Japanese culture.

Image: Kazunori Hamana, Untitled, c. 2015, Ceramic, 7 1/2 x 8 7/8 x 9 inches, © the artist. Photo: Toru Kometani. Courtesy of the artist and Blum & Poe, Los Angeles/New York/Tokyo

Blum & Poe, New York, 19 East 66th Street, New York, NY 10065
Blum & Poe, Los Angeles, 2727 S. La Cienega Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90034
Blum & Poe, Tokyo, 1-14-34 Jingumaeshibuya, Tokyo, 150-0001

Concurrently on view
Blum & Poe, Los Angeles, through March 12, Dansaekhwa and Minimalism
Blum & Poe, Tokyo, through March 5, Matt Saunders: Two Worlds

Los Angeles, Tuesday – Saturday, 10am–6pm
New York, Monday – Friday, 10am–6pm
Tokyo, Tuesday – Saturday, 11am–7pm

Gallerie St. Etienne, ADD Art Show 2016: Armory 67th St NYC

For Immediate Release 


Egon Schiele. Seated Female Nude, Back View.
Egon Schiele. Seated Female Nude, Back View. 1911. Gouache and pencil on tan wove paper. Initialed and dated, lower right. 17 1/2” x 12 1/8” (44.5 x 30.7 cm). Kallir D. 810.
The Galerie St. Etienne, which has been specializing in the work of the Austrian and German Expressionists since 1939, has unearthed a number of rare finds for the 2016 Art Show. Highlights include:

• Paula Modersohn-Becker’s monumental Reclining Female Nude
Long esteemed in her native Germany, where much of the artist’s small oeuvre is housed in museums, Modersohn-Becker was an important precursor of Expressionism. Major paintings seldom come to market, especially in the United States. Reclining Female Nude represents Modersohn-Becker (who died less than two years after its completion) at her peak. The painting anticipates the work of many subsequent women artists, using the nude to explore female identity rather than as a reflection of male lust.

• Works by Oskar Kokoschka from a private Austrian collection
Comprising a quirky oil portrait, Bob Gesinus-Visser II (with Dog), a watercolor from Kokoschka’s colorful “Dresden period” and three drawings dating from 1912 to 1921, this collection was formed over a period of many years by an Austrian who spent much of his professional life in Belgium. The Kokoschkas are at the heart of a collection that also included works by Gustav Klimt, Alfred Kubin and Egon Schiele, and that was honored with a comprehensive exhibition at the Oberösterreichisches Landesmuseum, Linz, in 2005.

• And in addition…
Works by Galerie St. Etienne favorites such as Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt and Grandma Moses round out the gallery’s Art Show installation. The Schiele presentation includes watercolors and drawings dating from the artist’s Expressionist “breakthrough” to his more classical later period. Grandma Moss is represented by Sugaring Off, one of her best-loved winter subjects.

Please visit us at
the ADAA Art Show,
   Booth D 22
Park Avenue Armory
at 67th Street, New York City
Kokoschka: Girl on Red Sofa
Kokoschka: Girl on Red Sofa (detail)
Kirchner: Bust of a Nude Girl with Arms Outstretched
Kirchner: Bust of a Nude Girl with Arms Outstretched (detail)
Paula Modersohn-Becker: Nude
Modersohn-Becker: Reclining Female Nude (detail)
Digital Catalogue
Baskin, Beckmann, Heckel, Kirchner, Klimt, Kokoschka, Kollwitz, Modersohn-Becker, Grandma Moses, Schiele
and others
At the Gallery
Paula Modersohn-Becker:
    Art and Life

Through March 12
About The Art Show
Gala Preview, March 1
March 2 through 6
Wednesday through Friday,
   12:00 to 8 PM
Saturday12:00 to 7:00 PM
Sunday12:00 to 5:00 PM
For further information,
please contact Courtney Donner at 212-245-6734

The Galerie St. Etienne
24 West 57th Street, New York
Tel (212) 245-6734
Fax (212) 765-8493
TuesdayFriday11 AM–5 PM

ART Weel NY is Coming: One Mile Gallery, Scope New York, March 3-6th

One Mile Gallery

Mark Hogancamp at
SCOPE New YorkMarch 3-6, 2016
Untitled 2009 Mark Hogancamp©Mark Hogancamp

With over 75 art fairs spanning more than 15 years, SCOPE is celebrated as the premier showcase for international emerging contemporary art and multi-disciplinary creative programming. Renowned for its uncanny ability to forecast new visual trends that are embraced globally, SCOPE Art Shows garner extensive critical acclaim and over 500 million annual impressions across print, digital and television. With cumulative sales well over one billion dollars and attendance of 1.2 million visitors, SCOPE Art Show is the largest and most global emerging art fair in the world.

Platinum First View
Thursday | Mar 3 | 2PM - 4PM

VIP | Press Preview
Thursday | Mar 3 | 4PM - 6PM

Thursday | Mar 3 | 6PM - 10PM
Friday | Mar 4 | 11AM – 8PM
Saturday | Mar 5 | 11AM – 8PM
Sunday | Mar 6 | 11AM – 8PM


639 W 46th St
New York, NY 10036

Tickets available here

Untitled Mark Hogancamp
©Mark Hogancamp
Mark Hogancamp is a photographer and storyteller, but prefers to think of himself as a film director. He’s the creator of Marwencol, a 1/6 scale, WWII-era Belgian village in which he stages and photographs a complex narrative of Nazi intrigue, lesbian melodrama, and Sgt. Rock-style heroics. With his immense cast of dolls, Mark freely intermixes history and fantasy, allowing Kurt Russell to confront Goebbels, time-traveling witches to antagonize Hitler, and Mark himself to battle personal demons.

On April 8, 2000, Mark Hogancamp was attacked outside of a bar by five men who beat him nearly to death. After nine days in a coma and 40 days in the hospital, Hogancamp was discharged with brain damage that left him little memory of his previous life. Unable to afford therapy, Hogancamp created his own by building a 1/6-scale World War II-era Belgian town called Marwencol in his yard and populating it with dolls representing himself, his friends, and his attackers. In the ensuing years, Hogancamp has rehabilitated his physical wounds by building from scratch the town’s structures and meticulously customizing the small dolls and props; he has come to terms with his psychological ones by involving these figures in elaborate and often violent narratives related to his attack and recovery. Hogancamp’s photographs of the town debuted in ESOPUS 5 in 2005; he was the subject of ESOPUS subscriber Jeff Malmberg’s critically acclaimed documentary Marwencol in 2010. In 2013, filmmaker Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Cast Away) announced that he would direct a feature film based on Hogancamp’s life and work from a script written by Caroline Thompson (Edward Scissorhands).


Opening in Kingston June 4, 2016

Uncannyland explores the connotations of the word “uncanny” as it refers to landscape. Used by Sigmund Freud in his 1919 treatise, “The Uncanny”, the word derives from the negation of the German heimlich,which means belonging to the house, familiar, tame, intimate, homey. The inherent dialectic here is revealed at the moment when the familiar becomes uncomfortable, even frightening. Freud identifies the pivotal point in this phenomenon as the instant when our certainty of ourselves, and the safety of our hearth and home, come into question.
Uncannyland presents the work of three artists who investigate the tipping point, where one’s everyday sense of security becomes threatened by the unfamiliar, Freudian “uncanny.”
Curator Beth Kantrowitz (co-director of Allston Skirt Gallery, Boston) and artist, curator Kathleen O’Hara (co-director of OHT Gallery, Boston) were among the founding members of Boston’s SoWa arts district. After leaving the South End in search of a non-traditional gallery model, they opened Drive-by Projects in Watertown, MA. Working together for the past six years, Kantrowitz and O’Hara have striven to present small, lively exhibitions in their storefront space and bring this exhibit to One Mile Gallery.

Ben Sloat Black Raincloud

 ©Ben Sloat

     Add your name to our mailing list for announcements

Contact the gallery at
or telephone 845 338 2035 or 917 715 2877
One Mile Gallery
475 Abeel Street Kingston NY 12401

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

PULSE New York will return from March 3-6, 2016 to the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea at 125 West 18th Street.

The Exclusive VIP Preview of PULSE New York 2016 is Now Live on Artsy! 

As a PULSE VIP, we invite you to explore a first look at PULSE New York on Visit the online catalogue to browse and inquire on artworks for sale in advance of the fair, opening Thursday, March 3rd.

Before attending, download the Artsy app for iPhone and iPad to explore artists, exhibitors, and artworks while on the go.

Should you have any questions about collecting through the PULSE preview on Artsy, please contact to be connected with a specialist.

We look forward to seeing you at the fair!
The PULSE Team


Art Market San Francisco, the Bay Area's leading modern and contemporary art fair, returns to Fort Mason's Festival Pavilion from April 27 - May 1, 2016. Art Market San Francisco welcomed a record-breaking 25,000 visitors in 2015 . The fair's sixth edition will build on this incredible momentum, welcoming important collectors and curators with unique and unexpected installations, presentations of the best in modern and contemporary art by seventy-five top galleries, and a highly-anticipated program of talks, tours, and special projects. 

Pace Art + Technology joins Art Market San Francisco's sixth edition to present new work by teamLab, highlighting the innovative new gallery's current exhibition of teamLab's immersive, large-scale environments. Joining Pace Art + Technology this spring are vibrant local galleries, all returning Art Market San Francisco participants, including Catharine Clark Gallery, Rena Bransten Projects, Ever Gold Gallery, Johansson Projects, Jenkins Johnson Gallery, and Romer Young G allery as well as ground-breaking contemporary galleries from across the country including Chandran Gallery, Hashimoto Contemporary, PDX CONTEMPORARY ART, JONATHAN FERRARA GALLERY, and New Image Art. The historically accented Brian Gross Fine Art, Paul Thiebaud Gallery, and ADLER&Co. also return to the fair this year to exhibit top Modernist work alongside New York City's Nancy Hoffman Gallery and Forum Gallery.

Art Market San Francisco's sixth edition features a new partnership with San Francisco boutique luxury hotel the Clift, providing fantastic accommodations for out-of-town visitors.  The 2016 fair will also continue the tradition of collaboration with The Battery, the Bay Area's exclusive multi-disciplinary social club. Driven by longstanding relationships and partnerships with the Bay Area's top cultural institutions and the city's most influential companies - including Google, IDEO, and Gap Inc., Art Market San Francisco remains the Bay Area's premier fine art event.

Art Market San Francisco will open with a Benefit Preview Reception for longtime partner the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, comprising the de Young and the Legion of Honor. Hosted by Honorary Chairs Jack Calhoun and Trent Norris, this lively party  will take place on Wednesday, April 27 and is open exclusively to event donors and ticket holders.

To learn more about Art Market San Francisco's sixth edition and to apply, please visit

Monday, February 22, 2016

Tina Kim Gallery presents

March 2 – April 2, 2016

Opening Reception 
March 2, 6PM – 8PM

New York, NY (February 22, 2016)—Tina Kim Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of work by Japanese-Brazilian artist Tomie Ohtake, a central figure in the history of Brazilian abstraction. From her first publically exhibited works in the mid-1950s until her death in 2015, Ohtake's dedicated exploration of the formal, temporal, and, arguably, spiritual aspects of color, shape, and gesture has resulted in an extraordinary deep catalogue of work that has too rarely been seen outside of Latin America. On view from March 2 – April 2, 2016, this exhibition is the artist's first in the United States in over 20 years, providing a broad view of the nuanced practice of this master of pictorial space and form.

One of the leading proponents of a painting style that privileged a gestural, informal approach, Ohtake departed from the dominant strain of concrete, geometric abstraction that was strongly associated with international movements of the earlier 20th Century in Brazil and beyond. After moving from her birthplace of Kyoto to Brazil in 1936, she became closely associated with the Seibi group, an informal network of Japanese-Brazilian artists united by an interest in abstraction. Yet she was also connected to wider groups of critics and artists, including Willys de Castro, Mário Pedrosa, Paulo Herkenhoff, and Mira Schendel among others. Her multiple affiliations and connections freed her from alignment with any one particular approach to art making and positioned her on a relatively singular artistic path.

Ohtake’s formal economy is remarkable  everything is exactly as it needed to be, no more or no less. Above all, her work is united by an inquisitive and experimental spirit that ultimately focuses on the experience of the work itself, both for the maker and for the viewer. Her paintings, even the geometrically inflected ones, always retain a fundamental interest in atmosphere and its effects. To retain a clear focus on the experience of the work in and of itself, Ohtake eschews metaphor and specific material references to such a degree that every one of her works is untitled. Her process was always evolving, but consistently deliberate, thoughtful and specific throughout her career.

To trace this evolution, Tina Kim Gallery’s exhibition includes work from an active fifty-year span of Ohtake's career, from 1956-2010. The chronology begins with compositions from the mid-1950s that demonstrate the origins of her sensitivity to color and strong formal composition that exist throughout her years of work. In her pieces from the late 1950s, we see the brushstrokes loosening and forms getting more ethereal. During this same time period, Ohtake began experimenting with "blind paintings" in which she painted blindfolded in order to free her artistic process from the strictures of vision. The resulting works are haunting and expressive, seeming to coalesce in momentary formations before becoming something else. Following this series, her work then returns to more specifically structured and geometrically focused compositions. Indeed, in the late 1960s, she begins to play with printmaking, creating bold and expressly graphic works that skillfully take advantage of the medium, clarifying new formal concerns that will translate into her paintings of the period and broaden her experimentation with color.

In the centralized, delineated forms and surfaces of a selection of paintings from the late 1970s and 1980s, one can trace motifs and spatial relationships that reappear throughout her oeuvre  circles, ovals, arcs, mounds, in tones both earthly and vibrant. The surfaces become increasingly complex, layered and active, and careful viewing reveals layer upon layer of paint that cumulatively builds a remarkable depth of hue. In the most recent paintings on view, Ohtake clarifies her geometric and color concerns even further, tightening compositions and activating surfaces in works that invite contemplation and immersion into the logic of her work.


Tomie Ohtake was born in Kyoto, Japan in 1913 and lived in São Paulo, Brazil from 1936 until her death in early 2015. She began working as an artist professionally only in her late 30s, immersing herself in an exploration of abstraction first in paint, and expanding into printmaking and sculpture in later years. Throughout her long and prolific career, she was the subject of numerous solo exhibitions, including several at Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo since her first in 1957; major exhibitions at the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; Barbican Centre, London; The Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro; and a retrospective at the Instituto Tomie Ohtake in São Paulo upon the occasion of her 100th birthday, among many others. She has participated in numerous international biennial exhibitions, including Venice, Havana, Cuenca and eight iterations of the São Paulo Bienal. Since the 1980s, Ohtake has produced several major public sculptures for cities and towns all across Brazil, including iconic pieces throughout her hometown of São Paulo like the murals adorning the Consolacao stop of the Metro. In 2001, Instituto Tomie Ohtake opened its doors in São Paulo with a program dedicated to illuminating contemporary art since the 1950s and preserving the legacy of Tomie Ohtake.


Founded in 2001, Tina Kim Gallery annually participates in more than twelve international fairs and is devoted to showcasing contemporary art. The gallery is affiliated with Kukje in Seoul, South Korea, regularly collaborating on exhibitions that feature both emerging and internationally renowned artists. Tina Kim Gallery also works closely with Vintage 20, a private dealer specializing in mid-century furniture and design.

Tina Kim Gallery is open Tuesday – Saturday 10 AM – 6 PM
Connect with the gallery on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter and visit

Image:  Tomie Ohtake, Untitled, 1980. Oil on canvas 39.37 x 39.37 inches (100 x 100 cm). Image courtesy of Everton Ballardin © Galeria Nara Roesler

First Exhibition Marking 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther’s “Ninety-Five Theses” Presented by Minneapolis Institute of Art

Exhibition Features Newly Excavated Objects Offering New Insights into Luther’s Personal Life and Many Works of Art Never-Before-Seen Outside of Germany

Exhibition Launches International Collaboration with Germany’s Leading Institutions Preserving Luther’s Legacy


MINNEAPOLIS, MN [February 22, 2016] – This fall, the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia) will mark the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s “Ninety-Five Theses on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences” by presenting the first exhibition in the United States to explore the indelible impact of the Protestant Reformation through major works of art. On view from October 30, 2016 through January 15, 2017, “Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” will feature paintings, sculptures, gold, textiles, and works on paper—many of which have never before left Germany—as well as Luther’s personal possessions and recent archeological finds from his homes to shed new light on the critical religious, cultural and societal changes of this tumultuous and transformative period. The exhibition is the first in a series of international initiatives commemorating this important moment, which will be observed around the world on October 31, 2017.

“Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” at Mia is organized in partnership with four German institutions—the State Museum of Prehistory in Halle, Luther Memorials Foundation in Saxony-Anhalt, German Historical Museum in Berlin, and Foundation Schloss Friedenstein in Gotha. The Luther House in Wittenberg, Germany is closed in 2016 for major renewals of its permanent exhibition for the Jubilee Year 2017, which has allowed key works to travel to Mia for this first-of-its-kind exhibition.

“We are thrilled to launch the international commemoration of this watershed moment in history with such an extraordinary exhibition,” said Kaywin Feldman, the Duncan and Nivin MacMillan Director and President of Mia. “Minnesota is home to one of the largest Lutheran populations in the nation, so this story has a special resonance here. We are proud to partner with our peers in Germany, and look forward to engaging our local audiences and visitors from around the world with the art and objects that were at the heart of the Reformation.”

“Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” will place particular emphasis on Luther’s support of art as a tool for worship, teaching, and propaganda. Among the works on view will be paintings by Lucas Cranach the Elder (1472-1553), who was inspired by Luther’s preaching to develop didactic paintings that vividly depict the viewer’s choice between salvation and damnation. Cranach’s narrative paintings illustrate biblical stories in brilliant colors and ravishing—sometimes gory—detail, and his stylized portraits capture the humanist spirit of the age. Additionally, several vandalized objects by other artists will be presented to underscore the intense emotional reaction in the wake of Luther’s protest.

A major portion of the exhibition devoted to Luther’s personal life will feature recent archaeological finds from his boyhood homes in the towns of Eisleben and Mansfeld, as well as his house in Wittenberg, the base for his history-making activities. Excavations, undertaken in 2004 and 2005, uncovered household goods that reveal new information about Luther and his family. A selection of those objects will be displayed for the first time in the United States and offer new insights into Luther’s daily life, especially his childhood.

“The objects in this exhibition have strong visual and emotional presence. Not only do they tell the fascinating story of the man and his impact on religion and politics, but they also continue to reverberate today,” said Tom Rassieur, Mia’s John E. Andrus III Curator of Prints. “With the incredibly generous support of our German colleagues, we are excited to be able to share spectacular works of art and new discoveries with the public, and to vividly bring Luther’s world to life for contemporary audiences.”
Exhibition Themes and Highlights
“Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” will be organized chronologically and comprise eight primary sections:
  • “Boyhood,” in which the archeological findings at Luther’s childhood homes will be displayed;
  • “Secular Power,” which features rare paintings, prints, sculpture depicting the rulers and courtly life of the era, as well as opulent status symbols belonging to the most powerful men of the age;
  • “Pre-Reformation Piety,” which presents paintings, carvings, goldsmith’s work, and vestments associated with late medieval and early renaissance Catholic practice;
  • “Luther as Monk, Scholar, and Preacher” includes the notorious indulgence chest of Wittenburg, a 1517 printed copy of the “Ninety-Five Theses,” and the final pulpit from which Luther preached—newly-restored for the exhibition;
  • “Luther’s Theology” features Lucas Cranach’s Law and Grace, the 157-panel Gotha Altar, and some of Luther’s own hand-written notes for his translation of the Bible;
  • “Luther’s House as the hub of the Reformation,” featuring the furniture from his studio, his personal possessions, portraits of Luther, his wife Katarina von Bora, and their associates, as well as additional archeological finds from Luther’s home—from jewelry and pen knives to tiles and glass—that embody his daily life and international status;
  • “Polemics and Conflicts” underscores the turbulence of the era through vandalized works of art, satirical woodcuts, weaponry and war trophies; and
  • “The Legend,” which highlights the establishment of Luther’s posthumous reputation through memorial objects such as the model for his grave marker, the debating stand of the University of Wittenburg, and relics that gave his followers tangible bonds to their spiritual leader.

Additional highlights from the exhibition include:
[if !supportLists]        [endif]Sixteen paintings from Lucas Cranach the Elder’s studio, two-thirds of which are autographed, including Martin Luther (c. 1541), The Death of Holophernes (1531), and Law and Grace (1529), one of the most influential allegories of the Reformation, which underscores Luther’s belief in faith as the path to salvation. Several of these works also showcase a shift from the lifelike compositions of the Renaissance to more stylized figural representations, solidifying Luther’s use of art as a tool for communicating to a broader public.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]Old and New Testament, the so-called Ortenburg Bible (1535), a hand-colored copy of Luther’s complete translation of the Bible into German.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]Luther’s studio furniture and other personal effects, including his ornate folding travel spoon and his beer stein.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]Rarely seen 16th-century editions of the Bible in contemporary German vernacular, as well as a selection of 16th-century publications that demonstrate Luther’s intolerance of corruption and his concern for women.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]The Altar of the Virgin Mary from Naumburg Cathedral, a carved and polychromed altar produced around 1500.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]The Heiltumsbuch of Friedrich the Wise, the first illustrated manuscript ever printed.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]Pope Leo X’s Bull of Excommunication against Luther, in three early editions.
[if !supportLists]        [endif]Recently discovered remains of an alchemist’s laboratory.

Programming and Catalogue 
“Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue, as well as a new book of essays, which will serve as a fundamental work resource in Luther studies for the next decade. In the book of essays, forty European and American authors tackle subjects that set the stage for Luther’s activities. They closely examine the various phases of his life, his theology and his translation of the Bible, as well as his intellectual, spiritual, and economic environment; the Reformation as a media revolution; his relationship with Jews and Muslims; reformation art and architecture, Lutheran memorial culture, Lutheranism in America, Martin Luther and Martin Luther King, in addition to other topics. Both volumes will appear in English and German.

Programming related to the exhibition will include a lecture series featuring Professor Harald Meller, Director of the State Museum of Pre-History, Halle, who conceived of the exhibition; Professor Christiane Andersson, Bucknell University, an expert on Reformation art and censorship; and, Tom Rassieur, Mia’s curator collaborating on the exhibition. Mia will engage youth groups through programs on protest art. Additional programming details will be announced in the coming months.
“Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” has been made possible by the support of the Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany within the framework of the Luther Decade and is presented by Thrivent Financial. Lead sponsors for this exhibition are John and Nancy Lindahl, The Hognander Foundation, the K.A.H.R. Foundation, and Thomson Reuters.
About Martin Luther

When Martin Luther (1483-1546) posted his “Ninety-Five Theses on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences” on the doors of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, he cracked the foundations of papal authority and set in motion a revolution that would reshape Western civilization. Luther’s story is intimately connected to the collapse of medieval society and the birth of the modern age—by translating the Bible into contemporary German vernacular and disseminating his teachings through the newly invented printing press, he not only eroded Catholic authority, but also epitomized how the right tools, and strategic use of technology, could spur near-immediate and irreversible change.

Luther was born to a mining family in Germany in 1483. At age seven, he enrolled in school and became an avid student of grammar, rhetoric and logic, eventually entering the University of Erfurt to earn a Master of Arts degree in the field. Although he initially intended to practice law, Luther became increasingly interested in theology, philosophy and scripture as a source for assurances about life. In 1507, he was ordained to the priesthood, and later awarded his Doctor of Theology from the University of Wittenberg, at which he spent the remainder of his career as a professor of theology.

It was shortly after entering the monastery that Luther began to doubt that the Church could offer salvation. A visit to Rome in 1511 solidified this view as he witnessed rampant corruption, and was particularly outraged by the issue of “indulgences,” or certificates that could be purchased to gain forgiveness of sins and freedom from purgatory. On October 31, 1517, Luther decided to publish his opinions on the matter of indulgences—and the conclusion that faith, not the Church, would guarantee salvation—by posting the “Ninety-Five Theses” to the door of the Castle Church. These were then taken to the university printing press and produced in Latin and German, and within four weeks had spread far beyond Germany—ultimately giving rise to what would become the Protestant tradition.
About The Minneapolis Institute of Art
Home to more than 89,000 works of art representing 5,000 years of world history, the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia) inspires wonder, spurs creativity, and nourishes the imagination. With extraordinary exhibitions and one of the finest wide-ranging art collections in the country—Rembrandt to van Gogh, Monet to Matisse, Asian to African—Mia links the past to the present, enables global conversations, and offers an exceptional setting for inspiration.

General admission to Mia is always free. Some special exhibitions have a nominal admission fee. General admission for “Martin Luther: Art of the Reformation” is $20.

Museum Hours
Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday            10am–5pm
Thursday, Friday                                  10am–9pm
Sunday                                                 11am–5pm
Monday                                               Closed
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