PULLMAN, Wash. — The Washington State University Museum of Art begins its fall schedule Aug. 14 with “The American Vision: A Collection Survey,” featuring highlights from WSU’s Permanent Collection and works from the collections of the Washington Art Consortium.
The exhibition is organized around four distinct areas, each representing an aspect of the American vision: “Nature and Nation,” “Identity and Place,” “Image and (Sub) Text,” and “Imagination and Invention.” Each section contains unexpected and revealing combinations of works, showing the changes and continuities in American art and life during the 20th century. The installation and selection intends to challenge some common preconceptions about the influence of culture on art and about the status of American art in the international community.
The works on display in “The American Vision” represent the American Art Collection from the museum’s permanent collection, featuring paintings and prints by several well-known American artists, including Thomas Hart Benton, Jim Dine, George Inness, Roy Lichtenstein, Nam June Paik and Andy Warhol. Selections from the Washington Art Consortium’s photography and works on paper collections are also on display, including works by Diane Arbus, Lee Friedlander, Jacob Lawrence, Richard Misrach and Claes Oldenburg.
The WSU Museum of Art owns the Washington Art Consortium collections in partnership with other Washington museum members, including the Cheney Cowles Museum, the Henry Art Gallery at the University of Washington, the Seattle Art Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, the Western Gallery at Western Washington University, and the Whatcom Museum of History and Art.
Also on display during the exhibition will be “Celebration of Heritage” by the late Jacob Lawrence. The lithograph was recently donated to the museum’s Elwood Collection of Northwest Art by WSU alumnus Sean Elwood.
On Sept. 11, the show will be augmented by an exhibition of work by well-known American visionary artist Morris Graves, representing another facet of the American vision.
“Morris Graves: Instruments for a New Navigation,” features previously unexhibited three-dimensional works, begun in Ireland in 1959 and completed 40 years later, and related works on paper from the 1940s through the 1990s. WSU is the only eastern Washington venue to host the traveling exhibition of work from the artist’s private collection through the Schmidt-Bingham Gallery in New York, and from the collections of the Bank of America, the University of Oregon and the Tacoma Art Museum.
An opening reception for the public for both exhibitions will take place at 6 p.m. Sept. 14 at in the Fine Arts Center atrium. The two exhibitions will run concurrently through Oct. 15.
Beginning Aug. 14, regular hours for the WSU Museum of Art will be Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 1-5 p.m., with extended hours for football Saturdays and some other special events. The museum will be closed Sept. 3-4 for Labor Day. The gallery is wheelchair accessible. All events are free and open to the public.
Parking permits for weekday visitors may be purchased at the Cougar Depot at Davis Way (State Highway 270) and State Street, or at WSU Parking Services on Wilson Road, directly uphill from the Fine Arts Center. On weekday evenings, parking is available in the Fine Arts parking structure, off Stadium Way at Grimes Way, for an hourly fee. Weekend parking is free. Call 509/335-1910 for more information.
Funding for museum exhibitions and programs is provided by WSU, the Friends of the Museum of Art and private donors. Additional support has been provided by the Pullman Community Foundation/Foundation Northwest; Pullman Kiwanis Club; Tri-State Distributors; the U.S. West Foundation; the Washington Mutual Foundation; the WSU Visual, Performing and Literary Arts Committee; and private donors.