Midwest Modernisms

August 28, 2022 through January 29, 2023
The idea of the Midwest as a geographic region with fluid borders in the mid-twentieth century when artists navigated, negotiated, and incorporated international and regional influences, is at the heart of this exhibition drawn from the Museum’s collection.

Artists such as Schomer Lichtner and Ruth Grotenrath, who translated wide-reaching, global inspirations including the collages of Henri Matisse and the silkscreens of Pop Art, exemplify this negotiation. Homegrown subjects seemed natural to others, like Andy Warhol, who referenced their birthplaces and mined Midwestern themes throughout their careers.

The exhibition highlights how artists embraced modernism in its many forms, while anchoring their imagery in local landscapes and avian themes. Through more than forty artworks, the exhibition explores how New York City-centered modernism is fractured and translated into multiple art movements – modernisms – with distinct regional characteristics.

Exhibition Highlights

oil painting of abstract white rooster with a green-blue background
oil painting of a bird feeding four baby birds within a nest
casein painting featuring a small white and blue teapot and cup a-fixed on top of a small table with another painting of two white birds behind them. Next to the two white birds painting stands another with several fish in a uniform postion
casein painting of an abstract rooster with blue background
painting featuring several black outlined chickens and roosters withe a blue, red, green, and white background
This ink and watercolor painting depicts a pink rooster with orange head and legs. The standing rooster, seen from the side, looks backward with its left foot raised.
oil painting of abstract white rooster with a green-blue background
Milton Avery, 3 A.M., 1958, oil on canvas board
oil painting of a bird feeding four baby birds within a nest
Philip Evergood, Happy Birds Nesting, 1953, oil on hardboard
casein painting featuring a small white and blue teapot and cup a-fixed on top of a small table with another painting of two white birds behind them. Next to the two white birds painting stands another with several fish in a uniform postion
Ruth Grotenrath, Untitled, ca. 1960, casein on Japanese paper
casein painting of an abstract rooster with blue background
Schomer Lichtner, Untitled (Rooster), ca. 1940, casein on kraft paper
painting featuring several black outlined chickens and roosters withe a blue, red, green, and white background
Schomer Lichtner, Untitled (Rooster), ca. 1970, acrylic on hardboard
This ink and watercolor painting depicts a pink rooster with orange head and legs. The standing rooster, seen from the side, looks backward with its left foot raised.
Andy Warhol, Rooster, 1958, ink and watercolor on paper

Thanks to the members, donors, grantors, and sponsors who support exhibitions and programs.
Exhibitions and programs are supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts. Marketing is supported in part by City of Wausau Room Tax funds.

 

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