Press Release

CMA 2013 Major Exhibitions

COLUMBIA, SC - The Columbia Museum of Art offers changing exhibitions from renowned museums and institutions from around the world. In 2013, the CMA celebrates artistic creativity with four major exhibitions that engage the mind and enrich the spirit.

Mark Rothko: The Decisive Decade 1940-1950
through January 6

Featuring 37 works including paintings, watercolors and works on paper, this exhibition is drawn largely from the collection of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. This is the first significant exhibition of Mark Rothko’s work to be on display in South Carolina. Visitors are absorbed by Rothko’s powerful and mystical style of painting as they follow his journey as an artist. “This is not an exhibition that needs to justify its existence,” the artist’s son, Christopher Rothko, said. “On the contrary, the only thing that needs to be explained is its tardiness, because within the realm of Rothko’s oeuvre, the works in this exhibition are the key to everything. Everything.” The exhibition is presented through the generosity of First Citizens Bank.

Impressionism from Monet to Matisse
January 25 – April 21

The CMA showcases 55 masterworks from the Dixon Gallery and Gardens in Memphis, TN. Paintings by the well-known leaders of French Impressionism including Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro and Alfred Sisley, and paintings by America’s most noted Impressionist painters; Mary Cassatt and John Singer Sargent, are featured in this exhibition. Major modern paintings by Paul Cézanne, Paul Gauguin and Georges Braque are on display next to the Impressionists. “The Dixon’s French Impressionist paintings are utterly beautiful but they are also works of considerable historical significance,” Dixon Gallery and Gardens Director Kevin Sharp said. “Some of these paintings were first seen in the original Impressionist shows of the 1870s and 1880s in Paris. These remarkable paintings speak eloquently to a fascinating age and the triumph of modern art in Europe.” The exhibition is presented through the generosity of BB&T.

Found in Translation: The Geometric Abstraction of Steven Naifeh
May 18 – September 1

Pulitzer Prize winner and South Carolina resident Steven Naifeh is simultaneously fascinated with the history of Western art and with motifs derived from Islamic art. He combines these influences in his powerful, large-scale and colorful abstract art. This exhibition of Naifeh’s art shows visitors that what we share culturally is perhaps greater than what separates us. Abstract art is capable of expressing complex ideas like unity and continuity. “We all need to understand more about the world in which we live, and Naifeh’s exhibition is a smart, vibrant way of encountering Middle Eastern ideas,” CMA chief curator Will South said. The exhibition is presented through the generosity of The Hilliard Family Foundation.

Annie Leibovitz: Pilgrimage
October 5 - January 5, 2014

Annie Leibovitz: Pilgrimage charts a new direction for one of America’s best-known living photographers. Unlike her staged and carefully lit portraits made on assignment for magazines and advertising clients, these 78 photographs were taken simply because Leibovitz was moved by the subject. The exhibition is an evocative and deeply personal statement by a photographer, whose career now spans more than 40 years, encompassing a broad range of subject matter, history and stylistic influences. “These pictures may surprise even those who know Leibovitz’s photography well,” guest curator Andy Grundberg, former New York Times photography critic, said. “They are more intimate, personal and self-reflective than her widely published work, combining the emotional power of her recent black-and-white portraits of her family with an awareness of her own cultural legacy. All photographs are in a sense intimations of mortality, but the pictures of Pilgrimage make this connection explicit.” The exhibition is presented through the generosity of Susan Thorpe and John Baynes.

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