Upcoming Exhibitions

Elizabeth Atterbury

Demo, 2012

Silver gelatin print, 11 x 14 inches

currents7: Elizabeth Atterbury

January 27, 2015 - May 10, 2015


 This series returns with an exhibition of work by Elizabeth Atterbury, an artist based in Portland, Maine. Recently, Atterbury has broadened her material practice to more fully consider the incongruities between photography and its subjects. For currents7, Atterbury continues to test the representational conviction of the photographic image. She will create an environmental installation that incorporates both photography and sculpture with the result being that the deformations across media function allegorically, pointing to the irreconcilability of, for instance, one's personal narrative and the historical record.

Ada in Black Sweater

Alex Katz

Ada in Black Sweater, 1957

Oil on masonite, 24 x 18 inches

Gift of the artist

Brand-New & Terrific: Alex Katz in the 1950s

July 11, 2015 - October 18, 2015


The 1950s saw American artist Alex Katz (b. 1927) take up and master painting directly from nature, lay claim to Abstract Expressionism's size and scale on behalf of figurative painting, and innovate with collages and cutouts. It was a decade in which he looked to the portraiture of Édouard Manet for lessons in the relationship between figure and ground, and the one in which he met Ada, his most enduring model. Given the overwhelming popularity of painterly abstraction, this was also a period when he destroyed hundreds of canvases, and those that survived had little to no audience. This major exhibition will introduce audiences to an overlooked body of work and consider it within the context of the aesthetic commitments of the decade. Brand-New & Terrific: Alex Katz in the 1950s features sixty-five paintings, cutouts, and collages, including many on loan from the artist and major public and private collections.

Details about the exhibition tour coming soon.

Chelsea in Ice

James McNeill Whistler

Chelsea in Ice, 1864

Oil on canvas, 17 3/4 x 24 in.

The Lunder Collection

Whistler in the World: The Lunder Collection of James McNeill Whistler at the Colby College Museum of Art

September 15, 2015 - January 10, 2016


In his "Ten O'Clock Lecture" in 1885, the American James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903) presented himself as an artist set apart from the public, bearing no relation to the historical moment he lived in. However, the myth of artistic independence that Whistler developed was but one part of a complex and highly significant relationship he had with the world around him. As a painter, printmaker, designer, traveller, and performer, Whistler engaged with a variety of places, people, and ideas that stretched from the United States to London, Venice, and Japan. Drawn entirely from the renowned Lunder Collection, this comprehensive exhibition will place nearly one hundred featured art works, including the finest examples of his prints, into a dynamic international and cosmopolitan context. The exhibition and its accompanying catalogue will explore how his art and identity were impacted and shaped by the encounters he had as he traversed the global art worlds of the nineteenth century. 

Edward Steichen

Edward Steichen (American, 1879-1973)

Moonlight on the Narrows, 1905

Oil on canvas

The Lunder Collection

Aesthetic Harmonies: Whistler in Context

September 17, 2015 - January 3, 2016


Aesthetic Harmonies explores the many artistic, social, and historical contexts in which we can situate the artist James McNeill Whistler. Drawing from the museum's rich collections of European, American, and Asian art, the exhibition reexamines Whistler's relationship to the Etching Revival in Britain, French Realism, American Impressionism, and transatlantic Aestheticism. It also places the artist's experiments with color, form, beauty, and nature in dialogue with early American modernism, mid-twentieth-century abstraction, and contemporary art. Aesthetic Harmonies thus constructs a history of modern art through Whistler's diverse practices, philosophies, and influences. This exhibition is curated by Associate Professor of Art Tanya Sheehan and the students in AR497 (fall 2014).