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Photography from various periods in American history comes together in separate but related exhibitions at the Colby College Museum of Art this summer. American Modern showcases photographs from the 1930s by American masters Berenice Abbott, Margaret Bourke-White, and Walker Evans with loans from major collections including the Metropolitan Museum, the National Gallery of Art, and the Art Institute of Chicago. Recent photographs by Andrew Moore illustrate Detroit’s challenges, and a selection of works from a recent gift highlights images by notable photographers such as Berenice Abbott and Ansel Adams.
Also on view will be a selection of prints by James McNeill Whistler, presented in honor of the late curator and print scholar David P. Becker.
This summer’s exhibitions at Colby will close Oct. 2, just prior to the groundbreaking for the museum’s new addition, which is scheduled to open in summer 2013. Following a brief closure in the fall of 2011, select galleries will remain open throughout the construction process. For more information visit www.colby.edu/museum.
American Modern: Abbott, Evans, Bourke-White
July 9–October 2
In the 1930s, photographers pushed the genre of documentary photography to the forefront of public culture in the United States and onto the walls of newly opened museums and art galleries. That historic development is explored in this exhibition focusing exclusively on the work of American photographers Berenice Abbott, Walker Evans, and Margaret Bourke-White. Organized by the Amon Carter Museum and the Colby Museum, the exhibition comes to Waterville after its display at the Art Institute of Chicago.
Andrew Moore: Detroit Disassembled
June 2–October 2 Organized to coincide with American Modern: Abbott, Evans, Bourke-White, this exhibition presents seven works—all recent gifts to the Colby collection—from Andrew Moore’s Detroit Disassembled series. Made in 2008 and 2009, these highly detailed color photographs capture the citywide impact of Detroit’s industrial decline and the gradual encroachment of nature on the city most associated with American mobility.
Celebrating a Gift: The Norma B. Marin Photography Collection
Norma B. Marin began collecting photographs in 1970, gradually acquiring works by such major practitioners as Berenice Abbott, Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, Charles Sheeler, Lee Friedlander, Harry Callahan, and André Kertész. For several years, through a long-term loan, the Colby Museum has integrated works from the Marin photography collection into its exhibitions and teaching programs. In the spring of 2011, Norma Marin promised her collection to the museum, dramatically transforming the breadth and depth its photography offerings. This exhibition presents selections from this generous gift.
Exhibiting Whistler: A Tribute to David P. Becker
June 16–October 2
A Bowdoin College alumnus and longtime resident of Portland, David P. Becker (1947–2010) was also an internationally recognized print scholar and curator. Selected from the Lunder Collection by guest curator Susan Schulman, this tribute exhibition celebrates Becker’s passion for the print medium, his impeccable connoisseurship, and his work as guest curator, beginning in 2006, of several Whistler exhibitions at the Colby Museum.
Also on view through October 2:
Inspired by Buddhism: Asian Art from the Permanent Collection
Little Elegies: The Art of Nineteenth-Century Mourning
Selections from the Permanent Collection: Genre, Still Life, Landscape
The Colby College Museum of Art is open Sunday noon to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed on Mondays.