Heartland Art from Your Indiana Collection
Indiana State Museum; through Sept. 15, 2013
Fine arts curator Rachel Berenson Perry closes out her illustrious 26-year career with the Indiana State Museum system with this finely tuned retrospective of artwork from 1870 to the present. Displayed chronologically, 45 paintings and sculptures from the permanent collection of the Indiana State Museum both reflect and comment upon Indiana’s intimate and far-ranging story.
There's a mix between of names both familiar and not, prompting a viewer to ponder why some artists gain public attention and others, equally talented, are not “household names.” It takes more than one visit to absorb how and why a particular person, place or event caught the attention of an artist and why this interpretation continues to have an impact on how we “see” or feel about ourselves as Hoosiers.
The exhibit particularly highlights, according to promotional materials, “recently acquired artwork by current artists who carry on lifelong experimentation with their chosen art-making techniques and materials.” Paul Siebenthal’s “Object 21-45448” earns particular scrutiny for its content, approach and mounting. It is a perfect example of how lighting brings us into the subtext and heightens a visual experience. Glenn Cooper Henshaw’s “Untitled Portrait” shows us timeless dignity. Floyd D. Hopper’s 1934 “Blue Monday” could be today’s realistic economic situation for many of us. James Tracy’s “West End Café on 4th Street” invites us in. Ellie Siskind’s “The Way the Wind Blows” reminds us growing up is universally challenging. Each work commands attention.