Four Portfolios of the Twentieth-Century: Archipenko, Gropper, Evans, and Doisneau

July 16-November 13
Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, FL

We bring together two lithographic and two photographic portfolios by four important artists. The portfolios by Alexander Archipenko and Robert Doisneau are European, while those of the photographer Walker Evans and artist William Gropper are decidedly American.

Archipenko’s Sixteen Lithographs, known as the Wasmuth portfolio (1921), is an outstanding early body of work. Commissioned by the noted publisher Ernst Wasmuth of Berlin, the prints were created soon after the modernist sculptor departed from the Paris art world and broke with the Cubists.

Gropper’s portfolio of color lithographs, the Watergate Suite (1973), was given to the Museum in 2010 and is being shown for the first time. Gropper was a social realist whose art came of age during the Great Depression. Here he addresses the congressional hearings on the Watergate scandal, which led to Richard Nixon’s resignation.

Doisneau’s photographs capture Paris and its environs from 1944-1972. They reveal his love for the city, as well as his abundant sense of humor and humanity. Among the 15 images is his famous Kiss of the Hôtel de Ville (1950). Doisneau’s photographs have been instrumental in creating the vision of Paris in the popular imagination.

Evans’s posthumously published portfolio contains some of his earliest photographs, including a rarely-printed image of the Brooklyn Bridge (about 1928). The 14 others include signature photographs of the South, created under the auspices of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) during the 1930s, as well as works from the late stage of his career. These diverse portfolios encourage us to explore the past century through documentary and street photography, modernist experimentation, and political imagery and commentary. They also reflect the vitality of the Museum’s collection of works on paper.

Hanging in the Balance: Ten Emerging Chinese Artists

August 12 – September 17, 2011
Selby Gallery, Ringling College of Art and Design

The internalized experience of sustained living in two cultures (China, Europe) crates a problematic identity for artists that embraces neither culture but instead seeks resolution through individual rather than cultural modes of their work. Curated by Prof. Qin Jian of Xiamen University, Fujian, China.

Opening Reception: Friday, August 12, 5 – 7 p.m.

Director’s Tour: Monday, August 15, 11:30 a.m.

Reception & Curator Talk: Thurs., Aug. 25, 5 – 7 p.m. followed by Curator talk at 7 p.m.


October 8, 2011 – January 8, 2012
Tampa Museum of Art

Tampa Museum of Art

For more than a decade, New York-based video artist Janet Biggs has explored the tense relationships between athleticism and human ambition, individualism and community, and free will and control. Her work has focused on sports and natural environments and has ranged from the claustrophobic pool with synchronized swimmers to the vast expanse of the High Arctic. Biggs’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States, Europe and Oceania. This exhibition is organized by the Tampa Museum of Art and is the first full survey of the artist’s career.


Janet Biggs, Fade to White (video still), 2010.
Courtesy Conner Contemporary.
Copyright Janet Biggs.

The Amazing American Circus Poster: The Strobridge Lithographing Company

September 17, 2011 – January 29, 2012
Ringling Museum of Art

Ringling Museum

Celebrating our fascinating circus heritage, The Amazing American Circus Poster showcases 80 brilliantly colored, boldly bombastic posters advertising the feature attractions from all corners of the globe and peerless performers of the big top. The Cincinnati-based Strobridge Lithographing Company was one of the country’s leading printers for the circuses. Their posters were unrivaled in their artistry and provide us with a detailed portrait of the American circus in its Golden Age, when it was unrivaled as the premiere entertainment institution in the country.

The Amazing American Circus Poster exhibition was organized by the Cincinnati Art Museum and The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art and has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: “Because democracy demands wisdom.”