Fine Art PR Publicity Announcements News and Information
Fine Art PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Excavating New Ground American Art in the 1970s at the University of Virginia Art Museum

The University of Virginia Art Museum presents Excavating New Ground: American Art in the 1970s on view through August 14, 2011.

The 1970s opened with three momentous occurrences: the announcement of the breakup of the Beatles in April, the Kent State shootings in May, and the hijacking of 5 planes by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine in September. The decade’s close was no less challenging, marked by the meltdown of Unit 2 of the Three Mile Island nuclear generating station in March, the $1.5 billion bail-out of Chrysler Corporation, and the start of the Iran hostage crisis, both in November. These tumultuous ten years also witnessed the maturity of the second wave of the women’s movement, the student movement, and the black-nationalist movement, which together irrevocably shifted cultural discourse from the homogeneous center to the heterogeneous peripheries.

Within this fluctuating social topography, artists faced the critically proclaimed end of modernism and plumbed the historic and aesthetic terrain for styles and iconography more relevant to their age. This exhibition, derived from the Museum’s collection of abstract and figurative painting and sculpture produced in the 1970s, includes works by painters Power Boothe, Jack Beal, and Larry Poons and sculptor John De Andrea. The exhibition focuses on the development of art practice on the East Coast, considering such ideas as the distinction between figure and figurative painting while highlighting the varied styles characterized as post-painterly abstraction.

The exhibition is made possible through the generous support of Arts$, The Hook, Albemarle Magazine, and Charlottesville Welcome Book, Ivy Publications LLC.

Image: Lennart Anderson, American, b. 1928 St. Mark’s Place, 1971 1976 Oil on canvas, 9313/16 x 741/8 in, 238.28 x 188.28 cm Purchased with Funds from the National Endowment for the Arts and an Anonymous Donor, 1977.25 © Lennart Anderson

The University of Virginia Art Museum is dedicated to creating an environment in which the largest possible share of its diverse constituencies, including members of the University community and the general public, can study and learn from the direct experience of works of art.

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