New York — The 2019 winter season at the Morgan Library & Museum continues to celebrate visual artists and writers whose experimental methods and innovative creative processes have transformed our understanding of drawing, illustration, writing, and photography. Over the course of January and February, the Morgan will open a series of varied exhibitions, ranging from a look at the creative enterprise of J.R.R. Tolkien, to a focused examination of unconventional practices in contemporary drawing, to the first display in the United States of the storied photography collection of the National Gallery of Canada, to a survey of celebrated early Italian Drawings from our collection.
By Any Means: Contemporary Drawings from the Morgan
January 18, 2019 through May 12, 2019
Contemporary approaches to drawing are often experimental and expansive. By absorbing and building upon the legacy of avant-garde experimentation in the first half of the twentieth century, artists from the 1950s to the present have pushed beyond the boundaries of traditional draftsmanship through their use of chance, unconventional materials, and new technologies. Emboldened by the accessibility, scale, and relative affordability of paper, and informed by the developments of Cubist, Futurist, Dada, and Surrealist predecessors, these artists have pursued drawing by any means--whether by pouring, pressing, rolling, rubbing, folding, pasting, printing, plotting, or pushing. By Any Means brings together about twenty innovative works from the Morgan’s collection, including many recent acquisitions, by artists such as John Cage, Sol LeWitt, Vera Molnar, Robert Rauschenberg, Betye Saar, Gavin Turk, and Jack Whitten.
By Any Means: Contemporary Drawings from the Morgan is made possible with the support of Louisa Stude Sarofim and Nancy Schwartz.
Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth
January 25 through May 12, 2019
“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” With these words the Oxford professor J.R.R. Tolkien ignited a fervid spark in generations of readers. From the children’s classic The Hobbit to the epic The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien’s adventurous tales of hobbits and elves, dwarves and wizards have introduced millions to the rich history of Middle-earth. Going beyond literature, Tolkien’s Middle-earth is a world complete with its own languages and histories. Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth celebrates the man and his creation. The exhibition will be the most extensive public display of original Tolkien material for several generations. Drawn from the collections of the Tolkien Archive at the Bodleian Library (Oxford), Marquette University Libraries (Milwaukee), the Morgan, and private lenders, the exhibition will include family photographs and memorabilia, Tolkien’s original illustrations, maps, draft manuscripts, and designs related to The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.
Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth is organized by the Morgan Library & Museum in collaboration with the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, and with the support of The Tolkien Estate, The Tolkien Trust, and members of the Tolkien family.
The exhibition is made possible through the generosity of Fay and Geoffrey Elliott.
®TOLKIEN is a registered trademark of the Tolkien Estate Limited.
Invention and Design: Early Italian Drawings at the Morgan
February 15 through May 19, 2019
The Morgan’s impressive collection of Italian Drawings documents the development of Renaissance drawing practice from its beginnings in the fourteenth century and over the following two centuries. From the influence of medieval manuscript and painting workshops to the new practice of sketching, artists gradually moved away from imitation of standard models and to the invention of novel ways of thinking on the page and representing traditional subjects. As artists came to be recognized more as intellectuals than as craftsmen, a new class of collectors and connoisseurs created a market for autonomous drawings of classical subjects and other compositions. Portrait drawing emerged as an independent genre during this period, while artists invented new ways approaches to landscape drawing. Invention and Design explores these developments and celebrates more than a century of innovation in drawing. This exhibition will be the first to focus on this material, featuring works by artists such as Mantegna, Filippo Lippi, Filippino Lippi, Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Fra Bartolomeo, and Andrea del Sarto.
Invention and Design: Early Italian Drawings from the Morganis made possible with generous support from the Scholz Family Charitable Trust, the Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw Charitable Trust, the Alex Gordon Fund for Exhibitions, and the Andrew W. Mellon Research and Publications Fund.
The Extended Moment: Photographs from the National Gallery of Canada
February 15 through May 26, 2019
Through a selection of around seventy works, The Extended Moment reveals the historical, technological, and aesthetic richness of the photography holdings of the National Gallery of Canada, a major collection little known in this country. In the exhibition’s presentation at the Morgan, works of far-flung origins appear side-by-side in a sequence that highlights recurring trends and tensions in the history of the medium. Surprising parallels and hidden histories link images drawn from the worlds of art, fashion, journalism, propaganda, scientific research, social activism, and beyond. Thus on one hand, the “moment” in each photograph is “extended” into collaboration with its immediate neighbors; on the other, two centuries of history emerge as an “extended moment” in which the unifying element is photography in its many manifestations. Artists include Edward Burtynsky, Julia Margaret Cameron, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Lynne Cohen, John Herschel, Richard Learoyd, Lisette Model, Edward Steichen, and Josef Sudek.
The Extended Moment: Photographs from the National Gallery of Canada is made possible through the generosity of the Thompson Family Foundation, Inc.
Organized by the Canadian Photography Institute of the National Gallery of Canada in collaboration with the Morgan Library & Museum, New York.
Image: Giovanni Agostino da Lodi (active ca. 1467 - ca. 1524), Head of a Youth Facing Left, 15th century, red chalk on paper. The Morgan Library & Museum, 1973.35:2