The Speed Art Museum brings more groundbreaking programming to the Louisville community in December with a new exhibition and another of its popular After Hours At The Speed events.
Thoroughly Modern: Women in 20th Century Art and Design opens December 16 and runs through July 1, 2018. Thoroughly Modern is co-curated by Erika Holmquist-Wall, the Speed Art Museum’s Chief Curator, Mary & Barry Bingham Sr., Curator of Painting & Sculpture; and Scott Erbes, Curator of Decorative Arts and Design.
Drawn from the Speed’s permanent collection and local private collections, the exhibition explores the advent of modernism and celebrates the women whose work influenced both the visual arts and new ways of living. The exhibition presents the work of several women artists and designers who were active in the early and mid-twentieth century (1900-60). Thoroughly Modern includes a wide range of artwork, including paintings, works on paper, decorative arts and applied design. Featured artists include Blanche Lazzell, Susie Cooper, Eva Zeisel, Jane Peterson, Theresa Bernstein, and Marguerite Zorach.
“Thoroughly Modern was conceived as a supplementary exhibition to the Women Artists in the Age of Impressionism exhibition that will be opening in February 2018,” explained Erika Holmquist-Wall, the Speed Museum’s Chief Curator. “It picks up where the Impressionist show ends, which is around 1900. I love that we will be are showcasing women artists from the 19th century, the 20th century, and in our contemporary galleries, the 21st century. I think it’s going to be revelatory and encouraging,” she said.
According to Holmquist-Wall, the women artists and designers featured in Thoroughly Modern were committed to promoting the ideas and ideals of Moderinsm in their artwork, both in Europe and America. Many of them also launched their careers in the shadow of artist spouses or partners. When some of these women stopped making art due to the pressure of raising families, their important artistic contributions began to be overlooked as the decades passed Still others continued to make important strides in the male-dominated areas of commercial design and fine art.
“The exhibition aims to showcase many of these design pioneers and groundbreaking artists through their artwork, personal photographs and the stories of their lives,” said Holmquist-Wall.
Holmquist-Wall said her hope is that visitors leave the exhibition with a better understanding for just how innovative and original these artists were, given the shifting cultural norms in the early 20th century.
After Hours At The Speed is December 15
Beginning in October of 2017, the Speed Art Museum began offering special evening hours and an eclectic mix of music, art, performances, food and drink.
According to Evan McMahon, the Speed Museum’s Special Event Manager, After Hours At The Speed was created to cater to the community’s desire to have extended museum hours beyond the museum’s traditional 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. hours. The events have exceeded all expectations. “We wanted to make it a party for the community, and we’ve been blown away by the attendance and reception for these events,” he said. The November After Hours At The Speed welcomed more than 1,300 visitors.
According to McMahon, the key has been offering a great diversity of programming that offers something for every age and artistic taste – with live music in a variety of genres, performance art, poetry, drinks and food – and of course, visual arts in the galleries.
In December, the Speed is open even later than its normal 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with a special Late Night After Hours from 5 p.m. to midnight, featuring deejay Ankur Gopal, founder and CEO of Interapt, a local software app company.
“We’ll be hitting it hard with the live music, and the icing on the cake will be the video projections by Ryan Daly with his company Cinemanonymous. He’s a phenomenal artist and he’ll have super interesting projections for the event as a backdrop for the bands,” said McMahon.
Some of the special features for December’s After Hours At The Speed include:
Video projections by Ryan Daly
Teen Slam: The Speed’s Teen Advisory Council showcase of performances by high school musicians, writers, and artists
Secrets and Stories Tours – The Speed Art Museum staff present an interactive tour that takes visitors behind the scenes to reveal secrets and stories behind artworks in the Speed’s collection.
McMahon said the After Hours events are the perfect way for the Speed Art Museum to engage with the community. “We are enacting this vision that we had since we re-opened the museum: a hub of creativity for visual art, music, dance, poetry and more that you wouldn’t find anywhere else under one roof. The Speed is welcoming to all. We invite everyone in to experience the arts at its best and most enticing. With these events, we are absolutely breaking the mold.”
That also includes hosting killer holiday parties. “As we’re in the middle of the holiday party season, we’re inviting local companies and community partners to let us “host” their holiday parties at the Speed,” said McMahon. “For just $20 per person, we’ll do all the work, so their employees, collaborators, investors, and friends can enjoy the live music, food, drinks and art.” (To reserve tickets for your group, contact 502.634.2971 or [email protected].)
For more information about After Hours At The Speed, visit www.speedmuseum.org.