New art poised for visitors

From staff reportsApril 18, 2010 

  • Blue Panel, 1980

    Deceptively simple, this abstract oil on canvas is all about the color, which takes on a presence of its own.

    El Anatsui, Ghanaian, active in Nigeria

    Lines That Link Humanity, 2008

    Commissioned by the museum, it is made from bottle caps and remnants of liquor packaging. It evokes a complex history of the trade in alcoholic beverages in Africa.

    Roxy Paine, American

    Askew, 2009

    Part of a series of treelike forms Paine calls "dendroids," this stainless steel work is installed outside the museum building and is visible from several vantage points inside as well.

    Jennifer Steinkamp, American

    Mike Kelley, 2007-2008

    This video installation depicts a tree as it changes through the seasons, with an anthropomorphic quality to it; a counterpoint to Askew outside the building.

    Patrick Dougherty, American

    Out of the Box, 2009

    Made of red maple sapling branches and boughs from the area, this tangled piece spans an entire wall near the entrance, and continues the conversation about nature and art mixing both inside and out.

    Ursula von Rydingsvard, American, born Germany

    Ogromna, 2009

    Her works are roughly hewn cedar and graphite blocks, cut and stacked to evoke bowls, vases, spoons or shovels. This 19-foot-tall piece is one of the first artworks visitors see on the grounds as they drive in.

    The Rodin gift

    29 sculptures from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation

    Twenty-nine Auguste Rodin castings are inside and outside in a special garden. An installation explaining the lost-wax casting process will go on view in the old building this fall.

    Attributed to Willem Hendrik Rosier, Dutch

    Pair of Torah Finials, circa 1765

    Originally made for Amsterdam's Grote Synagoge, this pair of silver and brass finials was acquired in 2006. NCMA has one of only two permanent displays of Jewish art in an American art museum.

    Egyptian False Door, probably from Saqqara

    Old Kingdom, Dynasty VI, reign of Pepy I or Merenre, circa 2321-2278 B.C.

    False doors for private ancient Egyptian tombs, such as this limestone piece, were passageways for the soul. This one belonged to a nobleman.

    Jaume Plensa, Spanish

    Doors of Jerusalem I, II, & III, 2006

    The trio of larger-than-life figures cast in translucent resin and lit from within face downward from three walls in the lobby, with excerpts from the "Song of Solomon" covering them.

The gift of 30 sculptures (29 Rodins and one Camille Claudel) plus three loaned Rodins highlight the N.C. Museum of Art's new look. But a lot of other new art, including some commissioned pieces never seen before, await visitors to the museum and surrounding grounds.

The museum's first Picasso, a work created by Jaume Plensa and new pieces by Roxy Paine and Ursula von Rydingsvard are among the highlights. In all, about 50 new and recent acquisitions will be on view in and around the new galleries.

Here's a look at some artists and their work, which provides a sense of the international and nature-based aesthetic of the new museum.

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