Guggenheim Presents Two Focused Exhibitions Selected from Permanent Collection


Exhibition:                Pop Objects and Icons from the Guggenheim

Dates:                      Annex Level 5
                                 September 30, 2011–February 8, 2012
                                 Annex Level 7
                                 November 19, 2011–January 11, 2012

Exhibition:                Surface, Support, Process: The 1960s Monochrome
                                  in the Guggenheim Collection

Dates:                       Annex Level 2
                                  November 19, 2011–February 8, 2012

Venue:                      Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
                                 1071 Fifth Avenue, New York

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(NEW YORK, NY – October 25, 2010) –– This fall the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum presents two focused exhibitions selected from the museum's permanent collection, one exploring Pop art and the other featuring 1960s monochrome works. The explosion of Pop art in America in the early 1960s signaled the return to representational images following the Abstract Expressionists of the preceding decades, who favored large gestural canvases and expressive colors. Other artists at this time investigated the aesthetic potential of paintings and sculpture dominated by a single color or limited to a narrow spectrum of tones. Presented simultaneously in two exhibitions installed in three galleries, the works produced from these contemporaneous yet radically different movements demonstrate the various artistic experimentations that emerged in the mid-twentieth century.

Pop Objects and Icons from the Guggenheim Collection is on view on Annex Level 5 from September 30, 2011 through January 11, 2012, with an additional gallery on Annex Level 7 opening on November 19, 2011, on view through February 8, 2012. Surface, Support, Process: The 1960s Monochrome in the Guggenheim Collection is on view from November 19, 2011, through February 8, 2012. Both exhibitions are curated by Megan Fontanella, Assistant Curator, Collections and Provenance, and Lauren Hinkson, Assistant Curator, Collections, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.

Pop Objects and Icons from the Guggenheim Collection
Pioneered in England in the late 1950s, the Pop art movement took hold in America after support from critics, including British critic Lawrence Alloway, who coined the term "Pop art" in 1958 and organized the seminal 1963 Guggenheim exhibition Six Painters and the Object. Encouraged by the economic vitality and consumerist culture of post–World War II America, artists such as Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg, James Rosenquist, and Andy Warhol explored the image world of popular culture—from which the movement’s name derives—and took inspiration from advertisements, pulp magazines, billboards, movies, television, and comic strips. The cool detachment and harsh, impersonal look of Pop art signaled a direct assault on the hallowed traditions of "high art" and the personal gesture, so strongly championed by the previous generation of Abstract Expressionists. The images, presented with––and sometimes transformed by––humor, wit, and irony, may be read as both an unabashed celebration and a scathing critique of popular culture.

Pop Objects and Icons from the Guggenheim Collection features a focused group of works by nine artists, from forerunners of the movement such as Robert Rauschenberg, to early practitioners who continued to work in this vein throughout their careers, including Lichtenstein and Rosenquist. The paintings and sculptures on view examine various artists’ engagement with Pop art and the Guggenheim's ongoing interest in the legacy of the style.

Surface, Support, Process: The 1960s Monochrome in the Guggenheim Collection
The monochrome has a rich history in twentieth-century art. Since the late 1910s, artworks that explore the aesthetic potential of a single color or narrow spectrum of tones have emerged from a diverse range of artistic practices. This survey of monochrome works from the 1960s reveals how this apparently simple formal device served for many artists as the point of departure for a complex reevaluation of painting and sculpture. From the ethereal interplay of light and space in Mary Corse's work, to the pristine "painting objects" of Ellsworth Kelly's freestanding folded sculptures, the monochrome affords a nuanced lens through which to understand the art of this decade.

This focused exhibition presents works from the permanent collection by Corse, Kelly, Tadaaki Kuwayama, Robert Mangold, Agnes Martin, and John McCracken. Also on display are two twelve-foot-square paintings from Robert Ryman's Surface Veil series (1970–72) that demonstrate the artist's sustained interrogation of the fundamental materials and processes of painting.

Education and Public Programs
For complete information about the range of public programs presented this fall, visit Exhibition tours offered in conjunction with these two exhibitions are as follows:

Curator’s Eye Tour
Pop Objects and Icons from the Guggenheim Collection
Dec 2, 2 pm
Led by Megan Fontanella, Assistant Curator, Collections and Provenance

Curator’s Eye Tour
Surface, Support, Process: The 1960s Monochrome in the Guggenheim Collection
Dec 16, 2 pm
Led by Lauren Hinkson, Assistant Curator, Collections
Jan 6, 2 pm
Led by Lauren Hinkson, Assistant Curator, Collections

About the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation
Founded in 1937, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation is dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of art, primarily of the modern and contemporary periods, through exhibitions, education programs, research initiatives, and publications. Currently the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation owns and operates the Guggenheim Museum on Fifth Avenue in New York and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection on the Grand Canal in Venice, and provides programming and management for the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao. The Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin is the result of a collaboration, begun in 1997, between the Guggenheim Foundation and Deutsche Bank. The Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, a museum of modern and contemporary art designed by Frank Gehry on Saadiyat Island, adjacent to the main island of Abu Dhabi city, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, is currently in progress. More information about the foundation can be found at

Admission: Adults $18, students/seniors (65+) $15, members and children under 12 free. Admission includes an audio tour of the exhibition.

Museum Hours: Sun–Wed, 10 am–5:45 pm; Fri, 10 am–5:45 pm; Sat, 10 am–7:45 pm; closed Thurs. On Saturdays, beginning at 5:45 pm, the museum hosts Pay What You Wish. For general information, call 212 423 3500 or visit the museum online at:

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October 25, 2011

Lauren Van Natten, Associate Director of Media and Public Relations
Samantha Weiss, Media and Public Relations Associate
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
212 423 3840

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