New & Upcoming

We've got a couple cool things going on this week at the UIMA.

First, we decided to make good use of the fancy video screen leftover we put up for Winona Ryder in the Carver Gallery during VOOM by showing off some of the fun videos we have in our permanent collection. In what we're unofficially calling our Summer Video Series, we're featuring some early video classics from American artist William Wegman (we had an exhibition of his Weimaraner portraits dressed in couture a few years back) and Swiss artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss, as well as some later works by UI emeritus faculty member Hans Breder and Roman Singer, another Swiss artist. Here's the lineup for the series:

-- May 21-June 22: selected 1970s shorts by William Wegman (See still at right.)
-- June 25-July 27: Peter Fischli and David Weiss's The Way Things Go
-- July 30-Sept. 7: UI emeritus faculty Hans Breder's Fontana Song for Scrim
-- Sept. 10-Oct. 5: 19 short films by Swiss artist Roman Singer

You really don't want to miss these videos. Most haven't been shown for quite a while, in large part because we rarely have the space in the galleries or our exhibition schedule. And most of them are hilarious. Wegman's videos use props, his own body, and his dogs as comic material -- in one short, Wegman spits out milk in a trail and his Weimaraner, Man Ray, laps it up, while another Wegman makes his belly "sing"; Fischli and Weiss use explosions, found materials, and other substances to create a domino-effect installation that keeps you wondering what will happen next; Breder's video is a bit more serious, but stunningly beautiful; and we wrap things up with Singer's "event sculptures," which present funny twists on traditional science.

For more information on the exhibition, check our website or read the full press release. And keep checking back here for more detailed previews/reviews of each video as the series progresses.
We're also opening an exhibition of African Ceramics this week on Saturday, May 31. The show will be going up in the Ceramics II gallery, a revamped space connected to the current Ceramics Gallery on the southeast corner of the building. (The space had been closed for about two years; previously, it housed other African works from the collection.) The show is culled largely from a promised gift of nearly 100 African works from an anonymous collector. If you like African art, you know the museum has an outstanding collection, much of which came to us from Maxwell and Elizabeth Stanley of Muscatine, IA. This gift helps to expand the current collection, adding a broad sampling of African Ceramics from across the continent, creating wonderful research opportunities. The crew has been doing a lot of work getting the space prepped for the opening -- installing shelves, tiling, etc. -- and the show is going to look beautiful.

Check our website for more information and the press release on African Ceramics; we'll post a review here on the blog after the show opens.

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