In the fall of 2012, I met Polish artist Paulina Olowska. She was visiting to plan her 2013 Carnegie International installation for the Carnegie Café—we talked about the beginnings of the Dada movement at the Cabaret Voltaire and her plans to transform the museum café into a cabaret atmosphere. When Olowska later invited me to work on the performance piece for her project (and exhibit a collection of my puppets), I began thinking about creating a show about the ideals of early Dada artists.
It’s difficult to think about the trauma experienced by European artists living during World War I. What were artists to do at a time when humanity was pushed to the edge, when the reality of war and suffering permeated everyday life? The Cabaret Voltaire was an outlet for artists and intellectuals to express their disgust, their needs, and their aim to redefine art. Today, wars are often managed by drones controlled from locations far from the battlefield. At home we watch football, go to the movies, and get into arguments at the supermarket as wars are being waged halfway around the world. In developing this new puppet show, I thought about the iconic figure Hugo Ball, dressed in a shiny cone-shaped bishop’s outfit. I wondered what Ball, his wife Emmy Hennings, and other Zurich Dadaists of 1916 would think about the world today.
Come see our new puppet show, Flight Out of Time, this Thursday at Culture Club! Flight Out of Time (after Ball’s diaries) recreates the scene of The Cabaret Voltaire. A fantastical ending suggests a prophetic element in Ball’s prose. I developed the show with fellow artist and puppeteer Michael Cuccaro, and it includes an adaptation of Tristan Tzara’s Dada Manifesto as well as a reenactment of Hugo Ball’s sound poetry. You can even make your own puppet for the stage! Hope to see you there.
Enjoy a first look at this year’s Carnegie Trees at tonight’s preview party!
A holiday tradition since 1961, Carnegie Trees is an annual event featuring six 20-foot Colorado spruce trees alongside our renowned Neapolitan presepio in the Hall of Architecture. This holiday season, each tree will be adorned with ornaments that celebrate the art of play—a prevalent theme in the 2013 Carnegie International.
This year’s designers include Mernie Berger and Lowrie Ebbert; Carole Kamin; Nancy Lewis with Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh; Cynthia Cooley and Suzanne McLaughlin; Laura Beattie with Frick Art & Historical Center; and the Society for Contemporary Craft.
Tickets can be purchased here.
Carnegie Museum of Art’s annual Evening for Educators on November 12 is a chance for the museum to engage and celebrate with classroom teachers and educators from around Pittsburgh. This is one of my favorite times of year, it’s such a great opportunity to mingle and talk shop!
Each year I work with my team to plan a range of opportunities for educators to engage with the permanent collection and special exhibitions, as well as network, experiment with art materials, and relax.
Exploring the 2013 Carnegie International during one of our professional development workshops for teachers
This year the focus is on the 2013 Carnegie International. This exhibition is exciting and unique to Pittsburgh, and it’s fun to remind everyone that even New Yorkers “[envy] the people of the Steel City, who get to have it at their doorstep for the next five months.” International co-curator Daniel Baumann will kick off the event, and we are providing dinner and drinks—sometimes the best ideas for projects and collaboration happen over food and wine.
We’ll also be offering interactive tours of the International exhibition, an opportunity for everyone to encounter contemporary art by 35 artists from 19 countries. This exhibition is full of powerful, challenging, and beautiful ideas that we’re sure will resonate with teachers; it’s art that can change the way we think about our world.
At 6:30 p.m., everyone will head to the Music Hall to hear Braddock-based artist collaborative Transformazium discuss their views on creative engagement and the Art Lending Collection developed for the International. These three women have brought the museum and art out into their community—and their community into the museum. We hope that this can inspire the same kinds of exchanges between schools and our museum.
We hope see many of you there! Register by calling 412.622.3288 or online.
On Friday, September 20 we gathered at Artists Image Resource (AIR) on the North Side to celebrate the impending arrival of the 2013 Carnegie International. It’s the 56th installment of the beloved contemporary art exhibition, and curators Dan, Daniel, and Tina were joined by artists of AIR’s Resident Artist’s Projects and members of literary and comic artist collective Cyberpunk Apocalypse. Throughout the night appetites were satisfied with delicious vittles from Franktuary, Dozen Bake Shop, and Brassero Grill, while DJ Mizerak of Standard Issue Citizen kept booties shakin’.
And last Friday night we joined Gallery Crawl revelers for a fun, game filled night at There Ultra Lounge in the Cultural District. With only 7 days until the official opening of the 2013 Carnegie International, we took to the streets to challenge brave folks with LINGO—a special game of seek-and-find where participants searched for a set of terms in the art labels at the various galleries. Those who took the challenge walked away with sweet International swag.
Thanks to everyone who came out to celebrate with us! You can keep up to date with the latest event info for the International on the exhibition website.
Tezuka Architects design with daily life in mind. In an era when many architects, especially those termed “starchitects,” seem interested in strange form for strange form’s sake, Takaharu and Yui Tezuka are responsible for buildings that provide optimal space for activity with strategic use of material. Their work reinforces progressive ideas of health, community and social gathering.
This year the 2013 Carnegie International includes architecture for the first time. As part of The Playground Project, a key component of the International, Tezuka Architects have designed an installation titled run, run, run in Carnegie Museum of Art’s Heinz Architectural Center. Through cinematic images and sound, the installation evokes the architects’ Fuji Kindergarten in suburban Tokyo. The kindergarten consists of an oval roof deck accessible from an open court used by children year-round. The children run energetically about this deck yet also enjoy moments of quieter play, frequently in the shade of mature zelkova trees.
Sketch for installation of run, run, run; Courtesy of Tezuka Architects
In addition to Fuji Kindergarten, the Tezukas have recently built kindergartens in Miyagi Prefecture, for communities devastated by the 2011 tsunami, and a medical facility near Kobe for children undergoing chemotherapy. Each project communicates a faith in the possibility of architecture to aid people’s lives.
Join us for an artist talk on Monday, October 7, at Carnegie Lecture Hall, where Takaharu Tezuka will describe the vividly social buildings realized by his practice. Co-sponsored by the School of Architecture at Carnegie Mellon University, the lecture is free and takes place at 6:30.