DIA eNews
In This Issue
Director's Letter
Exhibitions
New on View
DFT
Pedal Power
Special Events

Director's Letter

Graham W.J. Beale, Director 

Well, we did it. The DIA now has, for the first time in a long time, a stable form of funding for the foreseeable future, and I want to thank all of you who helped us to secure such a convincing margin in Oakland and Wayne Counties and achieve the necessary majority in Macomb County. As you must have read in the newspapers, we now have a very different long-term challenge: to build an endowment adequate for our basic operating needs that will obviate the need for ongoing tax support.

It was wonderful to see, in the days immediately following the election, the large number of visitors who came to see what their vote had given them. The DIA was packed and, on one evening in particular, the museum shop had a hard time closing its doors. Not a bad problem to have. We have already started the planning process for an additional open day during the week, extended hours for school groups, and increased community outreach and other programming.

We are also looking at how to rebuild crucial aspects of the DIA's operations that, of necessity, have been slighted in the three years since the most recent cuts. When we made all those painful decisions in early 2009, we did so in such a way as to maintain the "New DIA," which meant supporting all the functions that pertained to the visitor experience. That, in turn, meant cutting areas traditionally maintained in difficult times. To give one example, when I arrived here in 1999, there were twenty-three curators. Since 2009, that number has been thirteen. Obviously, with one individual responsible for, say, galleries covering 800 years of European painting, there is a lot of day-to-day activity and less time for research in the curator's area of expertise. This leads to art files becoming out of date, which means we are hesitant to put information on our website where it would be accessible to online visitors or, now that we have WiFi, in the galleries--even as the individual looks at the art itself. Because, in the end, it is all about enhancing the visitor experience and enabling, as our mission statement says, personal connections with art. As one of my curatorial colleagues said recently, "If the results of your research don't reach the public, you may as well not do it."

Thank You 

Thanks to the successful millage initiative, we now have the opportunity to carefully create an institution that is truly designed for the twenty-first century and builds on the groundbreaking work that earned us the Wall Street Journal's description of "this country's most visitor-friendly art museum." Speaking personally, I am thrilled to be able to turn my full attention (and have my colleagues do the same!) to running an art museum and close by thanking, again, all of you who contributed to the millage campaign and thereby helped secure the DIA's future.

Graham Beal Signature
Graham W. J. Beal

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The Plumed Hat

Exhibitions

picassomatissePicasso and Matisse
The DIA's Prints and Drawings

Through January 6, 2013
Schwartz Galleries of Prints and Drawings

Profile of a Woman 

Pablo Picasso, Spanish; Profile of a Woman, ca. 1903; black crayon, watercolor or wash, white highlights. Bequest of John S. Newberry. © 2012 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

 

This exhibition is as much about the small number of collectors who were catalysts in shaping the museum's collection as it is about the artists' work. Of the 110 prints and drawings by Picasso and Matisse on view, John S. Newberry Jr.'s name appears on the credit line as the donor for forty-seven of them.

Newberry (1910-64) grew up in the Detroit metro area. His father was one of the fifty prominent residents who underwrote the Art Loan project of 1883, which brought an exhibition of European and American art to the city and spurred the foundation of the Detroit Museum of Art two years later. Upon graduation from Harvard University and the Courtauld Institute of Art in London, the younger Newberry took a volunteer curatorial position in the DIA's then Department of Graphic Arts, now the Department of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs. After serving in War II, he returned to the museum as the curator of the department, a position he held until 1957. His knowledge and taste were not the only resources he brought to the job, Newberry continued to be an active collector and donor to his own department.

In 1947, Newberry acknowledged that there was almost nothing by Matisse in the DIA collection other than large 1916 oil painting The Window, which the museum purchased in 1922, and three prints (one of which, Haitian Woman, a 1945 lithograph, was a gift from him). As soon as Matisse's acclaimed twenty-print portfolio and book project Jazz was published, Newberry bought it and gave it to the DIA. In 1952, he bought out an entire Parisian gallery show of thirty "Recent Prints" by Matisse and also gave them to the museum. In one fell swoop, the DIA suddenly had a hefty representation of linoleum cuts, etchings, and lithographs. Twenty of those prints are on view in the exhibition.

Newberry's giving was not restricted to Matisse. He also gave the museum two of Picasso's large lithographs from the late 1940s and early 50s--Armchair Woman No. 1 and Composition with Vase of Flowers--a short time after they were created. Both are in the exhibition. Newberry's last additions to the DIA collection came as a part of his bequest. Among a total of 195 objects were Matisse's 1919 pencil drawing The Plumed Hat and the small 1903 Picasso black crayon drawing Profile of a Woman. Both are masterworks that characterizethe artists at their best at the time the drawings were created.

This exhibition has been organized by the Detroit Institute of Arts. Support has been provided by Comerica Bank. Additional support has been provided by the City of Detroit.

Comerica Bank

Above: Henri Matisse, French; Plumed Hat, 1919; graphite pencil. Bequest of John S. Newberry. © 2012 Succession H. Matisse/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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onviewNEW ON VIEW

Self Portrait (Fright Wig) 

Andy Warhol, American; Self-Portrait, 1986. Collection of The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh. © 2012 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

 

Although Andy Warhol's face has been ubiquitous in the minds of tens of millions of people for decades, his painted self-portraits are relatively few in number. The pair of Self-Portraits from 1967 in the DIA collection are currently on the road as part of the exhibition Regarding Warhol: Sixty Artists, Fifty Years, which opens later this month at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. In the interim, the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, the second venue for the exhibition, has lent the DIA Warhol's Self-Portrait (Fright Wig), painted in 1986.

The Pittsburgh Self-Portrait comes from a series of eight works dating very near the end of Warhol's life, presenting the artist as spectral: his neon-blue head, shock of hair, and paint splatter appear as a disembodied, free-floating mask or skull. Made at a time when many of his friends were dying of AIDS, this canvas was considered a harbinger of death or memento mori. As one friend and studio assistant commented, it is "an unblinking, unsentimental view of a hurriedly approaching mortality."

The 1986 Warhol self-portrait will be on view through April 2013. Look for the DIA's 1967 double-portrait as the wrap-around cover for the exhibition catalogue.

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DFTDetroit Film Theatre


 

Rialto Pictures

 

The fall 2012 Detroit Film Theatre season opens the weekend of September 14 with the area premiere of a stunningly restored version of director Jean Renoir's 1937 antiwar masterpiece, Grand Illusion. Jean Gabin and Pierre Fresnay are French World War I POWs in a camp run by an aristocratic German officer, played by Erich von Stroheim. The first foreign film to be nominated for the Academy Award Best Picture Oscar®, Grand Illusion has been restored to its original in honor of its seventy-fifth anniversary.

The Bank Dick

Two 2011 Cannes Film Festival winners are also on the schedule: Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, the Grand Prize winner from Turkey, and the Russian Elena, winner of the festival's Special Jury Prize. In the Turkish film, a police commissioner, a prosecutor, a doctor, a murder suspect, and others drive through the Anatolian countryside searching for the burial site of a murdered man. Elena, a thriller highlighted by an evocative, sinuous, original musical score by Philip Glass, is a subtly stylish exploration of crime, punishment, and human nature.

The month ends with parts one and two of film historian Mark Cousins's fifteen-hour love letter to the movies, The Story of Film: An Odyssey, presented at the DFT over seven Saturday afternoons. The first two segments explore the invention of motion pictures at the end of the nineteenth century, with stories of the first movie stars, the first use of close-ups, and early special effects, before moving on to how the myth of Hollywood developed.

For more information on these films and the rest of the fall schedule, click here.

The DFT is presented by Buddy's Pizza.

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biketourPedal Power

Fash Bash 2012 

Grab your bicycle and join a guided tour of the eleven Inside|Out reproductions of DIA masterworks installed around Detroit, on Sunday, September 16. The thirteen-mile route begins and ends at the DIA and includes stops in Midtown, Corktown, Downtown, Eastern Market, and the riverfront. Musical and poetic moments are planned along the way. Inside|Out, now in its third year, brings reproductions from the museum's permanent collection into area communities.

The ride begins at 9 a.m. (sign in starts at 8:30 a.m.) at the DIA's John R entrance and ends there at approximately noon. Helmets are mandatory. The bicycle tour is free, but advanced registration is required. At the end of the tour, riders are invited to see the original works of art in the museum galleries. Participants receive discounted museum admission. As always, members and residents of Macomb, Oakland, and Wayne Counties get in free.

Last year this guided tour was extremely popular, so early registration is recommended.

 

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specialeventsSpecial Events

Poet Laureate at the DIA

Fash Bash 2012 

Photo: Matt Valentine/ Blue Flower Arts

 

Detroit-born poet Philip Levine (left), winner of the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry and the 2011-12 U.S. Poet Laureate, reads from his distinctly urban work on Thursday, Sept. 27, at 7 p.m.. Set in postwar Detroit, his poems are powerful evocations of the city at the point when its industrial might began to unravel and social divisions accelerated. Tickets are $15 ($12 for members, seniors and students), available at the box office, 313.4005, or online.

 

Summer of '62: 50th Anniversary Celebration of Friends of African and African American Art

There are only a few days left to buy tickets for a groovy evening celebrating fifty years of the Friends of African and African American Art at the DIA on Saturday, Sept. 15. The deadline for purchasing tickets is September 7. Call the box office at 313.833.4005 or purchase online.

Discounted Renaissance Festival Tickets

DIA members receive $5 off adult admission to the Michigan Renaissance Festival, open weekends through September 30 in Holly. Just show your DIA member card at the festival box office to receive your discount. Cannot be combined with other offers. For more information on the Michigan Renaissance Festival, visit www.michrenfest.com.

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Detroit Institute of Arts
5200 Woodward Avenue
Detroit, Michigan 48202
www.dia.org
313.833.7900

Comments or questions about the newsletter? Please contact us: comments@dia.org 

ADMISSION
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The museum is free for members and residents of Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb Counties
Contact the Membership HelpLine at
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HOURS
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PARKING
Valet parking is available at the Farnsworth entrance on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, during regular museum hours. The price per car is $10.

Lighted, secure self-parking is available in the Cultural Center parking lot, between John R and Brush, behind the museum.

Ford Free Second Sundays are generously supported by the Ford Motor Company Fund. Next Ford Free Sunday, September 9.

CaféDIA
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