Exhibitions

Ongoing

Kosmic Krylon Garage

July 11, 2004–

Born in Los Angeles, Kenny Scharf rose to prominence in the New York art scene in the 1980s as part of a dynamic group of artists including Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat. He has since returned to California, but he has retained the playful Pop aesthetic for which he is internationally renowned. In the summer of 2004, Kenny Scharf: California Grown opened at the PMCA as the Museum’s first tri-level exhibition, with paintings installed and a tape of The Groovenians—Scharf’s animated show for Cartoon Network—screening on the second floor, his bronze sculptures in the third-floor Founders’ Gallery, and the transformation of the PMCA garage into the Kosmic Krylon Garage. After the end of the exhibition, the colorful murals spray-painted by Scharf over the course of a week remained on the walls of the garage and continue as a permanent installation. The Kosmic Krylon Garage is on view during regular Museum hours. 

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Upcoming

Testament of the Spirit: Paintings by Eduardo Carrillo

January 21, 2018–June 3, 2018

Eduardo Carrillo’s (1937-1997) artwork has been described as mystical, realistic, surreal, and visionary. His imagery, whether grounded in the everyday world or infused with magical realism, reflects his relationship to his native California and to his Mexican heritage, as well as to his early religious upbringing and respect for European traditions in art. An inspirational leader who actively challenged racism and injustice, Carrillo created programs and platforms that promoted greater awareness of Latin American culture, aesthetics, and social concerns, significantly advancing the recognition and appreciation of Chicano art and culture in California.

Testament of the Spirit: Paintings by Eduardo Carrillo highlights the creative efforts and social importance of Carrillo as artist, teacher, scholar, and social activist. It showcases work created for three distinct realms: the public, the private, and the museum. The artist’s murals are featured in the full-color, bilingual exhibition catalogue. Intimate watercolors and paintings describe the artist’s everyday life in self-portraits, still lifes, and images of people and places he held dear. Large-scale visionary paintings—Carrillo’s masterpieces—reveal his complex and creative mind. The exhibition also includes the bilingual video Eduardo Carrillo: A Life of Engagement by Pedro Pablo Celedón.

On view in the PMCA’s Main Gallery, Testament of the Spirit: Paintings by Eduardo Carrillo is organized by the Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA; curated by Susan Leask; and accompanied by a fully illustrated bilingual catalogue with contributions by Philip Brookman, Gilberto Cárdenas, Maureen Davidson, Michael Duncan, Timothy Drescher, Susan Leask, Amalia Mesa-Bains, Tere Romo, and Christina Waters.

Testament of the Spirit: Paintings By Eduardo Carrillo is supported by the PMCA Board of Directors, PMCA Ambassador Circle,  the California Visionary Fund, and Zach Horowitz. A generous grant from the Eastside Arts Initiative underwrites the exhibition.

 

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The Feminine Sublime

January 21, 2018–June 3, 2018

Historically, depictions of the sublime were reserved for men whose rationality and order were posed against nature, the imagination, or the female “other.” The Feminine Sublime presents a counter-narrative that upends previous ideas of the sublime in painting with a unique feminist perspective. Exhibition artists and Los Angeles-based painters Merion Estes, Yvette Gellis, Virginia Katz, Constance Mallinson, and Marie Thibeault counter traditional landscape painters and enlist challenging aesthetics, formal inventiveness, and provocative imagery to re-imagine relationships with rapidly changing urban and natural environments in more relevant and meaningful ways.

With their large-scale artworks, the artists situate the viewer within the annihilating and terrifying effects of global climate change, nuclear catastrophe, 9/11, consumerist environmental degradation, and even post-apocalyptic landscapes. Though they articulate ideas of dystopian insecurity, fragmentation, and collapse, all of the works paradoxically invoke transformation, transition, and the possibilities for painting to still promote the kind of skepticism instrumental for the renewal of human consciousness.

The artists’ alternative versions of sublimity examine the present, freeing us from the limiting views of the past. They forge a new understanding of the environment, as well as the sublime, paving the way for an inclusive future free from confining categorization.

On view in the PMCA’s South Gallery, The Feminine Sublime is organized by the Pasadena Museum of California Art, curated by Constance Mallinson, and accompanied by a brochure. The exhibition is supported by the PMCA Board of Directors, PMCA Ambassador Circle, and the California Visionary Fund. California art patrons Joseph J. Dalrymple, Alice Harris, and Jack Johnston and David Webb underwrite the exhibition. Generous grants from the Pasadena Arts & Culture Commission and the City of Pasadena Cultural Affairs Division as well as Pasadena Arts League provide invaluable support.

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Past

Hollywood in Havana: Five Decades of Cuban Posters Promoting U.S. Films

August 20, 2017–January 7, 2018

Hollywood in Havana: Five Decades of Cuban Posters Promoting U.S. Films brings together innovative Cuban posters promoting American films, made from 1960 to 2009. Produced by Instituto Cubano del Arte e Industria Cinematográficos (ICAIC), the posters were part of an initiative of the revolutionary government to develop cultural awareness and dialogue after Fidel Castro and the guerrilla forces overthrew the brutal dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista. The Cuban Revolution of 1959 altered not only politics, society, and the economy but the cultural sphere as well, greatly expanding access to and engagement with the arts, particularly cinema, for a large portion of the population. During the early years of the Revolution, poster designers had few material resources and operated in an almost artisanal manner, using the silkscreen technique. While the limited resources imposed by the embargo inspired many of the design decisions, revolutionary ideals also influenced these graphic artists. The approximately 40 posters featured in the exhibition—which promoted films such as Singin’ in the Rain, Cabaret, and Silence of the Lambs as well as a few select Cuban films, such as a documentary about Marilyn Monroe—are astonishing in their composition, stylistic diversity, and craft. Hollywood in Havana showcases how design and visual imagery in film posters, which are ubiquitous in Los Angeles, can infiltrate our lives and inform our ideas about the world.

Hollywood in Havana: Five Decades of Cuban Posters Promoting U.S. Films is co-organized by the Pasadena Museum of California Art (PMCA) in partnership with the Center for the Study of Political Graphics (CSPG), curated by CSPG Founder and Executive Director Carol A. Wells, and accompanied by a brochure. The exhibition is supported by the PMCA Board of Directors, PMCA Ambassador Circle, and the California Visionary Fund. Media sponsorship is provided by LALA

The exhibition is part of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles, taking place from September 2017 through January 2018 at more than 70 cultural institutions across Southern California. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty. The presenting sponsor is Bank of America.

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E. Charlton Fortune: The Colorful Spirit

August 20, 2017–January 7, 2018

One of California’s most trailblazing artists, E. Charlton Fortune (1885–1969) had a thriving career as a painter until the age of forty-three, when she began a pioneering new vocation in liturgical art. E. Charlton Fortune: The Colorful Spirit pairs the artist’s impressionist and modernist landscapes with her ecclesiastical paintings, sculptures, furnishings, and other designs produced for the Catholic Church.

Though her paintings are frequently labeled impressionist, Fortune’s work moved beyond the style, a fact well recognized in her own time. Rather than focusing on nature for its own sake, she emphasized humanity’s impact on the land and was best known for colorful landscapes featuring architecture and elements of modern life as well as figures, many of them female. These works were strong in color—frequently rendered in primary or complementary hues—and rugged and gestural in execution. Because of this, some reviewers and critics thought she was a man. Many also described her paintings as “masculine,” attributing their success to a perceived virility—then one of the most highly regarded qualities in art.

Starting in 1928, Fortune’s disenchantment with mass-produced ecclesiastical art led her to create designs of her own and then found the Monterey Guild, a group of skilled craftspeople who, under her direction, created original, modern artworks for churches. Fortune’s religious artworks returned the focus to the liturgy and reinforced the importance of design and handcraftsmanship within Church interiors.

E. Charlton Fortune: The Colorful Spirit illuminates this formidable artist’s contributions both to early California painting and American liturgical design through approximately eighty works.

E. Charlton Fortune: The Colorful Spirit is organized by the Pasadena Museum of California Art and curated by Scott A. Shields, Ph.D., California art scholar and Crocker Art Museum’s Associate Director and Chief Curator. A 236-page, fully illustrated catalogue featuring scholarly essays by Shields and by Julianne Burton-Carvajal, Ph.D., accompanies the exhibition. Following its debut at the PMCA, the exhibition will travel to the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento from January 28–April 22, 2018, and the Monterey Museum of Art from May 25–August 27, 2018.

The exhibition is supported by the PMCA Board of Directors, PMCA Ambassador Circle, and the California Visionary Fund. California art patrons Yvonne Boseker, Simon Chiu, Kelvin Davis, Marie and Murray Demo, John and Patricia Dilks, Jeff Dutra, William C. Georges, Stephen MacFarlane, and Thomas B. Stiles, II and Barbara Alexander underwrite the exhibition. Generous grants from the Historical Collections Council of California Art and the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation along with corporate sponsorship from Bonhams Auctioneers, Heritage Auctions, John Moran Auctioneers, Josh Hardy Galleries, and Paula and Terry Trotter, Trotter Galleries provide invaluable support.

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