The Joslyn Art Museum was built in Omaha originally in 1931. It was funded by Sarah Joslyn in honor of her husband. The museum works to foster love and appreciation for the arts featuring artwork from the past in its permanent collection and contemporary work in its temporary exhibitions. The current exhibition is "30 Americans". It is an exhibition from the Rubell Family Collection. The show is on display from February 2 to May 5 of 2019. The museum hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10am- 4pm , Thursday from 10am-8pm and Sunday from 10am- 4pm. The museum is free of entry and the special exhibition does have a small cost.
The exhibition "30 Americans" is from the Rubell Family Collection that is Miami based. It is a traveling show that has graced Omaha with its presence. This show is phenomenal for its examination of social justice and political issues in the United States particularly that of race and sexuality as examined in the work. It examines discrimination and oppression through a lens of the 1970's to the current climate in the country and how privilege and power has allowed these issues to continue. The show features a mixture of mediums ranging from instillation, painting, sculpture, mixed media, and video.
The intentions and subject matter of the pieces is strong and at times may make the viewer uncomfortable but as mentioned by many of the artists, is necessary to initiate conversation about the status of these issues today. The subject matter ranges from discussion of lack of students of color in schools and historical paintings to stereotypes of race. Other pieces such as one from artist Wangechi Mutu showcase the difficult path to achieving citizenship and Nick Cave who created suits of found materials to hide bodies and provide unbiased interactions. The meaning of Cave's piece is to make the viewer consider that they may have personal bias' in their own interactions and initiate work to change this.
"30 Americans" is an extraordinary exhibit and one of the first showcases at Joslyn to survey contemporary work from all African American Artists. It is worth the visit and will leave one with profound feelings and concerns about the status of race and oppression in America currently in comparison with the past. If you get the chance, please stop by to experience and consider the issues these artists have faced and express in their work.
The show features the artists: Nina Abney, John Bankston, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Mark Bradford, Nick Cave, Robert Colescott, Noah Davis, Leonardo Drew, Renee Green, David Hammons, Barkley Hendricks, Rashid Johnson, Glenn Ligon, Kale Linzy, Kerry James Marshall, Rodney McMillian, Wangechi Mutu , Pope.L , Rozeal , Gary Simmons , Xaviera Simmons, Lorna Simpson , Shinique Smith , Henry Taylor , Hank Willis Thomas, Mickalene Thomas, Kara Walker , Carrie Mae Weems , Kehinde Wiley and Purvis Young.
For more information on "30 Americans", visit https://www.joslyn.org/collections-and-exhibitions/temporary-exhibitions/details.aspx?ID=1498. For more information about the Joslyn Art Museum, visit https://www.joslyn.org.
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