Let the Garden Eram Flourish
January 5, 2017, through March 12, 2017
Location: Hood Downtown, 53 Main Street, Hanover, NH
This exhibition presents a suite of paintings, installations, and video from Iranian-born, Brooklyn-based Bahar Behbahani’s acclaimed Persian Gardens, an ongoing series that she began four years ago. An engineering tour de force, Persian or Iranian gardens have captured human imagination since their emergence in the sixth century BCE. These walled gardens comprise multilateral structures, connecting aqueducts, networks of water channels, and surrounding trees and vegetation that remain lush all year in the middle of the desert. Behbahani explores the intersection of politics and poetics that defines the gardens as contested spaces—objects of beauty that have attracted people from different walks of life throughout the ages, from the Persian rulers who created them to evoke their transcendence and political power to the diplomats, common folk, scholars, and soldiers who have sought out their orientalist enchantment.
Haunted by the spirits of fierce power play, the gardens are marked by tragedy, love, betrayal, death, and redemption, and are thus a metaphor for Iran’s fraught histories, past and present... read more
January 17, 2017, through March 05, 2017
Location: Strauss Gallery, Hopkins Center
Our language and accent are fundamental elements of how we express and identify who we are, where we come from, and how we relate to one another. Yet, how often do we think about trying to alter our tone, our voice, or our words? Can you think of a time when you might have benefitted from adjusting your accent?
As an artist living and working in Brooklyn, New York, Nina Katchadourian would come across signs advertising “accent elimination” as she walked the city streets. Inspired by the seemingly paradoxical notion of improving one’s accent as a means of assimilation while still attempting to sustain one’s cultural identity, Katchadourian created the multimedia work, aptly titled Accent Elimination.
In it, Katchadourian explores language and identity and questions what an accent is at its core. As she explains:
My foreign-born parents who have lived in the United States for over forty years both have distinctive but hard-to-place accents that I have never been able to imitate correctly (and have not inherited... read more
The Fractal Architectures
September 16, 2016, through December 11, 2016
Location: Hood Downtown, 53 Main Street, Hanover, NH
The inaugural exhibition at the Hood Downtown Exhibition Space will feature the work of contemporary French photographer Laetitia Soulier. She bases her images and sculptures on the idea of fractal geometry, where each area has a direct scale relationship to the other—understanding a fraction of the world she creates implies comprehension of the whole. Of course, she enjoys simultaneously breaking these rules in her images with the addition of people, whose presence defies the otherwise logical scale relations. In this way, her work mixes logic and magic seamlessly, in a manner consistent with a certain stage in childhood development.
To achieve her effects, she builds carefully handcrafted models that are stages for the single lens of a camera. For each photograph she creates an entire universe. For each series of photographs—“The Matryoshka Dolls” and “The Square Roots”— the visual themes are constant, and many of the furniture pieces are reused, but the set is remade for each individual image. Despite laboring over the models for months, she still applies post-production to her work as well, to merge the... read more
The Craft of Art
April 05, 2016, through May 01, 2016
Location: Jaffe-Friede Gallery, Hopkins Center, Open Tues.-Sat., 12:30-10:00 PM, Sun. 12:30-5:30 PM
In collaboration with the Studio Art Department and Dartmouth’s Artist-in-Residence Program, the Hood Museum of Art presents recent works by visiting Belgian artist Eric van Hove. Born in Guelma, Algeria, van Hove was raised in Yaoundé, Cameroon. In 2011, he moved to Marrakesh, Morocco, where he created his breakout V12 Laraki, an exact replica of the Mercedes-Benz engine of the same name, recently acquired by the museum. Produced in collaboration with about fifty-five local craftsmen, the sculpture showcases van Hove’s ingenuity and the brilliance of Maghreb craftsmanship. In addition to the majestic V12 Laraki, the exhibition includes an exploded V12 engine gearbox, and five smaller parts, all meticulously handcrafted using different techniques and with materials sourced from around Morocco.
Selections from the African Collection
April 26, 2014, through March 13, 2016
This exhibition explores the Hood Museum of Art's extraordinary collection of African weapons for the first time. It focuses on the aesthetic quality of the objects, and on the ways in which they reflect notions of masculinity, warriorhood, and ideal male beauty in traditional African societies. Because the weapons are in a Western museum's collection, the exhibition also considers Western notions of masculinity, as represented in the collecting practices of those Christian missionaries, colonial administrators, military officers, big game hunters, and explorers who acquired most of these weapons in the late nineteenth and first half of the twentieth centuries. Although the exhibition draws from several cultures in the five sub-regions of Africa, it is not a broad survey of African weapons. Instead, it presents exemplary highlights from the Hood's extensive collection, categorized as "offensive" and "defensive" weapons.
January 04, 2016, through March 13, 2016
The works of art in this exhibition, arranged in pairs, offer contrasting positions by artists on a variety of themes: men and women, the family, war and human suffering, landscapes and seascapes, images of others and of the self. Each pair is accompanied by a single question intended to provoke further questions about the artists’ individual approaches to their subjects: From what points of view (literal, emotional, intellectual) does the artist look at his/her subject? Is the artist’s stance celebratory? honorific? critical? a form of protest? In what ways does the artist communicate this to the beholder? Art history professors Joy Kenseth and Mary Coffey curated this exhibition in conjunction with their course Introduction to the History of Art II, a survey of art and architecture from 1500 to the present.
New Works and Conversations around African Art
January 16, 2016, through March 13, 2016
Successive African art curators at the Hood Museum of Art have assembled an extraordinary and holistic vision of the arts of Africa that encompasses both important historical milestones and the multiple cultural and social vistas of this continent. Acquired over the past two years and on view together for the first time, these thirty-one exceptional objects map the contour of modern and contemporary African art from the 1960s to the present while also shedding critical light on the diversity of African artistic practices by multiple generations of artists. The installation includes an exciting array of paintings, photographs, sculptures, drawings, ceramic, and mixed media, including works by Ibrahim El Salahi, Lamidi Fakeye, Akin Fakeye, Owusu-Ankomah, Victor Ekpuk, Chike Obeagu, Candice Breitz, Nomusa Makhubu, Julien Sinzogan, Aida Muluneh, Halida Boughriet, Mario Macilau, Eric van Hove, Khulumeleni Magwaza, and Nidhal Chamekh.
January 09, 2016, through March 13, 2016
Vermont-based artist Eric Aho’s series of Ice Cuts paintings is inspired by the hole cut in the ice in front of a Finnish sauna, an aspect of Finnish culture that Aho’s family has maintained to this day. Intended for an icy immersion following the heat of the sauna, the avanto, as it is called in Finnish, underscores and personalizes the inherent contrasts in nature. Aho began the Ice Cuts series nine years ago, making one painting a year of the dark void produced by the act of sawing into the thick ice. This exhibition is the first to concentrate on the Ice Cuts paintings he has created to date. The central abstract form in these compositions provides the structure for experimentation with paint texture, surface, and subtly nuanced color, lending these frozen scenes both an austere beauty and a particular vibrancy. This exhibition brings together the major paintings in the series to date and smaller, related works on paper to offer unique insight into the artistic process.
Works from the Hood Museum of Art’s Permanent Collection
January 04, 2016, through March 13, 2016
This exhibition features paintings by both American and Indigenous Australian artists and reveals the strength of the Hood’s contemporary holdings, including a selection of recent acquisitions with new work by Pat Steir, Colleen Randall, and Brenda Garand.
January 05, 2016, through March 13, 2016
Concinnitas is a Latin term that connotes an elegant, skillful joining of elements. It was used by Renaissance scholar, artist, and architect Leon Battista Alberti (1404–1472) to describe the beauty found in the confluence of perfect uses of number, position, and outline. The Concinnitas project was a two-year collaborative venture between Parasol Press and Daniel Rockmore, professor of mathematics and computer science at Dartmouth. In 2012, Parasol commissioned ten mathematicians, physicists, and computer scientists—including two Nobel Laureates and five Fields Medalists—to create etchings of the mathematical expression most meaningful to them. These formulae were then printed by the fine-art print shop Harlan and Weaver as aquatints, evoking the look of equations quickly and elegantly sketched in white chalk on a blackboard.