University Of Richmond Museums opens
Minna Citron: The Uncharted Course From Realism to Abstraction
On view October 7 through December 7, 2014, in the Joel and Lila Harnett Museum of Art and Print Study Center, is the exhibition Minna Citron: The Uncharted Course From Realism to Abstraction. American artist and printmaker Minna Citron (1896-1991) was at the forefront of major artistic movements of the 20th-century, experimenting with cutting-edge styles and techniques with an often feminist perspective. This retrospective exhibition includes approximately 50 paintings, prints, drawings, and mixed media constructions created during the course of Citron’s 60-year career.
Born in 1896 in Newark, New Jersey, and raised in Brooklyn, Citron attended the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences and the New York School of Applied Design for Women. Citron’s early work in the 1930s, while studying at the Art Students League, was often satirical critiques of contemporary society in New York’s social scene. During that period, she was part of the group known as the Fourteenth Street School. As a lifelong, self-proclaimed feminist, she challenged the roles of women in the 1930s, a period in which representations of women in art had become more conservative than the images of sexually liberated modern women of the previous decade. She began associating with urban realist painters and used her paintings and prints to document the occurrence of mill strikes, crime, and child workers during the Depression.
In the 1940s, Citron moved away from realism and became part of the first generation of New York Abstract Expressionists. Her longstanding interest in psychoanalysis and Freudian theory burgeoned during this time, as she worked in Stanley William Hayter’s graphic workshop “Atelier 17” alongside well-known artists including Marc Chagall, Jackson Pollock, and Mark Rothko. As her career progressed, Citron continued to draw on psychoanalysis, exploring the use of accident, chance, and the unconscious as sources of inspiration in her abstract art. In the 1960s and 1970s she turned to collages and mixed-media constructions, and then back to painting during her last decade.
The exhibition was organized by Juniata College Museum of Art, Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, and curated by Jennifer L. Streb, Associate Professor of Art History and Curator of the Museum, and Christiane H. Citron, granddaughter and scholar of Citron. At the Harnett Museum of Art, the exhibition is made possible in part with support from the Louis S. Booth Arts Fund. An exhibition catalogue, published by Juniata College Museum of Art, is available.
Monday, October 6, 2014, 6 to 8 p.m.
6 p.m., Lecture, Camp Concert Hall, Modlin Center for the Arts
Minna Citron: From ‘Self Expression’ to Abstract Expressionism and Beyond
Christiane Citron, granddaughter and scholar of Minna Citron
7 to 8 p.m., Opening reception and preview of the exhibition
Harnett Museum of Art, Modlin Center for the Arts
University of Richmond Museums comprises the Joel and Lila Harnett Museum of Art, the Joel and Lila Harnett Print Study Center, and the Lora Robins Gallery of Design from Nature. Admission to all museums is free and open to the public.
For group visits and tours, please call Martha Wright at 804-289-8237, or visit museums.richmond.edu/education/tour-request.html at least two weeks prior to your visit for reservations. We can book group tours outside of our normal business hours.
Museum hours (8/20-4/27): Sunday through Friday, 1 to 5 p.m. Closed Fall Break (10/10-14), Thanksgiving Week (11/22-30), Semester Break (12/13-1/11), Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (1/19), Spring Break (3/7-15), Easter Weekend (4/4-5), and Summer Break (5/15-8/18).