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“Giants of Jazz: Art…

Jun 29 - Dec 17, 2017
This spring, art and music converge as The Historic New Orleans Collection… more

Ashe Cultural Arts…

Jun 29 - 29, 2017
Join us for the Community Dance & Drum Workshop with Danys "LaMora… more

Beyond the Canvas:…

Jun 29 - Jul 9, 2017
Spanning several generations, five Puerto Rico-based artists Zilia… more

Chicken on the Bone…

Jun 29 - Dec 6, 2017
Want to enjoy some nightlife? No trip to New Orleans is complete if you have… more

David Hansen's Garden…

Jun 29, 2017
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

David Hansen's Garden…

Jun 29 - Dec 29, 2017
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

ESSENCE Music Festival

Jun 29 - Jul 2, 2017
The ultimate party weekend is highlighted by performances from a variety of… more

FestiGals

Jun 29, 2017
FestiGals hosts New Orleans Women's Weekend Experience - a celebration of women… more

Heart of the House

Jun 29, 2017 - Jan 08, 2026
In The Voodoo Garden, All Ages. Heart of the House puts the spotlight on House… more

Lilith in Loa…

Jun 29, 2017
From Laurel Canyon to the West Village, Nashville to New Orleans, the LOA Bar… more

New Orleans Museum of…

Jun 29 - Oct 8, 2017
Jim Steg (American, 1922 -2001) was the most influential printmaker to be based… more

New Orleans Museum of…

Jun 29 - Oct 1, 2017
In celebration of beloved chef, civil rights activist, and art collector Leah… more

New Orleans Museum of…

Jun 29 - Sep 3, 2017
Pride of Place: The Making of Contemporary Art in New Orleans showcases… more

New Orleans Museum of…

Jun 29 - Oct 8, 2017
Paintings from throughout Scully's career are presented with a selection of… more

Newcomb Art Museum -…

Jun 29 - Jul 9, 2017
Spanning several generations, five Puerto Rico-based artists Zilia… more

Rivertown Theaters…

Jun 29 - 30, 2017
Join us for a delightful children's production this summer with the popular… more

Snoball Happy Hour

Jun 29 - 29, 2017
Stop by Pete's after work for a Snowball Happy Hour: a Big Easy Twist on the… more

Storyville: Madams…

Jun 29 - Dec 9, 2017
Storyville: Madams and Music revives the sights and sounds of New Orleans's… more

The Historic New…

Jun 29 - Oct 21, 2017
The Historic New Orleans Collection's Laura Simon Nelson Galleries for… more

Ashe Cultural Arts…

Jun 30 - 30, 2017
Join us for the Inaugural Maafa Side by Side Exhibition, curated by Gason… more

“Giants of Jazz: Art…

Jun 29 - Dec 17, 2017
This spring, art and music converge as The Historic New Orleans Collection… more

Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs, 1851-1939

 

Inventing the Modern World:
Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs, 1851-1939
An Exhibition Highlighting the Ingenuity and Innovation of
Works Presented at the World's Fairs
On view at NOMA from April 12 to August 4, 2013

(New Orleans, LA) - From furniture and metalwork to jewelry and glass, the New Orleans Museum of Art's upcoming exhibition, Inventing the Modern World, highlights the extraordinary artistic and industrial ingenuity of works presented at world's fairs from 1851 to 1939.  On view from April 12 to August 4, 2013, the exhibition spans the most dynamic period in craftsmanship and manufacturing history, and is organized chronologically and thematically around the concept of innovation. Through an astonishing selection of decorative and design objects, Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs, 1851-1939, showcases the technological and scientific invention, cross-cultural influence, national pride, modernism and historicism that defined the world's fairs, and which is especially resonant in New Orleans, the home of the 1884 and 1984 World's Fairs.   

The exhibition includes approximately 200 objects shown at world's fairs from the London exhibition in 1851 to the 1939 New York fair, carefully chosen through a generous research grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Many of the featured objects will be seen in the United States for the first time.

World's fairs were the most important vehicle for debuting technological and stylistic advancements on an international stage. They functioned as showcases and marketplaces for design on a global, national and individual level. Above all, they democratized design unlike any previous or concurrent forum. Due to the impermanence of the fairs, decorative arts shown at the events are sometimes the only surviving elements. Decorative arts, particularly objects crafted in ceramic, metal, glass and wood, were the physical manifestation of the progressive ideals embodied in the fairs.

"Curators looked at thousands of works from around the globe to find the objects that most compellingly represented innovation," Susan M. Taylor, Director of NOMA said. "Inventing the Modern World brings them together for the first and only time, providing visitors with an opportunity to relive the sense of discovery and energy of the world's fairs. NOMA is committed to creating an immersive experience that transports our audiences into those times and places, recalling the city's own special history with the Fairs."

The exhibition includes works made by noted international artists and manufacturers, ranging from a monumental 1850s Gothic Revival cabinet to a 1930s streamlined Art Deco glass chair, as well as masterworks of jewelry and objects in glass, silver, and porcelain by such world-renowned artisans and designers as Baccarat, Tiffany, Cartier and Sèvres. Other examples of innovation include a Thonet rocking chair that demonstrated new bentwood processes at the 1862 London International Exhibition; a vase with a complicated Black Iris glaze and electroplated mounts created by the Cincinnati-based Rookwood firm shown at the 1900 Paris Exposition Universelle; and a lighted plate glass radiator by the Saint-Gobain manufactory from the 1937 Paris fair.

Inventing the Modern World is co-curated by Catherine L. Futter, the Helen Jane and Hugh "Pat" Uhlmann Curator of Decorative Arts at the Nelson-Atkins, and Jason T. Busch, Curatorial Chair for Collections and the Alan G. and Jane A. Lehman Curator for Decorative Arts and Design at the Carnegie Museum. Following NOMA's presentation, the exhibition will travel to the Mint Museum in Charlotte, NC, in 2013. 

A full-color catalogue, written by international scholars of the 19th and 20th century decorative arts will accompany the exhibition.

Exhibition Sponsors
Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs, 1851-1939 is co-organized by the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

In conjunction with Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs, 1851-1939, NOMA is proud to present Spectacle and Spectator: Joshua Mann Pailet's Photographs of the 1984 World's Fair in New Orleans. These large-scale prints, many never before seen, have been recently produced from original negatives that Pailet made while serving as an official photographer for the U.S. pavilion for the 1984 World's Fair in New Orleans.

This exhibition is made possible with a generous grant from national presenting sponsor Wells Fargo, the Windgate Charitable Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Support for the presentation at the New Orleans Museum of Art is provided by:
Jolie and Robert Shelton, International Well Testers, Inc., Lois and Lloyd Hawkins Jr. Foundation, The Gulf Tourism and Seafood Promotional Fund, and The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau.

NOMA Admission
Wednesdays are FREE for all museum visitors. Adults, $10; Seniors (65 and up) and Students, $8; Children 7-17, $6; Children 6 and under, free.

About NOMA and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden
The New Orleans Museum of Art, founded in 1910 by Isaac Delgado, houses over 35,000 art objects encompassing 4,000 years of world art. Works from the permanent collection, along with continuously changing temporary exhibitions, are on view in the museum's 46 galleries Fridays from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The adjacent Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden features work by over 60 artists, including several of the 20th century's master sculptors. The Sculpture Garden is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. until 4:45 p.m. The New Orleans Museum of Art and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden are fully accessible to handicapped visitors and wheelchairs are available from the front desk. For more information about NOMA, call (504) 658-4100 or visit http://cms.neworleanscvb.com/cms/articles/.

 

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