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Upcoming Events

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“Awash with Color:…

Apr 30 - May 21, 2016
Join us at the Historic New Orleans Collection for the new exhibition… more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
Join us for the Break Science Live Band. more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
Join us for Jamie Mclean Band & Flow Tribe. more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
Join us for Robert Walter's 20th Congress! more

Backyard Grooves

Apr 30, 2016 - Jan 10, 2026
In The Voodoo Garden, All Ages.   more

Big Easy Big Heart…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
5K road race more

City Park Presents -…

Apr 30 - May 1, 2016
Join us in the New Orleans Botanical Garden in New Orleans City Park for City… more

DISNEY ON ICE…

Apr 30 - May 1, 2016
The celebration of the century comes alive in Disney On Ice celebrates 100… more

Disney on Ice: 100…

Apr 30 - May 1, 2016
Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic! The monumental ice skating… more

Double Dose

Apr 30, 2016 - Jan 10, 2026
ActionActionReaction and friends keep the dance floor energized with mixes of… more

Free Movie Night -…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
The Big Lebowski starring Jeff Bridges and John Goodman (RATED R - please… more

Irivin Mayfield Jazz…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

Mama's Music

Apr 30, 2016 - Jan 10, 2026
In Big Mama's Lounge. 21+ with valid photo I.D. 7-string guitarist Justin… more

MUSICIANS CLINIC WITH…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
Soul-steeped folk singer Alynda Lee Segarra fronts local Americana heroes… more

New Orleans Jazz &…

Apr 30 - May 1, 2016
Jazz Fest is the celebration of the unique culture and heritage of New Orleans… more

New Orleans Photo…

Apr 30 - May 29, 2016
The New Orleans Photo Alliance (NOPA), is proud to be the first venue to … more

Saenger Theatre…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
This all-star event pays tribute to The Band's milestone final concert through… more

The Historic New…

Apr 30 - May 7, 2016
In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of World War I, The Historic New… more

The House of Groove

Apr 30, 2016
The House of Groove is a House Party and a live improvised musical journey… more

The Irish House…

Apr 30 - 30, 2016
Join us at the Irish House for Crossing Canal. more

“Awash with Color:…

Apr 30 - May 21, 2016
Join us at the Historic New Orleans Collection for the new exhibition… 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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