Friday, April 03, 2009

[Arts] Interesting Exhibits in Nebraska

There were many interesting exhibits I found throughout Lincoln this week, but the two standouts were the Sheldon Museum of Art's Evolving Eden exhibit that will be open till May 31st, and Lentz Center for Asian Culture's exhibit showcasing Hong Lei: Conversing With The Ancients. Unfortunately I couldn't really get good pictures for you due to policies regarding photography at the Sheldon Museum of Art. 

These exhibits should be seen if you're in Lincoln in the near future.

The premise behind the Evolving Eden exhibit is the question of the environment and our relationship with our surroundings. They selected three artists. The amazing Arno Rafael Minkkinen, Han Ejkelboom's fascinating Paris-New York-Shanghai and Edward Burtynsky's Quarry series, which examines consumerism and its toll on our natural resources. 

Of the three, I most appreciated Minkkinen's work and will have to make greater effort to keep abreast of his approach.

Born in 1945 in Helsinki, Minkkinen has been photographing himself since 1971 as a timeless landscape of the human figure amid the forces of nature. The element of water - upon which his feet race, below which his torso dives or above which his being floats - provides the common ground for his surrealistic vision. There is no manipulation, no darkroom trickery, nothing but the single instant of the shutter and the placement of the lens. 

You can spot his work at 

Hong Lei had an intriguing exhibit at the Lentz Center for Asian Culture in which he provided a modern conversation or reinterpretation of several classics of traditional Chinese art, an approach that reflected the influence of postmodern trends in contemporary Western art as part of an approach to apparently create "an independent field of art production, exhibition, and criticism in China and beyond," according to Wu Hung, an artist and art critic.

There were several striking works. I found his 2004 piece, I dreamed that I hung upside-down and with Mao Zedong listened to Emperor Huizong play the lute particularly stirring and evocative.

I'm still in the process of assessing an interview with Hong Lei, and will have additional comments on the matter later.

1 comment:

Anchalee (Joy) P. Roberts said...

That's exciting! I hope you will get the interview with Hong Lei. I look forward to it. And i will defenitely try to find time for the exhibits at the Sheldon, esp. the b&w ones by Arno. I'm a big fan of Ansel Adams and B&W photos in general.