Posts Tagged ‘Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center’

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center and the University of North Carolina Asheville to Present 9th Annual Reviewing Black Mountain College Conference in Asheville, NC – Sept. 29 – Oct. 1, 2017

July 31, 2017

International conference gathers artists and scholars who explore the history and legacy of the groundbreaking Black Mountain College, where Willem de Kooning, John Cage, Buckminster Fuller, Merce Cunningham, Franz Kline and Robert Rauschenberg collaborated in the Mid-20th Century.

This Year’s Conference Introduces Two New Programs:

The BMCM+AC Performance Initiative, a Multi-Part Project Offering New Dimensions to the Museum’s Visual Art Exhibitions, Including Brooklyn Youth Chorus’ Multimedia Stage Work Black Mountain Songs, Curated by Bryce Dessner (The National) and Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire) and Performed During the Conference; and Dance Heginbotham’s The Principles of Uncertainty, a New Dance Theater Work from Choreographer John Heginbotham and Author/Illustrator Maira Kalman, in March 2018
The Active Archive, a Stream of Programs Pairing the Museum’s Extensive Collection with Contemporary Artists, Curators and Thinkers, Beginning with an Exhibition Curated by Interdisciplinary Artist Martha McDonald. Conference Will Include 60+ Presenters and Keynote Addresses by Mel Chin and the Black Mountain Songs Creative Team

The Black Mountain College Museum + ArtsCenter (BMCM+AC) and the University of North Carolina Asheville are pleased to announce the ninth annual ReVIEWING Black Mountain College conference, which brings together artists and scholars to explore the history and legacy of the pioneering Black Mountain College (BMC), Sept. 29 – Oct. 1, 2017, in Asheville, NC.

In the mid-20th Century, a group of American artists and European refugees including Josef and Anni Albers, Willem de Kooning, John Cage, Buckminster Fuller, Merce Cunningham, Franz Kline and Robert Rauschenberg converged at the College and developed new artistic practices and an innovative culture of cross-disciplinary collaboration that came to define the American century. ReVIEWING Black Mountain College 9 celebrates and furthers the continuing relevance of this spirit.

Founded in 1933, Black Mountain College was one of the leading experimental liberal art schools in America until its closure in 1957. After the Bauhaus in Germany closed due to mounting antagonism from the Nazi Party, Josef and Anni Albers accepted an offer to join the BMC faculty. During their 16-year tenure in North Carolina, the Alberses helped model the college’s interdisciplinary curriculum on that of the Bauhaus, attracting an unmatched roster of teachers and students including many of the 20th century’s foremost American and European artists. Founded by arts advocate Mary Holden in 1993, BMCM+AC celebrates the history and impact of BMC as a forerunner in progressive interdisciplinary education through exhibitions, publications, lectures, films, seminars and oral histories. On July 1, 2016, BMCM+AC doubled its footprint in downtown Asheville, opening a second multi-use gallery space and study center, and developed a formal partnership with UNC Asheville.

The BMCM+AC Performance Initiative

Amidst a recent resurgence of public interest in Black Mountain College, BMCM+AC and UNC Asheville have launched a new Performance Initiative to offer residencies, workshops and performances of world-class interdisciplinary works that offer new dimensions to the Museum’s ambitious visual art exhibitions and illuminate and carry on the College’s legacy.

The BMCM+AC Performance Initiative kicks off during ReVIEWING Black Mountain College 9 with the Southeast Premiere of the acclaimed work Black Mountain Songs. Commissioned and produced by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus and BAM, and curated by Bryce Dessner (The National) and Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire), Black Mountain Songs is inspired by Black Mountain College, its prolific community of artists, and their work, and rekindles the College’s utopian spirit. The Chorus performs music written for them by eight composers: Dessner and Parry, as well as Pulitzer Prize-winner Caroline Shaw, Nico Muhly, Aleksandra Vrebalov, John King, Tim Hecker, and Jherek Bischoff. Featuring contributions from filmmaker Matt Wolf (Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell), Black Mountain Songs is an expansive choral and visual work. This exquisite production premiered at BAM in 2014. New Amsterdam Records released an acclaimed recording of the work—Brooklyn Youth Chorus’ first album—earlier this year.

The BMCM+AC Performance Initiative will continue during the week of March 13, 2018, when BMCM+AC and UNC Asheville present The Principles of Uncertainty, a new evening-length dance theater work by choreographer John Heginbotham and author/illustrator Maira Kalman. Heginbotham will direct and choreograph the work, while Kalman will oversee all elements of design—sets, props, projections and costumes. Kalman will also be present on stage, alongside six members of Dance Heginbotham, an actor and live musicians. Composer Colin Jacobsen—a member of string quartet Brooklyn Rider, chamber ensemble The Knights, and Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble—serves as Music Director of the project. Members of The Knights will perform live.

Active Archive: Martha McDonald

“We do not always create ‘works of art,’ but rather experiments; it is not our ambition to fill museums: we are gathering experience.”—Josef Albers, Artist, Black Mountain College Faculty 1933-49

The Active Archive represents an ambitious new direction for Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC), both programmatically and artistically. While BMCM+AC has included contemporary work in past exhibitions, this will be the first time it commissions new work and offers an artist residency.

The Active Archive Initiative will give interdisciplinary artist Martha McDonald time to conduct research, incubate ideas, and make new work. In the research and planning phase of the project, she will explore how objects and ideas from the museum’s collection, the historic Lake Eden campus, and the city of Asheville itself can be stitched together to reveal new dimensions of the Black Mountain College (BMC) story, and how it connects to contemporary culture and art practice.

Martha McDonald is an interdisciplinary artist whose performances and installations feature handcrafted costumes and objects that she activates through gestures of making, unmaking and singing to transmit narrative. McDonald’s practice often focuses on site-specific “interventions” in historic house museums, rare book libraries, cultural institutions, and botanic gardens to investigate the sites and their stories in order to explore how public places connect with personal histories and emotional states. Her work involves deep archive/collections research in order to uncover hidden or forgotten histories. She invites audiences to experience sites and collections from an artist’s perspective.

McDonald’s project will bring the archive and ideas of BMC alive between Sept. 29 and Dec. 30, 2017, in both BMCM+AC exhibition spaces in downtown Asheville. The project includes an exhibition, a 96-page catalogue, and community programs including a performance, conference presentation, and a gallery walk-through/talk. McDonald’s Active Archive work will create a contemporary platform to advance the discourse surrounding the living ideas and history of BMC. The result will be a gathering place for community conversations among artists, audiences, scholars and students within the new exhibition.

In one gallery, McDonald will curate an exhibition of BMC artwork exploring the importance of color, process and experimentation at BMC. The second gallery will focus on BMC’s rich history of experimental theatre and performance art, stretching from Xanti Schawinsky’s early Bauhaus-inspired theater experiments in 1937-38 through the first Happening at BMC in 1952, conceived by John Cage and David Tudor and including Merce Cunningham, Robert Rauschenberg, MC Richards and Charles Olson.

Conference Presenters and Keynote Addresses

ReVIEWING Black Mountain College will feature over 60 interdisciplinary presenters from across the United States as well as Lithuania, Russia, and Canada. Topics addressed will include the artistic practices of BMC artists Josef and Anni Albers, Ruth Asawa, Ray Johnson, Merce Cunningham, and John Cage as well as the poetics of Charles Olson, Robert Creeley, Hilda Morley, and John Weiners. The conference will feature two keynote addresses: one by conceptual artist Mel Chin, on Friday, September 29, and another, about the composition and performance of Black Mountain Songs, in the form of a panel discussion with members of the creative team and others, on Saturday, Sept. 30.

Ticketing and Locations

Most of the events comprising ReVIEWING Black Mountain College 9 will take place on the UNC Asheville campus at the Reuter Center. Advance tickets are $40 for current members of BMCM+AC and UNC Asheville’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, and $75 for non-members (BMCM+AC annual membership included). This price will increase to $100 for non-members at the door on Sept. 29. Optional discounted tickets to the Black Mountain Songs performances, on Sept. 29 & 30, are available to conference attendees for $10, along with an optional tour of the BMC Lake Eden Campus on Oct. 1 for $15. Both add-ons can be purchased with conference admission at (reviewing.brownpapertickets.com).

The Black Mountain Songs performances will take place at the Diana Wortham Theatre in downtown Asheville. Tickets can be purchased for $20 ($12 for those aged 18 and under) here.

About the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) preserves and continues the legacy of educational and artistic innovation of Black Mountain College (BMC). The institution achieves its mission through collection, conservation and educational activities including exhibitions, publications and public programs.

Arts advocate Mary Holden founded BMCM+AC in 1993 to celebrate the history of Black Mountain College as a forerunner in progressive interdisciplinary education and to explore its extraordinary impact on modern and contemporary art, dance, theater, music and performance. Today, the museum remains committed to educating the public about BMC’s history and raising awareness of its extensive legacy. BMCM+AC’s goal is to provide a gathering point for people from a variety of backgrounds to interact through art, ideas and discourse.

About Black Mountain College

The story of Black Mountain College begins in 1933 and comprises a fascinating chapter in the history of education and the arts. Conceived by John A. Rice, a brilliant and mercurial scholar who left Rollins College in a storm of controversy, Black Mountain College was born out of a desire to create a new type of college based on John Dewey’s principles of progressive education. The events that precipitated the college’s founding occurred simultaneously with the rise of Adolf Hitler, the closing of the Bauhaus school in Germany, and the beginning of the persecution of artists and intellectuals in Europe. Some of these refugees found their way to Black Mountain, either as students or faculty. Meanwhile, the United States was mired in the Great Depression.

The founders of the college believed that the study and practice of art were indispensable aspects of a student’s general liberal arts education, and they hired Josef Albers to be the first art teacher. Speaking not a word of English, he and his wife Anni left the turmoil in Hitler’s Germany and crossed the Atlantic Ocean by boat to teach art at this small, rebellious college in the mountains of North Carolina.

Black Mountain College was fundamentally different from other colleges and universities of the time. It was owned and operated by the faculty and was committed to democratic governance and to the idea that the arts are central to the experience of learning. All members of the college community participated in its operation, including farm work, construction projects, and kitchen duty. Twenty minutes east of Asheville, the secluded environment fostered a strong sense of individuality and creative intensity.

Legendary even in its own time, Black Mountain College attracted and created maverick spirits, some of whom went on to become well-known and extremely influential individuals in the latter half of the 20th century. A partial list includes Willem and Elaine de Kooning, Robert Rauschenberg, Josef and Anni Albers, Jacob Lawrence, Merce Cunningham, John Cage, Cy Twombly, Kenneth Noland, Susan Weil, Vera B. Williams, Ben Shahn, Ruth Asawa, Franz Kline, Arthur Penn, Buckminster Fuller, M.C. Richards, Francine du Plessix Gray, Charles Olson, Robert Creeley, Dorothea Rockburne and many others who have made an impact on the world in a significant way. Even now, decades after its closing in 1957, the powerful influence of Black Mountain College continues to reverberate.

About the Artists and Speakers

Brooklyn Youth Chorus (co-commissioner, producer, performer, Black Mountain Songs), now celebrating its 25th anniversary, is a collective of young singers and vocal ensembles re-envisioning choral music performance through artistic innovation, collaboration, and their distinctively beautiful sound. With an incredibly versatile range and repertoire, Brooklyn Youth Chorus combines intensive voice training and music study with exceptional performance experiences. Founded in 1992, Brooklyn Youth Chorus’s after-school program encompasses over 500 students in multi-level training divisions and advanced performing ensembles. With an emphasis on commissioning, the Chorus’s repertoire includes more than 100 original works and world premieres.

Bryce Dessner (creator, co-curator, composer, Black Mountain Songs) is a Brooklyn-based composer, guitarist, and curator who is also a member of the Grammy Award-nominated band the National. Dessner’s recent commissions include pieces for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the National Audiovisual Institute of Poland, the Grammy Award-winning Kronos Quartet, and the new music ensemble eighth blackbird, among others. The first recordings of Dessner’s compositions, performed by Kronos Quartet, were released in 2013 by Anti on an album entitled Aheym. In 2014 Deutsche Grammophon/Universal Music Classics released St. Carolyn By the Sea; Suite from the Paul Thomas Anderson film There Will Be Blood, which features three of Dessner’s orchestral works performed by the Copenhagen Philharmonic and conducted by André de Ridder.

Richard Reed Parry (co-curator, composer, Black Mountain Songs) is the red-headed musical polymath at the heart of the inventive art rock band Arcade Fire, but his work and story reach far beyond. Born in Toronto and raised in a community of ex-pat British isles folk musicians, Parry studied electro-acoustics and contemporary dance at Concordia University. As well as contributing to Arcade Fire’s success over the past 10 years, he also released his debut album as a composer this year entitled Music for Heart and Breath on Deutsche Grammophon. Parry has also written commissioned works for Kronos Quartet, yMusic, and Bryce Dessner, and his chamber works also have been performed by the Calder Quartet and Who’s WhoWho’s Who Warhol Dervish. He has also collaborated and performed with artists like David Bowie, The National, the Unicorns, Neil Young, Mick Jagger, Sam Amidon, Nadia Sirota, Colin Stetson, Little Scream, La La La Human Steps, and Islands.

Maira Kalman (co-creator, designer,The Principles of Uncertainty) is the author and illustrator of 18 children’s books including Fireboat, Looking at Lincoln, and What Pete Ate, as well as five books for adults. Her online columns for the New York Times were compiled into two volumes, The Principles of Uncertainty and The Pursuit of Happiness. Her two most recent books about design, My Favorite Things and Ah-Ha to Zig Zag were recently released in conjunction with Maira Kalman: My Favorite Things – the exhibit she curated for the re-opening of the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City. Maira’s recent publications include Girls on Lawns with text by Daniel Handler, in conjunction with the photography department of the Museum of Modern Art, and Beloved Dog.

Originally from Anchorage, Alaska, John Heginbotham (co-creator, choreographer,The Principles of Uncertainty) graduated from The Juilliard School in 1993, and was a member of the Mark Morris Dance Group from 1998 – 2012. In 2011 he founded Dance Heginbotham (DH). The ensemble has been presented and commissioned by Bard College, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, The Joyce Theater, The Kennedy Center, and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, among others. In the spring of 2016, DH toured to Indonesia, Laos, and the Philippines DanceMotion USASM, a project of the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), produced by BAM. A frequent collaborator with live music, John has worked with numerous composers and musicians including Alarm Will Sound, American Classical Orchestra, Brooklyn Rider, Fischerspooner, Tyondai Braxton, Colin Jacobsen, Gabriel Kahane, and Shara Worden.

Martha McDonald (curator, Active Archive exhibition) is an interdisciplinary artist whose performances and installations feature handcrafted costumes and objects that she activates through gestures of making and unmaking and singing to transmit narrative. McDonald’s practice often focuses on site-specific “interventions” in historic house museums, libraries and gardens which investigate the sites and their stories to explore how these public places connect with personal histories and emotional states.

McDonald’s work has been produced in Berlin at Brotfabrik; in Melbourne, Australia at Linden Centre for Contemporary Arts and Craft Victoria; in Sydney, Australia, at Elizabeth Bay House; in New York at P.S. 122, The Joyce SoHo, HERE Center for the Arts and Galapagos Arts Space; in Washington, DC, at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery; in San Francisco at Theatre of Yugen; in Chicago at Links Hall; in Baltimore at the Evergreen Museum & Library and 14K Cabaret; and in Philadelphia at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Painted Bride Art Center, The Prince Music Theater and the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival. She has been selected for artist residencies at Monash University (Melbourne, Australia), The MacDowell Colony (Peterborough, NH), Evergreen Museum & Library at Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, MD) and The Rosenbach Museum & Library (Philadelphia, PA). She has received fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Independence Foundation. She completed a Masters of Fine Art at Monash University through a Monash Research Graduate Scholarship.

Mel Chin (keynote speaker) was born in Houston, Texas, in 1951. Chin’s art, which is both analytical and poetic, evades easy classification. He is known for the broad range of approaches in his art, including works that require multi-disciplinary, collaborative teamwork and works that conjoin cross-cultural aesthetics with complex ideas.

Chin also insinuates art into unlikely places, including destroyed homes, toxic landfills, and even popular television, investigating how art can provoke greater social awareness and responsibility. He developed Revival Field (1989-ongoing), a project that has been a pioneer in the field of “green remediation,” the use of plants to remove toxic, heavy metals from the soil. From 1995-1998 he formed the collective the GALA Committee, which produced In the Name of the Place, a conceptual public art project conducted on American prime-time television. In KNOWMAD, Chin worked with software engineers to create a video game based on rug patterns of nomadic people facing cultural disappearance. His film 9-11/9-11, a hand-drawn, 24 minute, joint Chilean/U.S. Production, won the prestigious Pedro Sienna Award for Best Animation from Chile’s National Council for the Arts and Cultures, in 2007. Chin also promotes “works of art” that have the ultimate effect of benefiting science, as in Revival Field, and also in the recent Operation Paydirt/Fundred Dollar Bill Project, an attempt to make New Orleans a lead-safe city. These projects are consistent with a conceptual philosophy that emphasizes the practice of art to include sculpting and bridging the natural and social ecology.

Chin’s work was documented in the popular PBS program “Art of the 21st Century.” He has received numerous awards and grants from organizations such as the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council for the Arts, Art Matters, Creative Capital, and the Penny McCall, Pollock/Krasner, Joan Mitchell, Rockefeller and Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundations, among others.

For more information, please contact Blake Zidell or Ron Gaskill at Blake Zidell & Associates by e-mail at (blake@blakezidell.com), (ron@blakezidell.com) or call 718/643-9052.

Advertisements

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Calls for Papers and Proposals – Deadline June 30, 2016

February 29, 2016

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) is issuing a call for papers and proposals for the 8th Annual ReVIEWING Black Mountain College conference, hosted and sponsored by BMCM+AC and UNC Asheville on Sept. 23-25, 2016. The call welcomes any theme related to Black Mountain College, with optional special topics: “The Painters of Black Mountain College” and “Democracy and the Liberal Arts”. All disciplines are welcome, including papers, performances, panels, and workshops.

The deadline for submissions is June 30, 2016.

For information about submitting a proposal, contact Alice Sebrell by e-mail at (alice@blackmountaincollege.org) or call 828/350-8484.

The keynote speaker this year will be Helen Molesworth, Chief Curator at Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. From 2010 to 2014 she served as Chief Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art / Boston, where she organized “Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933 – 1957” with Associate Curator, Ruth Erickson.

ReVIEWING Black Mountain College is an annual conference that preserves the legacy of Black Mountain College and explores the work of contemporary scholars who bring new insights into the college’s short life. In previous years presenters have examined special topics such as “The Writers of Black Mountain College”,  “Bauhaus + USA”, “Buckminster Fuller’s Legacy”, and “Shaping Craft + Design”. While the ReVIEWING conference welcomes proposals on any themes related to Black Mountain College, this year’s special topics will be “The Painters of Black Mountain College” and “Democracy and the Liberal Arts”. The keynote speaker, Helen Molesworth, will share insights from her research for the exhibition and corresponding publication Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933-1957, on view last fall at the Institute of Contemporary Art / Boston and now at the Hammer Museum at UCLA.

Last year, ReVIEWING Black Mountain College 7 featured over 50 cross-disciplinary presenters from around the country as well as Ireland, Switzerland, Lithuania, Germany, and Austria. ReVIEWING Black Mountain College 8 invites scholars and artists to build upon the conference’s strong and diverse foundation.

The deadline for proposals is June 30, 2016.

For information please contact Alice Sebrell by e-mail at (alice@blackmountaincollege.org) or call 828/350-8484.

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Offers Lecture by Arne Emerson – Oct. 23, 2015

August 31, 2015

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, located at 56 Broadway in downtown Asheville, NC, invites the community to join us on Friday, Oct. 23, 2015, from noon-1:30pm, for “IDEAS WITHOUT WALLS / IN-BETWEEN THE SPACES”, an annual presentation by a leading figure in the world of design co-sponsored by Western Carolina University Design Development Foundation.

Free for BMCM+AC members & students w/ID / $7 non-members.

This year’s speaker will be award-winning architect Arne Emerson of Morphosis Architects. Emerson will present recent work at Morphosis, spanning from large-scale urban planning projects to built work at multiple scales. Focusing on the interaction between design, technology, and fabrication, Emerson will outline how ‘process’ emerges as the central driver and catalyst for bringing theory and contextual research into realized form.

Emerson is a Principal at Morphosis Architects with more than 20 years of experience. He joined Morphosis in 2009 and has been involved in the design and construction of several key projects for the office. Throughout his career, he has played an integral role in designing and realizing several award-winning projects including Cultural, Civic, Commercial, Residential, and Master Plans, spanning four continents and fifteen countries.  He recently completed the design and construction of the first museum for Morphosis Architects, the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas, TX, and is currently working on several competitions, a new US Embassy in Lebanon, the world’s tallest hotel in Switzerland, and a world headquarters in Milan. Prior to joining Morphosis, Emerson was a Design Principal with Studio Daniel Libeskind for almost a decade, playing an integral role in the design and construction of many significant projects including the extension to the Denver Art Museum, the Royal Ontario Museum, and the 18.36.54 House. Emerson lectures extensively on the design and construction process and is active in academics as a guest critic and teaching graduate studio courses.

For further information contact Alice Sebrell, Program Director, Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center by calling 828/350-8484 or visit (http://www.blackmountaincollege.org)

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Awards Travel Scholarship to Carley Brandau

June 29, 2015

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC), in Asheville, NC, announces that Design Apprentice and Museum Intern Carley Brandau will travel to Moscow, Russia this summer to take part in the exhibition “Costume at the Turn of the Century 1990-2015” at the A.A. Bakhrushin State Central Theatre Museum as part of BMCM+AC’s new Research Travel Grant program. Brandau’s BMCM+AC-administered travel scholarship is generously funded through a donation by Randy Shull and Hedy Fischer.

Brandau, a local artist and UNC Asheville graduate, began at BMCM+AC in October 2014 as a Design Apprentice, working under internationally-known, Asheville-based designer and artist Randy Shull on the redesign and renovation of the museum’s 56 Broadway gallery space. In February, 2015, Brandau was selected as a member of the inaugural class of Windgate Museum Interns at BMCM+AC. The Internship program, Apprenticeship program, and gallery redesign and renovation are part of the museum’s three-year Windgate Charitable Foundation-funded expansion plan.

615black-mt.-college-Inversions-1-&-2
“Inversions 1&2” by Carley Brandau, Photograph by Jonathan Mora

Brandau’s work, characterized by the wearable bent wood sculptures in her series, “Adornment”, is based on the repeated architectural curvilinear forms she experienced firsthand over the course of her travels. She states, “As an artist, my goals are to encourage traveling as a means of education, collaboration among all mediums of creativity, and repurposing materials to create something unrecognizable.” The A.A. Bakhrushin State Central Theatre Museum has acquired two of her sculptures for their permanent collection. Brandau will share images and reflections from her experience on the BMCM+AC website (www.blackmountaincollege.org) after she returns on July 8, 2015.

“Costume at the Turn of the Century 1990-2015”, curated by Igor Roussanoff will showcase the development of ideas, materials, and technologies of costume design over the past twenty-five years from all over the world. It is the largest costume exhibition to date, with 34 countries represented.

Through its Apprenticeship program, Internship programs, and the Research Travel Grant program, BMCM+AC honors and continues Black Mountain College’s ethos of “learning by doing”. Pending available funding, BMCM+AC plans to continue the travel scholarship program for future interns on an annual basis.

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) preserves and continues the unique legacy of educational and artistic innovation of Black Mountain College. We achieve our mission through collection, conservation, and educational activities including exhibitions, publications, and public programs.

Black Mountain College (BMC) was born out of a desire to create a new type of college based on John Dewey’s principles of progressive education. The founders of the College believed that the study and practice of art were indispensable aspects of a student’s general liberal arts education, and they hired Josef Albers—from the recently shuttered Bauhaus in Germany—to direct the art program. Legendary even in its own time, Black Mountain College attracted and created maverick spirits, some of whom went on to become well-known and extremely influential individuals in the latter half of the 20th century. A partial list includes: Willem and Elaine de Kooning, Robert Rauschenberg, Josef and Anni Albers, Jacob Lawrence, Merce Cunningham, John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Cy Twombly, Buckminster Fuller, M.C. Richards, Charles Olson, Dorothea Rockburne, and many others, famous and not-so-famous, who have impacted the world in a significant way. Even now, decades after its closing, the powerful influence of Black Mountain College continues to reverberate.

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Announces {Re}HAPPENING 2014 – Apr. 5, 2014

March 4, 2014

The Media Arts Project (MAP) and the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) in Asheville, NC, announce that tickets are now on sale for the fifth annual {Re}HAPPENING, taking place on Saturday, Apr. 5, 2014, from 6pm to midnight in the original dining hall of the former Black Mountain College at Lake Eden in Black Mountain, NC.

The evening re-imagines Black Mountain College’s tradition of Saturday night parties and performances, and pays homage to the innovative artists of the legendary Black Mountain College. The event launches a contemporary platform for artists and patrons to experience adventurous art and creativity in the present day.

More than 80 artists will come together to create and share art on the grounds of the original campus and in the spirit of Black Mountain College. Vinnie’s Neighborhood Italian will again provide the main course for the dinner ticket, with dozens of local restaurants contributing.

The evening has two ticket levels available — a dinner ticket for $100 ($85 for members of BMCM+AC,) and an after-dinner ticket for $30 ($25 for BMCM+AC members) which includes two drink tickets and access to all art installations and performances after 7:30pm. Gray Line Trolley will be providing roundtrip trolley service from downtown Asheville for $8.

Additionally, a $50 “fund-an-artist” purchase can be added on to any ticket sale as a way to make a tax-deductible contribution to a {Re}HAPPENING artist. The buyer of this ticket can choose which project/artist he or she would like to fund directly. This is a great way for artists to build financial support from their peers and advocates.

Tickets can be purchased online at (http://rehappening.com/?page_id=2420) and can be purchased in person through Black Mountain College Museum or Harvest Records (after-dinner and shuttle tickets only).

About the Artists of {Re}HAPPENING 2014

With over 80 artists participating, this year’s event promises to be as eclectic as ever. The lineup includes dancers, sound and visual artists from WNC, along with several artists from the midwest and northeast. Performances are slated to take place throughout the campus — including a performance on the tennis courts by members of the local art collective, Apothecary. The Asheville Darkroom will set up a camera obscura in the bed of a 40 ft. trailer; local composer Elisa Faires will create an immersive sound experience in the campus’ theatre, and the gymnasium will be home to a variety of dance performances. Additionally, this year four “Chance Operations” teams are participating.

A full 2014 artist lineup is available online at (www.rehappening.com).

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Announces Free Admission Policy

February 24, 2014

As part of its continuing celebration of the 80th year anniversary of the founding of Black Mountain College (BMC) and the 20th year anniversary of the founding of the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC), the Board of BMCM+AC has approved a new admissions policy, providing free admission to its exhibition and gallery spaces, located at 56 Broadway Street, in downtown Asheville, NC.

BMCM+AC, which celebrates the legacy of creativity and educational innovation associated with Black Mountain College, announces this free admissions policy in the spirit of the educational and experimental nature of its namesake, seeking to welcome new and growing WNC and tourist audiences to enjoy, explore and understand the history, and ongoing relevance, of this famous college.

214BMCM+AC-exterioralt

Board Chair, Dr. Brian Butler, announced this news, commenting that “As an institution that adds to and thrives within Asheville’s amazing cultural offerings, we thought that a proper celebration of our 20 years as a museum and the 80 year anniversary of the opening of Black Mountain College would include free admission to our unique exhibits. We think of this as both a thank you to our community and as a gentle invite to anyone who has not already stopped in to learn about our exhibitions and events.”

This new policy offers free regular admission to the BMC Museum + Arts Center during the following regular hours when BMCM+AC is open to the public: (noon- 4pm, Tuesday-Wednesday and 11am-5pm Thursday, Friday and Saturday).

The current exhibition is “Cynthia Homire: Vision Quest” on view through May 17, 2014.

Upcoming special events include:

• Mar. 6 – film screening (Merce Cunningham Dance Company: Robert Rauschenberg Collaborations)

• Mar. 28 – presentation (The Democratic Surround and the Forgotten History of Multimedia) by Fred Turner, Associate Professor of Communication and Director of the Program in Science, Technology and Society at Stanford University

• Mar. 30 – poetry and music with Paulus Berensohn, Tracey Schmidt and musicians Chris Rosser and Peter Levitov

• Apr. 5 – the annual {Re}HAPPENING, an immersive, multi-sensory experience of art, performance & food in the Dining Hall and on the ground of the BMC Lake Eden Campus, now Camp Rockmont

• May 2-4 – weekend workshop called “The Poetics of Audience: Experimenting with Points of Address in Poetry,” taught by Jaye Bartell, Eric Gelsinger, Nathanael Roney and Bridget Elmer

• May 15 – presentation (We Were BMC Kids) with Megan Rice and John Corkran

And looking ahead to the fall, our 6th Annual ReVIEWING Black Mountain College conference Sept. 26-28 co-hosted by UNC Asheville and focusing on The Writers of Black Mountain College this year.

This decision to change its admission policy reflects the Board’s dedication to advancing the stated goals of BMCM+AC, as expressed in its mission statement:

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center preserves and continues the unique legacy of educational and artistic innovation of Black Mountain College for public study and enjoyment. We achieve our mission through collection, conservation, and educational activities including exhibitions, publications, and public programs.

For more information about the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center and our programming, please contact Alice Sebrell, Program Director at 828/350-8484 or e-mail to (alice@blackmountaincollege.org).

Media Arts Project and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Celebrate Innovation and Collaboration in the Arts – Apr. 6, 2013

January 15, 2013

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) and the Media Arts Project (MAP) announce the 4th Annual {Re}HAPPENING, on Saturday, Apr. 6, 2013, from 6pm to Midnight in the original dining hall of the former Black Mountain College, now Camp Rockmont. Inspired by our imaginings about what a “typical” Saturday night at Black Mountain College might have been like, the {Re}HAPPENING pays tribute to the groundbreaking artistic innovation of Black Mountain College as well as its community tradition of Saturday night parties and performances. The goal of the event is to bring BMC’s dynamic energy into the present day. Many people who have attended a previous {Re}HAPPENING consider it to be one of the very best events of the year.

113black-mt-college-museum
Photo from the 2012 {Re}HAPPENING by Shawn Hollingsworth

The Apr. 6, 2013, event will begin with a cocktail hour, leading into a seated “family style” dinner. This year’s dinner will feature a guest chef/curator and an expanded focus on the culinary arts. The second part of the evening, will begin at 8:30pm and include an extended evening of music, art and performance along with drinks and food trucks. A limited number of Early Bird tickets for the entire evening including cocktails and dinner are available for $65 ($55 for BMCM+AC members). The second half of the evening begins at 8:30pm at a ticket price of $20 ($15 for members). The overall event will end by midnight. Tickets are available online via the BMC Museum + Arts Center website (www.blackmountaincollege.org), at (www.rehappening.com) or in person at the museum/arts center (56 Broadway, downtown Asheville).

At each year’s {Re}HAPPENING, local restaurants provide flavors, scents and nourishment to both the audience and the artists. The evening brings together more than sixty artists from the region’s diverse creative communities in a beautiful setting that occupies a unique place in history. The opportunity for contemporary artists and performers to collaborate and create new work in the dining hall, the roundhouse, the lodges, the outdoor grounds and waters of Lake Eden on the former Black Mountain College campus makes the {Re}HAPPENING a singular and deeply resonant event.

The 2013 artist lineup will be announced soon, so stay tuned to (www.rehappening.com) for updates.

For further info call the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center at 828/350-8484 or visit (www.blackmountaincollege.org).

Media Arts Project and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Host Third Annual {Re}HAPPENING – Apr. 7, 2012

February 29, 2012

The Media Arts Project (MAP) and the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) in Asheville, NC, announce the third annual {Re}HAPPENING, on Saturday, Apr. 7, 2012, from 6pm to Midnight in the original dining hall of the former Black Mountain College, now Camp Rockmont. In partnership with the MAP, this BMCM+AC event pays tribute to Black Mountain College by bringing its dynamic energy into the present day. The project has developed as an innovative fundraising and community building collaboration between the two non-profits, balancing the history, innovation and experience of BMCM+AC, with the forward-thinking and media-based collective of artists that defines the MAP.

Among the more than fifty artists participating in this year’s event will be two projects supported by the MAP Community Grant, which was completely funded by the proceeds from the events in 2010 and 2011. “The {Re}HAPPENING provides an opportunity for the MAP and BMCM+AC to directly support local artists by helping to develop and showcase their projects, while simultaneously contributing to innovation and culture in Western North Carolina,” says Gene Felice, a member of the MAP Board of Directors and the {Re}HAPPENING’s artistic instigator. “The MAP is thrilled to once again offer the WNC arts community direct funding, after the outpouring of creativity and support that made the first two {Re}HAPPENING events a success.” Two projects were chosen and each funded with $1500 grants in the 2011-2012 grant cycle, supporting work from 3 local artists which will premiere at this year’s {Re}HAPPENING. Profits from this year’s event will enable future grant funding cycles.

The Apr. 7, 2012, event will begin with a cocktail hour, leading into a seated “family style” dinner. The second part of the evening will include drinks, light appetizers and an extended evening of art, performance & dancing. Tickets for the entire event including dinner are $60 ($50 for BMCM+AC and MAP members); dinner begins at 6pm. The second half begins at 8:30pm at a ticket price of $15 ($10 for members).  The overall event will end by midnight.

At each year’s {Re}HAPPENING, local restaurants provide flavors, scents and nourishment to both the audience and the artists. The evening brings together more than fifty artists from the region’s diverse creative communities in a setting that occupies a unique place in history.  The opportunity for contemporary artists and performers to collaborate and create new work in the dining hall, the roundhouse, the lodges, the outdoor grounds and waters of Lake Eden makes the {Re}HAPPENING a singular and deeply resonant event.

Vinnie’s Neighborhood Italian will again provide the main course, and dozens of local restaurants will contribute.  The 2012 artist lineup will be announced soon, so stay tuned visit (www.rehappening.com).

The Media Arts Project (MAP) cultivates innovative arts & technology in western North Carolina. Because the media arts are integral to the vibrant cultural and economic life of the region, the MAP provides ways for media artists to connect with resources, professional opportunities, and one another through events, grant programs, and (www.themap.org), a dynamic portfolio and networking site.

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) preserves and continues the unique legacy of educational and artistic innovation of Black Mountain College. We achieve our mission through collection, conservation, and educational activities including exhibitions, publications, and public programs.

For further information call the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center at 828/350-8484 or e-mail to (bmcmac@bellsouth.net).

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Offers Two Lecture by Eleanor Heartney in Two Locations – Mar. 5 & 6, 2012

February 6, 2012

Award-winning arts writer Eleanor Heartney will speak in Cullowhee, NC, and Asheville, NC, about Contemporary Art and Women Artists. Heartney will give two lively presentations about contemporary art on Mar. 5 (Cullowhee) and Mar. 6 (Asheville). Heartney’s talks will include related images and raise philosophical questions about art and the contemporary artist’s role in society.

The first talk, Tales of Plastic Surgery, Genetically Altered Rabbits, and Other Acts of Art, will take place on Monday, Mar. 5, 2012 at 5pm in Western Carolina University’s Bardo Art Center, room 130. The lecture title refers to two of the many artists examined in Heartney’s book Art & Now.

“One of those artists, Eduardo Kac, genetically altered a rabbit to glow green under certain light; the other, French artist Orlan, had parts of her face surgically altered to resemble women in famous art historical paintings,” according to WCU Associate Professor of Art, Marya Roland. “Both Kac and Orlan push the limits of what we consider art, and in her book, Heartney poses the question, ‘should we do things simply because we can?'” The lecture is free and open to the public.

On Tuesday, Mar. 6, 2012, at 7:30pm, Heartney will present Out of the Shadows: the Changing Place of Women Artists in Our Times at the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, 56 Broadway, Asheville, NC. Heartney will discuss the broader topic of women artists’ changing roles and relate it, in particular, to painter Pat Passlof who has concurrent exhibitions at Western Carolina University’s Fine Art Museum and BMCM+AC. Heartney wrote the essay contained in the exhibition catalogue for the exhibitions. Admission is $10 for public and $5 for BMCM+AC members and students w/ID.

Heartney is a contributing editor for Art in America and has written extensively for other publications including Artnews, The New Art Examiner, the Washington Post, and The New York Times. She is author of several noteworthy books about art such as Art and Now, Defending Complexity: Art, Politics and the New World Order, and Critical Condition: American Culture at the Crossroads, and she is co-author of After the Revolution: Women who Transformed Contemporary Art, winner of the Susan Koppelman Award. The recipient of the College Art Association’s Frank Jewett Mather Award for distinction in art criticism, Heartney is also a past President of AICA-USA, the American section of the International Art Critics Association. In 2008 she was honored by the French government as a Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.

Heartney’s visit to WNC is supported by a Western Carolina University Visiting Scholar’s Grant, the WCU School of Art and Design, and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center with support from the North Carolina Arts Council, the Beattie Foundation and The Mary Duke Biddle Foundation.

The Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center preserves and continues the unique legacy of educational and artistic innovation of Black Mountain College for public study and enjoyment. We achieve our mission through collection, conservation, and educational activities including exhibitions, publications, and public programs.

For further information call 828/350-8484 or visit (www.blackmountaincollege.org).

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Holds Public Panel Presentation on Photography – Sept. 3, 2011

July 28, 2011


Robert Frank teaching © Peter Schlessinger

Forty years ago an independent photographic project and study center called Apeiron Workshops opened in rural New York two hours north of Manhattan. Over the course of the next decade, students enrolled there to study with a veritable who’s who of mid-20th century creative photography,* and participated in the center’s programs, including publishing, documentary, teaching and exhibitions projects. This Labor Day weekend, as part of an Apeiron reunion being held in Montreat, NC, a public panel discussion entitled, Photography Then and Now, on the arc of creative photography across the four decades since Apeiron opened will be held in downtown Asheville at the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, at 56 Broadway, on Sept. 3, 2011, beginning at 8pm. Admission will be $5 and seating is limited. Call Benjamin Porter at 828/281-1825 or e-mail to (apeironreunion@gmail.com).

Panel members will include:

A.D. Coleman, photography critic, historian, curator, poet, teacher, lecturer, editor, and publisher. Recipient of numerous international awards for his writings on photography, nominated for a Pushcart Prize for his poetry, Alan Coleman has established a substantial presence on the World Wide Web since his home page made its debut in the spring of 1995. His current projects include Photocritic International, The Photography Criticism CyberArchive, and the electronic magazine The Nearby Café, all of which can be accessed via (www.adcoleman.com). Alan was a frequent guest critic at Apeiron during his tenure as The New York Times’ first photography critic.

Elaine Mayes, prolific Guggenheim-winning photographer and filmmaker, and the first woman to teach both photography and film in an academic curriculum at the college level. Elaine’s teaching posts have included Hampshire College (a founding member of the department), Pratt Institute, Bard College and New York University, from which she retired as Chair of the Photography department at the Tisch School of the Arts in 2000. Elaine was a frequent winter guest artist and summer workshop leader at Apeiron, her work was included in The First Apeiron Portfolio, and she was one of the 12 imagemakers who did commissioned work for Apeiron’s NEA-funded photographic survey, The Long Island Project.

John Rohrbach, Senior Curator of Photographs at the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth, Texas. As a curator at the museum (where he has worked since 1992) he has assembled exhibitions on the works of Frank Gohlke, Elliot Porter, Richard Avedon, and Robert Adams, among others.  In addition he has done extensive research and writing about Paul Strand, reflecting the fact that earlier in his career he was Director of the Paul Strand Archive for the Aperture Foundation. Before that, he was an Apeiron staff member and manager of Apeiron’s Photographic Archives and Traveling Exhibitions Program. His Ph.D. Dissertation was “Art for Society’s Sake: Paul Strand’s Photographic Visions”.

*Bernice Abbott, Robert Adams, Diane Arbus, Bruce Davidson, Paul Caponigro, Linda Connor, Judy Dater, Robert Frank, Lee Friedlander, Ralph Gibson, Emmett Gowin, Robert Heineken, William Klein, Danny Lyon, Elaine Mayes, Duane Michals, Lisette Model, Aaron Siskind, Frederick Sommer, Jerry Uelsmann, Minor White and Gary Winogrand, plus Magnum photographers Charles Harbutt, Mary Ellen Mark, Susan Meiselas, Gilles Peress, and Burk Uzzle… among others.

For more information contact Benjamin Porter at 828/281-1825 or e-mail to (apeironreunion@gmail.com).