NEW YORK – The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) presents Beth Lipman: Collective Elegy, from September 25 to April 4, 2021, a major midcareer survey that is the first to assess the remarkable achievements of the renowned contemporary artist. From sumptuous displays of excess, including provocative installations comprising hundreds of individual glass elements, to poetic and contemplative works in glass, metal, clay, video, and photography, the works on view are ethereal meditations on time and mortality and simultaneously sobering indictments of our contemporary consumer culture and its impact on the planet.
“For more than twenty years, Beth has built on the still-life tradition, illustrating the ability of objects to signify wealth, class, and identity. She further critiques Western society’s capitalist values and the environmental consequences of unfettered consumption,” said Samantha De Tillio, MAD’s curator of collections. “A new project, House Album, investigates the subjectivity of history and the necessity of including a wider range of voices in its telling; a topic of particular importance in 2020.”
Lipman’s monumental Laid (Time-) Table with Cycads forms the centerpiece of the exhibition. Melding landscape and tablescape through representations of prehistoric plant life bursting forth through a table laden with goblets, bowls of fruit, books, textiles, and other cultural markers, the work evokes the interdependence and tension between humanity and the natural world.
“Collective Elegy represents a decade of investigation centering the human condition, demarcating the present moment in deep time,” said Lipman. “In this sense, the work examines aspects of material culture and history through still lifes, site-specific installations, and photographs.”
Accompanying the exhibition is an 88-page catalog, published by the Museum and Lucia | Marquand, featuring full-color plates of Lipman’s artworks, to be released in early 2021. Public programs and workshops to be scheduled during the run of the exhibition will illuminate the exhibition’s content and themes further and will encourage participants to explore and consider the materiality of glass.
Opening in conjunction with Collective Elegy, New York City’s Nohra Haime Gallery will present EVERY LAST THING, the first solo exhibition of Lipman’s work at the gallery, from November 5 to January 16, 2021.
Beth Lipman: Collective Elegy is curated by MAD’s curator of collections, Samantha De Tillio.
Generous support for Beth Lipman: Collective Elegy provided by Marian and Russell Burke, Victoria F. Morris, Sharon Karmazin, Alturas Foundation, Art Alliance for Contemporary Glass, and Kohler Foundation.
This exhibition is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.
ABOUT BETH LIPMAN:
Born in Philadelphia, Beth Lipman is a multidisciplinary sculptor living and working in Wisconsin. She earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Tyler School of Art, Temple University in 1994. Lipman has received numerous awards including the USA Berman Bloch Fellowship, Pollock Krasner Grant, and a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant and was recently inducted into the American Craft Council’s College of Fellows. Lipman’s work has been widely exhibited at institutions such as Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, FL; ICA/MECA, Portland, ME; RISD Museum, Providence, RI; Milwaukee Art Museum, WI and Gustavsbergs Konsthall, Gustavsberg, Sweden. Lipman’s work is in the collection of over 30 museums, including the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, NC; Des Moines Art Center, IA; Brooklyn Museum of Art, NY; Kemper Museum for Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO; and the Jewish Museum, New York, New York.
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