With Testing Testing, the Ackland Art Museum highlights ways in which art made since 1960 has tested possibilities both within and beyond conventional boundaries of art-making. Through experimentation, innovation, and skill, artists have assessed the potential not only of new materials in new combinations, but also of traditional modes such as figuration and abstraction.
The largest presentation of the Ackland’s relatively unknown collection of modern painting and sculpture to date, the exhibition includes works by approximately 50 artists, including José Bedia, Sanford Biggers, Anthony Caro, Carlos Cruz-Diez, Thornton Dial, Barkley Hendricks, Rachel Howard, Annette Lemieux, Al Held, Hung Liu, Takashi Murakami, Kenneth Noland, Richard Nonas, Jules Olitski, Tony Oursler, Nam June Paik, Philip Pearlstein, Ken Price, Sean Scully, George Segal, Yinka Shonibare, Lorna Simpson, Do-Ho Suh, Stella Waitzkin, John Wesley, H.C. Westermann, and others.
Rather than offering a historical survey of developments, Testing Testing presents stimulating and evocative groupings, crossing cultures and chronologies. The bringing together of signature works, several important new acquisitions, and some surprises from storage affords the Museum the opportunity to test what a large-scale, long-term installation of modern and contemporary art at the Ackland might look like. Visitors are in turn invited to test their curiosity, imaginations, and responses when encountering an astonishingly diverse array of powerful, beautiful, puzzling, and liberating work.
Exhibition Celebration: Friday, 11 September 2015, 6:00–9:00 PM
Open to the Public; No RSVP required
Testing Testing and its accompanying programs are made possible by the generous support of The John and Mary P. Redwine Charitable Trust, James Keith (JK) Brown and Eric Diefenbach, The Seymour and Carol Levin Foundation, WUNC 91.5 – North Carolina Public Radio, and Zog’s Art Bar.
Images, top row, L to R: José Bedia, Cuban, born 1959: Piango Piango Llega Lejos (Step by Step, We Arrive Very Far), 2000; acrylic stain and oil pastel on canvas. Ackland Fund, 2001.2. © 2000 Jose Bedia.
Barkley Hendricks, American, born 1945: New London Niggah / Big Chuck (Charles Harvey), 1975; oil and acrylic on linen canvas. Ackland Fund, 2008.6. © 1975 Barkley L. Hendricks.
Ken Price, American, 1935-2012: The Squeeze, 1995; ceramic and acrylic. Gift of Linda and Donald Schlenger, 2005.9. © 1995 Ken Price.
Images, bottom row, L to R: Hung Liu, American, born in China, born 1948: Peaches, 2002; oil on canvas. Ackland Fund, 2002.7. © 2002 Hung Liu.
Richard Nonas, American, born 1936: Points North (for John and Irma Honigmann), 1980; steel. Gift of the Artist, 90.99.
Tony Oursler, American, born 1957: Eye in the Sky 1997, 1997; mixed-media video installation: Sony projector, DVD, DVD player, 18″ fiberglass sphere, acrylic paint, tripod light stand. Ackland Fund, 2000.11a-b. © 1997 Metro Pictures.