Serenity and Revolution

Artists today struggle with the question of what kind of art to make in light of contemporary issues. A century ago, artists faced similar questions. This exhibition looks at how artists negotiated the extraordinary changes and tragedies of the early 20th century: the mass casualties in the First World War, economic despair because of worldwide depressions, colonized people struggling for freedom, and the rise of communism, fascism, and totalitarian dictatorships. Some artists looked to the serenity offered by beauty, academic art of the previous century, Greek mythology, or to the woman as a muse and object of longing. Others embraced outright political causes and protest. Still others focused on newfangled consumer distractions, like smoking.

This exhibition draws exclusively from the Museum’s collection and includes work by Eileen Agar, Gunther Gerzso, Käthe Kollwitz, Wifredo Lam, Henri Matisse, Joan Miró, José Clemente Orozco, Carlos Orozco Romero, Pablo Picasso, and Rufino Tamayo.

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