Fear No Art

Happy 4th!

Laura Gilpin (1891-1979), [American Flags] [Boeing, Wichita, Kansas], 1942-1943, gelatin silver print, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Bequest of the artist, P1979.121.49.

Laura Gilpin (1891-1979)
[American Flags] [Boeing, Wichita, Kansas], 1942-1943
Gelatin silver print
© 1979 Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas
Bequest of the artist,
P1979.121.49.

We're Getting Ready!

We're getting ready for Story1ime!.jpg
We're getting ready for Story1ime!.jpg

Be sure to join us for Hello Yellow Storytime next Wednesday.
We're working hard to get the awesome art projects ready for visitors to take home.

Don't forget to wear yellow!

Making (or Viewing) Art is a Good Thing

Recent posts from the folks at Good have offered some great ideas for contributing your talents to your neighbors and the world. This post, which urges folks to create or appreciate art, really hit close to home. Readers who don't consider themselves artistic (like me) can find lots of options and ideas to get involved with art by just scrolling through the poll offered at the bottom. How considerate of them for putting the suggestion to visit a museum or gallery at the top of the list! I'm heading up to galleries to look at this lovely work right now.

Alexander Stirling Calder (1870–1945)  An American Stoic, 1912,  Bronze

Alexander Stirling Calder (1870–1945)
An American Stoic, 1912
Bronze
2002.4

Inspired Art

Recently an area teacher borrowed materials from the Teaching Resource Center on artist Joseph Albers to help her students understand the effects different colors have on each other. Elizabeth was kind enough to share pictures of the recent art exhibition at Wedgwood Academy as well as photos of some of the artists and their work.

Wegwood Academy Artists.jpg

Wedgwood Academy Art Exhibition.jpg

Many thanks to Elizabeth Morand and her students for sharing their art and inspiring us all.

Holiday Travels

During the month of December in 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright made their historic first flight. Only 83 years later, again in December, the experimental airplane Voyager, piloted by Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager, completed the first non-stop, around-the-world flight without refueling and landed safely at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

More than anything else the sensation is one of perfect peace mingled with an excitement that strains every nerve to the utmost, if you can conceive of such a combination. ~Wilbur Wright

Laura Gilpin (1891-1979), [View of Mountain from Airplane]. 1920-1950, gelatin silver print, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Bequest of the artist.

Laura Gilpin (1891-1979), [View of Mountain from Airplane]. 1920-1950, gelatin silver print, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Bequest of the artist, P1979.102.39

Howard Cook (1901-1980), Airplane, 1931, wood engraving, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas.

Howard Cook (1901-1980), Airplane, 1931, wood engraving, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, 1985.271

Happy holiday travels. Enjoy the scenery!

Feels Like Fall

Eliot Porter, Apples on Tree After Frost, Tesque, New Mexico, November 21, 1966, dye imbibition print

Eliot Porter (1901-1990)
Apples on Tree After Frost, Tesuque, New Mexico, November 21, 1966
Dye imbibition print
© 1989 Eliot Porter
Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the artist
P1989.19.41

Eliot Porter, Sunset Behind Las Tres Virgenes Volcano, Near Mezquital, Baja, California, August 12, 1956, dye imbibition print

Eliot Porter (1901-1990)
Sunset Behind Las Tres Virgenes Volcano, Near Mezquital Baja, California, August 12, 1956
Dye imbibition print
© 1990 Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Bequest of Eliot Porter
P1990.58.7.10

Eliot Porter, Foxtail Grass, Lake City, Colorado, August 1957, dye imbibition print

Eliot Porter (1901-1990)
Foxtail Grass, Lake City, Colorado, August 1957
Dye imbibition print
© 1990 Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Bequest of Eliot Porter
P1990.58.4.3

Check out all of Eliot Porter's photographs for an in-depth look at one of the photography collections from our archives.

Thank You, Veterans

Many thanks to the millions of brave men and women who have served our country in times of war and peace, including those on our museum staff. We also thank the families who supported their loved ones during their service.

 The Soldier's Departure, 1887, chromolithograph

Louis Harlow (1850-1913), Farewell: The Soldier's Departure, 1887, chromolithograph, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, 2003.8.2

But the freedom that they fought for, and the country grand they wrought for,
Is their monument to-day, and for aye.
~Thomas Dunn English

Things We Did at the Museum This Summer

We listened to lots of stories...

Storytime visitors listened to 28 stories.jpg

Storytime visitors heard stories connected to 24 works of art in the museum this summer.

We had over 1800 Storytime visitors!.jpg

We had over 1800 Storytime visitors!

Congratulations to Isabella our Storytime Grand Prize Winner.jpg

Congratulations to Isabella, our Storytime Grand Prize winner! She won a copy of all 24 books read during Storytime.

We told our own stories...

Sharing the Past visitors from Bethesda Gardens at the Amon Carter_0.jpg

Residents from Bethesda Gardens enjoyed our Sharing the Past program on the second Thursday of each month. We have been known to sing and tell jokes too!

We were inspired by the Amon Carter’s collection to create our own art…

Crafting from the Collection program inspires creative thinking.jpg

Our program Crafting from the Collection program inspired creative thinkers.

Family programs offer lots of chances to make art.jpg

All of our family programs offered lots of chances to make art.

And to teach others to share new ideas…

Over 700 teachers developed techniques for using art as primary sources this summer.jpg

Over 700 teachers developed techniques for using art as a primary source this summer.

And to top it all off, we had a BIG PARTY!

Over 4500 of our good friends joined us for 50Fest, our 50th Anniversary Celebration.jpg

Over 4500 of our good friends joined us for 50Fest, our 50th Anniversary celebration!

There were cakes for voting on.jpg

There were cakes to vote for…

And cake for eating.jpg

…and cake for eating…

And hotdogs too.jpg

…and hot dogs too.

Dancing at 50Fest.jpg

We did some dancing...

Hula-hooping and bubble-blowing at 50Fest.jpg

…we hula hooped and blew bubbles…

We had fun with art.jpg

We had fun looking at art…

Making art at 50Fest.jpg

…and making our own art.

Brady Sloan-our tireless Public Programs Manager-makes everyone feel welcome at the Amon Carter.jpg

Brady Sloane, our tireless Public Programs Manager, made everyone feel welcome at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art.

The Allure of Paper: Conservation

As the paper conservator at the Amon Carter, I oversee the collection of works on paper---totaling nearly 10,000. Part of my job is to ensure that the works of art to be included in a show like The Allure of Paper are stable enough to be placed on exhibit. Once I receive the list of works the curator would like to include in a show, I spring into action. I examine each object closely, looking for problems like flaking paint, weak or torn hinges, tears, or any other problem that would make the piece unsafe to display.

For The Allure of Paper a few works needed conservation treatment: Edward Hopper’s untitled charcoal drawing, John Henry Hill’s small watercolor sketch Nevada Falls, John Abbot’s Cardinal Grosbeak, and Arthur Davies' Certosa Monastery. Most had minor issues that needed to be addressed before they could safely hang in the galleries for four months.

Conservator looking through microscope in the lab.
Using magnification enables me to examine a work closely, as well as make very subtle repairs.

Edward Hopper’s charcoal drawing had several small edge tears and creases, making it vulnerable to further damage. Because the drawing was executed on poor quality paper (newsprint), over time the paper had darkened. Its condition required that light levels be kept low, and it remains covered during non-public hours.

Edward Hopper's charcoal on paper Untitled (Captain Gardner K. Wonson House)
Edward Hopper (1882--1967), Untitled (Captain Gardner K. Wonson House), ca. 1923--28, charcoal on paper, 2004.31

Documentation photographs are taken before and after conservation treatment. Above is the before treatment photograph.

After examining the object, I write up a treatment proposal that the curator and I agree upon. For this piece I repaired the tears with wheat starch paste and thin Japanese paper strips. The repairs secure the tears, stopping them from getting larger.

Condition report for Edward Hopper's charcoal on paper
Treatment proposal for Edward Hopper’s charcoal drawing

Once I’m finished with treatment I write up a report detailing what I’ve done and what materials I used. Each object in our collection has a dedicated file where documentation is kept detailing its history.

In addition, for every piece on the exhibition list I make note of its exhibition history. Works of art on paper are vulnerable to overexposure to light and environmental conditions. To protect the art we limit the lifetime exhibition of a work on paper, keeping it off view in our vaults for years between shows to slow down its inevitable deterioration. We also limit the light levels used in the exhibition. Some works are so vulnerable that for the duration of the show we cover them with custom-fitted drapes to protect them when we are closed to the public.

Conservator lifting cover over Georgia O'Keeffe watercolor.
Georgia O’Keeffe's Light Coming on the Plains No. III (1917) is covered by its custom-fitted drape during non-public hours.

Post written by Jodie Utter, conservator of works on paper

Making an Exhibition Picture Perfect

The museum’s Installation Preparation Services (IPS) team, which includes Greg Bahr (Lead Preparator), Steve Price (Preparator), and Les Hofheinz (Carpenter/Asst. Preparator) care for, handle, prepare, and install all of the artwork on display at the Amon Carter. They were essential in the execution of our current special exhibition The Allure of Paper: Watercolors and Drawings from the Collection, playing multiple roles throughout the planning and installation process. Jim Belknap (Installation Manager) determined the budgetary needs for all materials needed for the exhibition, including paint, mats, and frames, and organized the work schedule for all IPS activities.

Works on paper are vulnerable to physical damage; they can be torn, folded, and smudged. IPS ensured that each drawing and watercolor was securely hinged with Japanese paper or mounted using archival photo corners to a mat support before they were matted and framed for display. (Learn more about matting and framing works of art on paper here.)

Months before the exhibition, I met with IPS to select mats and frames for each artwork. Greg and Steve provided invaluable input regarding the appropriate mat colors and sizing for all of the art objects. They also sized and cut all of the mats for virtually every artwork on display, while Les built most of the frames you’ll see in the exhibition.

Steve Price frames a watercolor for the exhibition.
Steve Price frames a watercolor for the exhibition.

Les Hofheinz cleans the glass of a newly framed object.
Les Hofheinz cleans the glass of a newly framed object.

Greg Bahr installs a watercolor in the special exhibition gallery.
Greg Bahr installs a watercolor in the special exhibition gallery.

As curators, we often comment that we have one of the most talented and gifted IPS teams we have ever worked with. Thanks to their tremendous efforts, The Allure of Paper was executed beautifully.

The Allure of Paper: Watercolors and Drawings from the Collection is now open! Drop by the museum anytime we're open to see these works firsthand.

Post written by Shirley Reece-Hughes, assistant curator of paintings and sculpture