This traveling exhibition and its accompanying publications provides the first comprehensive overview of Associated American Artists (1934-2000), the commercial enterprise best known as the publisher of prints (sold via mail-order catalogue) by Thomas Hart Benton, John Steuart Curry, and Grant Wood.
Join us for an opening reception on Thursday, September 17 at 5:30pm. Meet the curator and view the exhibition. Hor d’oeurves will be hosted and refreshments available for purchase.
The exhibition addresses not only AAA’s storied involvement in the popularity of American prints in the 1930s, but its ongoing promotion of American art over six decades. Through aggressive marketing of studio prints, ceramics, and textiles, and associations with corporate advertisers, AAA sought to bring “original” American art over the threshold of every American home. “From Studio to Doorstep—Wherever You Are,” the company described in a 1945 mail-order brochure. “No longer would the would-be possessor of a beautiful picture have to go to town and visit an art dealer; or still harder, hire somebody to do it for him. Quite the contrary! Every American post office [is] to be like a branch agency for the creations of the pick of American artists.”
A major catalogue distributed by Yale University Press containing essays by scholars in the fields of American painting, printmaking, textiles, ceramics, and interior design accompanies the exhibition. A free, illustrated index of AAA prints, textiles, color reproductions, and ceramics will be made accessible online as a searchable pdf.
Organized by the Beach Museum of Art, the exhibition of 136 objects from twenty-eight museums and private collections will travel to the Grey Art Gallery, New York University (April 19-July 9, 2016); the American Historical Textile History Museum, Lowell, Massachusetts (September-December, 2016); and the Syracuse University Art Galleries, New York (January 26-March 26, 2017).
The exhibition’s co-curators are Liz Seaton of the Beach Museum of Art and Jane Myers, former curator at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, Texas. Independent researcher Gail Windisch of Los Angeles is a third important contributor to the exhibition.
The Henry Luce Foundation provided major funding for the exhibition. In addition, Edward and Karen Seaton stepped forward to make funds available from the R.M. Seaton Endowment for Exhibitions. Additional support comes from the International Fine Print Dealers Association, Russell Clay Harvey and Patricia McGivern, and Candyce Russell.
We apologize for any inconvenience, but due to the intricate set-up involved with this exhibition the opening will be delayed until September 16, 2015. We hope you will join us at the opening reception on September 17 at 5:30p.m.