"Platter" (detail) 1987 by Robert Sperry


Abstraction and the Dreaming: Aboriginal Paintings from Australia's Western Desert (1971-Present)
Sept. 12 - December 12, 2015
                                                                                                                                To view a virtual tour of this exhibition, click here.

Shorty Lungkarta Tjungurrayi
Classic Pintupi Water Dreaming, ca. August 1972
synthetic polymer/powder paint on composition board
Collection of L. John and Barbara Wilkerson
© estate of the artist licensed by Aboriginal Artists
Agency Ltd

Abstraction and the Dreaming includes more than fifty artworks by 34 artists spanning the emergence of painting at an Aboriginal settlement called Papunya in the early 1970s to the present day. The early "Papunya boards" created in 1971-1972 are descendants of mark-making that dates to well over one hundred centuries ago and are the beginning of the Western Desert art movement. With fewer than 600 in existence, the "Papunya boards" have a singular status within the history of Australian Aboriginal art. Because some of these designs were associated with sacred male-only ceremonies, women were not allowed to participate in art-making.

Over time, Papunya artists moved away from the use of symbols toward greater abstraction. The scale of artworks on canvas grew and women began painting, using a markedly more gestural and vibrant style than their male counterparts. Today, these works are interpreted and experienced as contemporary abstract paintings, stimulating a rich dialogue about indigenous art in the contemporary art world.

Works for this exhibition have been loaned from four significant collections: John and Barbara Wilkerson, New York, NY (John is an alumni of Utah State University); Dennis and Debra Scholl, Miami, FL; Julie Harvey, Sun Valley, ID; and Stephen Luczo, San Francisco, CA.
Guest Curated by Margo Smith, Ph.D., director and curator of Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection at the University of Virginia. This exhibition is supported in part by the Tanner Trust of Utah State University.

Eileen Napaltjarri
Anatjari Tjakamarra
Freddy West Tjakamarra
John Kipara Tjakamarra
Long Jack Phillipus Tjakamarra
Kaapa Mbitjana Tjampitjinpa
Kenny Williams Tjampitjinpa
Old Walter Tjampitjinpa
Ronnie Tjampitjinpa
George Tjangala
Uta Uta Tjangala
John Scobie Tjapanangka
Tim Payungka Tjapangarti
Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri
Billy Stockman Tjapaltjarri
Clifford Possum Tjapaltjarri
Mick Namarari Tjapaltjarri

Tommy Lowry Tjapaltjarri
Charlie Tarawa (Tjaruru) Tjungurrayi
Kingsley Tjungurrayi
Shorty Lungkarta Tjungurrayi
Willy Tjungurrayi
Yala Yala Gibbs Tjungurrayi
Yumpululu Tjungurrayi
Johnny Warangkula Tjupurrula
Johnny Yungut Tjupurrula
Turkey Tolsen Tjupurrula
Doreen Reid Nakamarra
Eileen Napaltjarri
Walankura Napanangka
Makinta Napanangka
Ningura Napurrula
Naata Nungurrayi
Artist Unknown (Pintupi)

Transcendence: Abstraction & Symbolism in the American West
Sept. 1, 2015 - May 7, 2016
                                                                                                                 To view a virtual tour of this exhibition, click here.

Lee Mullican
The Ninnekah, 1951
oil on linen
Marie Eccles Caine Foundation Gift

Showcasing NEHMA's important collection of art from the American West after World War I through the present day, Transcendence: Abstraction and Symbolism in the American West includes over sixty works by artists spanning painting, photography, sculpture, works on paper, pottery, video, and mixed media. The exhibition surveys both American Indian and and non-native artists who employ abstraction and symbolism to convey their experiences and interpretations of the American West. Complementing Abstraction and the Dreaming, the exhibition explores how these artists utilize these conceptual processes to convey responses to place, spirituality, and cultural identity.

Many works in the exhibition have been acquired for the Museum through the generous support of the Marie Eccles Caine Foundation, Kathryn Caine Wanlass Foundation, Nora Eccles Treadwell Foundation, and David and Terry Peak.

Thomas Akawie
Emil Bisttram
Richard Bowman
Robert Brady
Harold Cohen
Edward Corbett
Werner Drewes
Larry Elsner
Gordon Onslow-Ford
Jean-Pierre Hébert
Patrick Hogan
Robert Boardman Howard
Robert Irwin
Raymond Jonson
Helmi Dagmar Juvonen
Adaline Kent
Karen Kunc
Mark Kuzio

Gaell Lindstrom
Robert McChesney
Don Martin
Julian and Maria Martinez
Timothy Moore
Lee Mullican
Fanny Nampeyo
Judy Natal
Maude Oakes
Wolfgang Paalen
Deborah Remington
David Shaner
Henrietta Shore
Don Suggs
Sibylle Szaggars Redford
Cady Wells
Takako Yamaguchi
Unknown Hopi Artist

On View in the Study Center
Small selections of printmaking, photography, and drawing are presented in the Study Center as independent mini-exhibitions. These exhibitions are shown in drawers to provide viewers an intimate experience.

New Acquisitions 2014
November 12, 2014 - Summer 2015

Hy Hirsch
Untitled (Net), ca. 1940
gelatin silverprint
Kathryn C. Wanlass Foundation Gift

Water Finds Its Way: Photographs from the NEHMA Permanent Collection

February 6 - Summer 2015

Robert Dawson
Spillway, Lake Berryessa, California, 1988
gelatin silverprint
Charter Member Endowment Purchase

Women, Woe, and the Wild: Woodcuts from the Permanent Collection
February 24 - Summer 2015

Marion Hyde
Woman, Rose and Tapestry, no date
Museum Permanent Collection

North American Indian Cultures

September 15, 2015 - February 2016

Conrad Buff
Catching Wild Horses, no date
Charter Member Endowment Purchase

Gray Areas: Graphite, Ink, and Charcoal Drawings from the Permanent Collection
September 24, 2015 - Spring 2016

Theodore M. Wassmer
The Odd Couple, 1985
ink on paper
Gift of Dolores Chase