New Points of Entry
An Art Spectacular
Through August 17, 2003
to love the free audio tours of Panopticon
," says Curator of
Russell. When the exhibition opened, visitors could choose from three audio
tours led by Carnegie Museum of Art Director Richard Armstrong; Chief
Curator and Curator of Decorative Arts Sarah Nichols; and the Art Museum’s
mascot, Art Cat, whose remarks were directed primarily to children. “The tours help visitors select which
works of art to focus on from among the 458 on display and provide insights
from three different perspectives,” explains Russell.
Since the exhibition
opened, the museum has added two new audio tours that enable visitors to
see the art in different ways. In one tour, the museum staff comment on
works that have excited interest among visitors or provoked lots of
questions. These works range in media, subject, and time period, and
include pieces from Frans Hals' Pieter
van der Morsch, 1616, to Augustus St. Gauden’s popular Victory
About Edwin Austin Abbey’s painting, The Penance of Eleanor,
Ducess of Gloucter, 1900, Karla Boos,
an actress and the artistic director of Quantum Theatre in Pittsburgh,
says, “Abbey sets a perfect stagepictures, an he’s gotten it right out of
the text of Shakespeare, to create this moment between Eleanor and Henry;
that is, this look between them. And he directs every part of our attention
to that look.”
The second tour
blends history and background on the works of art with personal comments
from artists and popular Pittsburgh personalities who are familiar with the
artist or the subject being featured.
"Some of the pairings are obvious," says Russell, "such
as artist Philip Pearlstein talking about his own painting, Two Models, (1980), or Joseph
Koerner sharing his insights into a painting by his father Henry Koerner, It
Isn't the Heat, It's the Humidity, (1947-1948)."
between artworks and commentators are less obvious, such as Karla Boos,
director of Pittsburgh’s Quantum Theatre, talking about Edwin Austin
Abbey's Penance of Eleanor, 1900;
composer and musician David Stock analyzing Stuart Davis' Composition Concrete, 1957; and
filmmaker Rick Sebak discussing John Kane's Larimer Avenue Bridge, 1932.
"These people have different points
of entry into the artworks," says Russell. "By listening to what they have to
say, visitors may find new ways to think about the art. The most consistent
request we’ve had from visitors is for more audio information on works of
art. With the addition of these new tours, 40 additional works of art have
been addressed. Visitors can follow the tours as they’ve been organized, or
mix and match various tours, listening to as many or as few as they like in
Architectural Duo Makes Their Debut
New Curators at Heinz Architectural Center
With their widely divergent backgrounds, Tracy Myers and
Raymund Ryan, the two new curators at the Heinz Architectural Center, make
a complementary team. Myers, who
first came to the center as assistant and then associate curator in 1997,
brings both a knowledge of the business world and years of museum
experience, along with an understanding of community issues, to her
position as curator. Ryan, who
joined the museum earlier this year, was a practicing architect as well as
a scholar and critic.
“Although Ray and I have similar interests, we have different
strengths, and this will create a wonderful synergy,” explains Myers. “We will do our own exhibitions, but will
also collaborate on shows. In
general, I think each of us can act as a sort of prism or filter through
which to refine and elaborate our ideas.”
In recent years, Myers organized Designing Oakland,
Aluminum in Contemporary Architecture, and, with Joseph Rosa, Inside
Out: New Perspectives on the Heinz Architectural Center¹s Collection.
In addition, she was the local curator for exhibitions organized by other
institutions, including the recent Out of the Ordinary: The Architecture
and Design of Robert Venturi, Denise Scott Brown and Associates and The
Pritzker Architecture Prize1979-1999.
Prior to joining Carnegie Museum of Art, Myers was special assistant
to the assistant director for Public Programs at the Cooper-Hewitt,
National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, New York. She also has
been a panelist and reviewer for The National Endowment for the Humanities.
Since moving to Pittsburgh from New York, Myers has been
active in a number of public service activities and is a member of the
Board of Directors of the South Side Local Development Company and the
Board of Regents, Foundation for Architecture, AIA Pittsburgh. She was a
member of the project committee for the Hill District Public Art Project,
in addition to being involved with several community-based organizations in
“My involvement in the community is a matter of personal
interest,” Myers says, “but it is also important for the department to have
a presence in the public realm, so that we can understand our community
and, conversely, so that people here can appreciate the value and
importance of this city’s remarkable architectural environment.”
Myers has a Masters Degree in Art History from Hunter
College of The City University of New York and is a Ph.D. candidate in Art
History at the University of Delaware.
She served as adjunct lecturer at both institutions.
Ryan, born and raised in Ireland, holds a Masters Degree
in Architecture from Yale University.
He worked in L.A. between 1987 and 1990 for the Canadian archictect
Arthur Erickson. Between 1990 and
1992, Ryan was co-director of the Urban Design Group, National Building
Agency, Dublin, and from 1993 to the present, was studio lecturer in the
School of Architecture, University College Dublin. In 2002, he was the
Irish Commissioner for both the 2000 and 2002 Venice Architecture Biennale.
Widely published, Ryan is a contributing editor for Blueprint
(London), contributor to The Architectural Review (London), and, in
addition, he has published articles in many magazines including Architectural
Record (New York), Architecture (Washington/New York), A+U
(Tokyo), Domus (Milan), Irish Architect (Dublin), l’Arch+
(Brussels), LA Architecture, Metropolis (New York), Monument
(Sydney), tate magazine (London), 10+1 (Tokyo), and World
Architecture (London). Ryan is co-author of Building Tate Modern
(Tate Publishing, 2000) and author of Cool Construction (Thames
& Hudson, 2001). He also has contributed the keynote essay to an
upcoming monograph on the work of New York artist Kent Floeter [Building
Flatness, New York Stephen David Editions].
“We hope to bring the best of world architecture here to
Pittsburgh, and to act as a gallery and laboratory for Pittsburgh
architecture itself,” says Ryan.