Cranbrook Art Museum's delightful mounting of the Walker's exhibition "Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia" is up until October 9. You absolutely have to go. If you have even the most passing interest in the more radical leanings of the 1960s counterculture, visit! At least once. I spent a few hours there the other week, and was blown away by its scope. I can't wait to return.
Sometimes, taking a wider view of art history can create a more expansive curatorial vision. Previously the senior curator of Design, Research, and Publishing, and later the curator of Architecture and Design at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Andrew Blauvelt developed a wider take on which elements of cultural production contribute to art movements. He brought this perspective to Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia, an exhibition that was five years in-the-making before it expanded into the Walker’s 14,000 square-foot floor plan in 2015. Hippie Modernism (with the exception of a few artworks) is now at the Cranbrook Art Museum, following on Blauvelt’s heels in his new appointment as the director of the museum. The exhibition offers a fascinating look at the merging of hippie values with a modern design sensibility and how it sparked unique cultural production far outside the highly commoditized art market inflamed by Pop Art.
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The words “hippie” and “modernism” may seem to be opposing upon first glance. The anti-establishment rhetoric espoused by the late 1960s hippies, known for their agrarian practices, flowy outfits, mantras of peace and love and a communal lifestyle, do not exactly scream “modern.” However, in their adaptive and innovative dealings with the era’s new technology and media, these hippies found creative approaches for societal betterment that can be seen in many commonly accepted practices today. The Cranbrook Art Museum’s new exhibit, Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia, which is open now through October 9th, explores this tension and eventual reconciliation between what exactly makes the hippie so modern in a 21st-century lens. It is currently on its second stop on its three-city national tour, starting at the Walker Art Center and ending at the University of California Berkeley.
If you lack the tolerance for Hollywood blockbusters, here’s a tip to beat the heat in Detroit this summer: Take in “CC5 Hendrixwar/Cosmococa Programa-in-Progress,” the full-gallery installation of a work by Hélio Oiticica and Neville D’Almeida. Tucked away in the furthest reaches of “Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia” at Cranbrook Art Museum, the installation comes complete with gratifying tunes, soothing visual projections and hammocks.
For Andrew Blauvelt, the June 18 opening of “Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia” at the Cranbrook Art Museum represents both a scholarly interest and a chance to bring to life a piece of Cranbrook’s own history.
BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MICH.- The acclaimed exhibition Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia travels to Cranbrook Art Museum this June, bringing an examination of the intersections of art, architecture and design of the counterculture of the 1960s and early 1970s. The exhibition comes to Cranbrook from the Walker Art Center, where it enjoyed a successful run from October 24, 2015 through February 28, 2016. It was curated by Andrew Blauvelt, former Senior Curator of Research, Design and Publishing at the Walker who left that position to become Director of Cranbrook Art Museum in August of 2015. Cranbrook is the second of only three stops on the show’s national tour.
"Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia" is an exhibit opening Saturday at Cranbrook Art Museum. It looks into the unexpected ways that seemingly disparate movements of the '60s and '70s influenced one another in art, architecture and design. The museum's director, Adam Blauvelt, curated the exhibit and talks about what to expect.
BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MICH., April 27, 2016 – The acclaimed exhibition Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia travels to Cranbrook Art Museum this June, bringing an examination of the intersections of art, architecture and design of the counterculture of the 1960s and early 1970s.
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In 1965, four artists bought seven acres in southeastern Colorado, intending to make live-in works of art. Their communal project came to be known as Drop City, where residents lived in zonohedron domes of their own creation, sometimes constructed of automobile roofs and other scavenged materials. One dome, made of a fluorescent-painted lattice filled in […]
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