8038 - Newly reinstalled galleries featuring 28 Modern artists open at Museum of Fine Arts Boston

Georgia O'Keeffe (American, 1887–1986), Deer's Skull with Pedernal, 1936. Oil on canvas. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Gift of the William H. Lane Foundation © 2010 Georgia O'Keeffe Museum / Artist Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. A series of new installations on the third floor of the Art of the Americas Wing at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, explores the notion of “Making Modern” in the 20th century. From Frida Kahlo to Jackson Pollock, Modern artists in the Americas were influenced by a variety of teachers, colleagues and friends. Starting with diverse sources of inspiration, they took their art in dramatic new directions. Each gallery in the installation represents a moment—from Mexico City to New York to Boston—that illustrates the evolution of Modern art in North America. Featuring new acquisitions, rarely seen loans, and masterpieces from the MFA’s collection, the installations provide a fresh perspective on Modern artists working in the 20th century.

Kahlo and Her Circle (Robert and Jane Burke Gallery) displays the work of Frida Kahlo and her circle of family and friends in Mexico City. Anchored by the MFA's recently acquired and newly conserved Dos Mujeres (1928) by Kahlo, the installation includes photographs by Tina Modotti, Edward Weston and Imogen Cunningham, lithographs by Diego Rivera, and recently acquired archival material related to the artists.

Pollock/Picasso (Saundra B. and William H. Lane Galleries) contrasts two titans of Modern art. Side-by-side groupings of paintings, sculpture and works on paper explore Pollock's engagement with Picasso, and how the younger artist moved away from representation into abstraction during the 1930s and '40s.

The central gallery, The Lane Collection: O'Keeffe, Sheeler, Dove, represents five American artists from photographer Alfred Stieglitz's circle—Georgia O'Keeffe, Charles Sheeler, Arthur Dove, Marsden Hartley and Stuart Davis—who knew and were influenced by each other, and were actively collected by William H. Lane and his wife Saundra. Works by each artist are grouped separately, exploring their artistic identity.

Beckmann in America (Saundra B. and William H. Lane Galleries) highlights the influence of German-born artists Max Beckmann and Karl Zerbe. After fleeing Europe, both immigrated to the US and had a lasting impact on American artists. The gallery explores the work of Beckmann and Zerbe, as well as their students, who established Boston Expressionism as a major style of painting.

Hofmann and the Next Generation (Melvin Blake and Frank Purnell Gallery) explores the impact of pedagogy on mid-century abstract artists. Hans Hofmann (American, born in Germany), an abstract expressionist and prominent teacher, trained hundreds of students in his distinctive technique and then inspired this new generation to develop their own voice. The gallery features works by Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, Helen Frankenthaler, David Smith and Peter Voulkos.