An Archaeology of Advertising: Hank Willis Thomas opens “Unbranded” at the Block [Video]

Over 350 guests joined artist Hank Willis Thomas at the Block Museum on April 14, 2018 for a talk on his politically charged work and the Block Museum exhibition Hank Willis Thomas: Unbranded. The exhibition brings together selections from two bodies of work: Unbranded: Reflections in Black by Corporate America 1968-2008 and Unbranded: A Century of White […]

Jen Bervin Talks Poetry, Material, and Metaphor [Video]

Artist and writer Jen Bervin embraces subjects as wide-ranging as the Mississippi River, Emily Dickinson’s poetry, and the history of silk, weaving, and nanotechnology. On February 21, 2018  the artist, Jeanne Dunning, Art Theory & Practice professor, and Susy Bielak, Susan and Stephen Wilson Associate Director of Engagement/Curator of Public Practice, sat down for a conversation about Bervin’s work. In […]

Collection Spotlight: Patti Smith, Robert Mapplethorpe

Title: Patti Smith Artist: Robert Mapplethorpe (1946–1989) Nationality: American Date: 1986 Medium: Gelatin Silver print Credit: Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, gift of Jeffrey H. Loria, 2015.7.3   Singer and poet Patti Smith was one of Robert Mapplethorpe’s earliest and most frequent photographic subjects, and over two decades he took many photographs of her. They […]

Ritual & Revolution: Janet Dees and Grace Deveney on Carrie Mae Weems [Audio]

Janet Dees, Steven and Lisa Munster Tananbaum Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art and Grace Deveney, Curatorial Assistant, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, and Northwestern Ph.D. Candidate in Art History discussed Weems’s art and her exploration of universal human experiences through the black subject. From Opening Remarks by Susy Bielak, Block Museum Curator of Public […]

Block Museum and University Libraries collaborate on installation of Félix González-Torres work

In fall of 2016 the Block Museum presented Keep the Shadow, Ere the Substance Fade: Mourning during the AIDS Crisis, an exhibition of art and objects which spoke to themes of bereavement and materiality.  The exhibition included artwork and relics from Northwestern University Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections, the Block Museum collection, Chicago’s […]

Collection Spotlight: Night Shift 3 (Gece Vardlyasi 3), Vahap Avşar

Artist: Vahap Avşar, Turkish, born 1965 Title: Night Shift 3 (Gece Vardlyasi 3) Date: Negative 1988; printed 2015 Medium: Chromogenic print Edition: 1/3 Dimensions: 144 x 112 cm Credit line:  Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, Gift of Melih and Zeynep Keyman, 2015.4. (Image courtesy of the artist.) Vahap Avşar’s Night Shift […]