arts, What's On


1 May 2018: In an international exclusive, the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) presents a major exhibition of modern and contemporary masterworks from New York’s iconic Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in the world-premiere exhibition MoMA at NGV: 130 Years of Modern and Contemporary Art, opening 9 June 2018 at NGV International in Melbourne.

Co-organised by the NGV and MoMA, the exhibition features more than 200 works – many of which have never been seen in Australia – from a line-up of seminal nineteenth and twentieth-century artists, including Vincent van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, Salvador Dalí, Frida Kahlo, Georgia O’Keeffe, Edward Hopper, Louise Bourgeois, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Diane Arbus, Agnes Martin and Andy Warhol. Bringing the exhibition up to the present are works by many significant twenty-first century artists including Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman, Olafur Eliasson, Andreas Gursky, El Anatsui, Rineke Dijkstra, Kara Walker, Mona Hatoum and Camille Henrot.

MoMA at NGV is the largest instalment of the Melbourne Winter Masterpieces exhibition series to date, for the first time encompassing the entire ground floor of NGV International. Showcasing MoMA’s multi-disciplinary approach to collecting and the breadth of its collection, the exhibition display features works drawn from the Museum’s six curatorial departments: Architecture and Design, Drawings and Prints, Film, Media and Performance Art, Painting and Sculpture, and Photography.

MoMA at NGV will explore the emergence and development of major art movements, and represent more than 130 years of radical artistic innovation. The exhibition will also reflect the wider technological, social and political developments that transformed society during this period, from late nineteenth century urban and industrial transformation, through to the digital and global present. In recognition of both MoMA and NGV’s long-standing dedication to the study and presentation of architecture and design, the exhibition explores the deep-seated connections between twentieth-century art and design practice, with a particular focus on developments that shaped Europe in the 1920s and ’30s and the globalised world of the 1960s and ’70s.

Unfolding across eight loosely chronological thematic sections, the exhibition opens with ‘Arcadia and Metropolis’, examining how artists at the dawn of the 20th century responded to the rise of cities. ‘The Machinery of the Modern World’ highlights the simultaneity of foundational avant-garde movements (Futurism, Cubism, Orphism, Dada) and references MoMA’s 1934 Machine Art exhibition, while ‘A New Unity’ presents the cross-media manifestations of the Russian avant-garde, de Stijl, the Bauhaus and Joaquín Torres-Garcia’s School of the South. In ‘Inner and Outer Worlds’, iconic Surrealist paintings are seen alongside contemporaneous works that negotiate the relationship between interior and exterior landscapes. ‘Art as Action’ highlights key examples of Abstract Expressionism and expands to include other forms of kineticism in the 1950s. The exhibition’s largest section, ‘Things as They Are’, encompasses the varied production of the 1960s and ’70s, from Pop art to Minimalism and Post-Minimalism, followed by ‘Immense Encyclopedia’, focusing on gestures of appropriation and reflections of identity from the 1980s and ’90s. The last section of the exhibition, ‘Flight Patterns’, considers contemporary ideas of movement, migration, and globalisation. Installation and performance works (Olafur Eliasson’s Ventilator, Simone Forti’s Huddle, and Roman Ondak’s Measuring the Universe) will also run throughout the course of the exhibition.

The Hon. Premier Daniel Andrews said: ‘Picasso, Van Gogh and Matisse: only in Melbourne will you see this roll call of history’s most iconic art figures – it will be an experience not to be missed. MoMA is one of the most prestigious modern art galleries in the world and its partnership with the NGV is testament to Victoria’s reputation as an international cultural destination.’

Tony Ellwood, Director, NGV said: ‘This exciting exhibition will showcase an unparalleled collection of modern and contemporary art and design. We are delighted to be working with MoMA to bring such an extraordinary and diverse selection of works to Melbourne. Our visitors will be able to experience first-hand the momentous change and creativity in the development of modern art, and consequently appreciate contemporary art and design with greater understanding.’

Glenn D. Lowry, Director, MoMA said: ‘MoMA’s mission is to share our story of modern and contemporary art with the widest possible audience, to encourage the understanding and enjoyment of the art of our time. We are thrilled to have this opportunity to share these important works from nearly every area of our collection with the NGV and the many visitors who will take advantage of this rare opportunity.’

MoMA at NGV will be on display at NGV International from 9 June 2018 – 7 October 2018. Tickets and information are available via the NGV website: NGV.MELBOURNE

Member $23 | Adult $28 | Concession $24.50 | Child (5–15 years) $10 | Family (2 adults + 3 children) $65.

In celebration of this major exhibition, all MoMA Members receive free exhibition entry to MoMA at NGV, and NGV Members receive free admission to The Museum of Modern Art in New York for the duration of the exhibition.

Organised by The Museum of Modern Art, New York, in partnership with the National Gallery of Victoria. Presented by Creative Victoria.

When: until 7 October 2018
Where: NGV
More information: check their website.