Bid Adios to Frida today at the Arkansas Arts Center

Nickolas Muray, American (Szeged, Hungary, 1892 – 1965, New York, New York), Frida Kahlo on White Bench, New York (2nd Edition), 1939, color carbon print, 19 x 14 ½ inches. Courtesy of Throckmorton Fine Art, New York, New York.

Today (April 14) is the final day to visit the Arkansas Arts Center to have the rare opportunity to see one of Mexico’s greatest painters captured by some of the 20th century’s most important photographers.

Photographing Frida: Portraits of Frida Kahlo features 65 images of Kahlo as art and artist. The photographs document Kahlo’s life as seen by the greatest photographers of the time – Lola and Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Imogen Cunningham, Emmy Lou Packard, Graciela Iturbide, Nickolas Muray, and Edward Weston, among others. From casual snapshots to intimate family photographs to artfully posed studio portraits, viewers will see the full spectrum of Kahlo’s life, from self-assured adolescent, to influential artist, fashion icon and passionate lover, as she takes on a mythic presence in our collective imagination.

In the hands of photojournalists, friends and artists, the camera allowed Kahlo to explore her own image and identity, document her marriage to the great muralist Diego Rivera, express her strong political views, and artfully reveal her life-long struggle to overcome her physical challenges. In the process, she ultimately defined the principal subject of her own art – herself.

Photographing Frida is an opportunity to see Frida Kahlo as you’ve never seen her before,” Chief Curator Brian J. Lang said. “These images defined not only the way the world saw her – and continues to see her – but how she saw and depicted herself through her own work.”

Frida Kahlo was born in Coyoacán, Mexico City, Mexico in 1907. Her father, Guillermo Kahlo, was a photographer, and often photographed the young Frida. Through her father’s portraits, she became acquainted with the power of her own image.

In 1929, Kahlo married muralist Diego Rivera. Throughout their tumultuous marriage, the couple was often photographed together, both in Mexico and in the United States. Rivera was a major presence, both in Kahlo’s life and in the photographs that document their life. As they traveled through Mexico and the United States, “Frida and Diego” – as they were affectionately known – became a source of fascination and intrigue for the paparazzi: Kahlo, stunning in her Tehuana dresses, beribboned hair and beaded jewelry, accompanied her famous muralist husband. Photos of their second wedding (the couple divorced in 1939, only to remarry a year later) in California were captured by American press photographers.

The exhibition reveals Kahlo’s fascination with fashion – as self-expression, political expression, and a means for concealing her physical disabilities. She was often photographed wearing traditional Mexican clothing – Tehuana dresses, huipils and rebozos, and beaded jewelry. Under the voluminous skirts and flowing dresses, she was able to hide the injuries that had affected her since youth. The pre-Hispanic clothing she was so fond of allowed her to express her belief inmexicanidad – the nationalist movement that found its inspiration in pre-Columbian Mexico after the end of the Mexican Revolution.

Kahlo continued to be photographed until her death in 1954. To each photographer she encountered, she became something new – ever present and continually beguiling – but made different through their lens. In the process, she herself became a work of art.

Photographing Frida features images by Lola Álvarez Bravo, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Florence Arquin, Lucienne Bloch, Imogen Cunningham, Gisèle Freund, Hector Garcia, Juan Guzman, Graciela Iturbide, Peter Juley, Guillermo Kahlo, Bernice Kolko, Leo Matiz, Nickolas Muray, Emmy Lou Packard, Victor Reyes, Bernard Silberstein, Edward Weston and Guillermo Zamora. A fully-illustrated catalogue, Mirror, Mirror: Portraits of Frida Kahlo, featuring an essay by Salomon Grimberg, a noted authority on Latin American art, accompanies the exhibition.

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CALS Butler Center’s The Galleries at Library Square and AETN present “State of the Art” film premiere

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Join CALS and AETN for the Arkansas premiere of a one-hour documentary by Brent and Craig Renaud that captures the personal stories of seven diverse artists who are redefining the American aesthetic.

The screening is tonight (April 13) at 8pm at the CALS Ron Robinson Theater.

These artists were a part of “State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now”, a groundbreaking exhibition at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville. To create this exhibition, the curatorial team crisscrossed the nation to find extraordinary contemporary art happening in unexpected places. Be one of the first to experience this powerful story of artists working across our country, including here in Arkansas, prior to its debut on PBS nationally on April 26.

This event is FREE and open to the public. Doors open at 7:00pm with general admission seating on a first come, first served basis.

Presented by The Galleries at Library Square and AETN/PBS.

Dog Days of Science this Saturday at the Museum of Disvoery

The Museum of Discovery has gone to the dogs…at least for one day! Join us this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for “Dog Days of Science”.
Visitors can:
The museum does ask that guests leave their dogs at home as non-service animals and non event-featured dogs are not permitted inside the museum. Dog Days of Science is included in regular museum admission or free for members. Purchase your tickets at the door or online . Become a museum member and receive free admission to the Museum of Discovery and science museums across the country for one year! Join today!

2nd Friday Art Night – Old State House Museum offers a Cheese Dip Social, craft beer, and The Salty Dogs

Join the Old State House Museum on Friday, April 12, from 5 – 8 pm​, and enjoy a true taste of Arkansas at their Cheese Dip Social, featuring dips from local Central Arkansas restaurants, along with local craft beer from Core Brewing!

While you’re sampling the cheese dip and local brew, enjoy the honky-tonk country sounds of The Salty Dogs, another Arkansas favorite.

2nd Friday Art Night – Historic Arkansas Museum features 49th annual Mid-Southern Watercolorists Juried Exhibition

Tonight (April 12), Historic Arkansas Museum marks 2nd Friday Art Night with more art, music, and beer!
Opening reception for the 49th Annual Mid-Southern Watercolorists Juried Exhibition with live music by Charlotte Taylor and #ArkansasMade beer from Lost 40 Brewing

The 49th Annual Mid-Southern Watercolorists Juried Exhibition showcases the wide range of techniques and approaches now available to artists working in water-based media.

Out of 159 paintings submitted from 12 states and Puerto Rico, juror Michael Bailey selected only 33 exceptional pieces.  Artists include Daven Anderson, David Belling, Matthew Bird, Selma Blackburn, Catherine Caldwell, Judi Coffee, Marie Echols, L. S. Eldridge, B. Jeannie Fry, Susan Gibson, Virginia Haines, Lance Hunter, Gary Johnson, Cheryl Kellar, Ronald Kinkaid, Shirley Kleppe, Jeannie Knod-Edwards, Sandra Marson, Glenda McCune, Monika Pate, Charlotte Rierson, Carol Roberts, Maureen Rousseau, Cynthia Schanink, Gary Simmons, Cary Smith,k Eileen Stearman, Richard Stephens, Luanne Stone, Donna Twyford, Kathryn Wedge, Beth Woessner, and Valdoris Wright.
A brief awards ceremony will be held at 5:30 pm in Ottenheimer Theater during 2nd Friday Art Night. This exhibit will be on view in Trinity Gallery through July 7, 2019.

This weekend’s ASO soloist, Gareth Johnson, will be at Mosaic Templars Cultural Center this evening

Gareth Johnson, violinThis Thursday (APR 11) from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., Beethoven & Blue Jeans violin soloist Gareth Johnson will speak and give a short performance at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center on West Ninth Street in Downtown Little Rock.

This event is free-to-the-public and will include light refreshments.

Guests will have a chance to mix and mingle with Mr. Johnson and other attendees in the spaces of the MTCC Museum floor, as well as a Q&A with Mr. Johnson and representatives from the Museum.

The Mosaic Templars Cultural Center (MTCC) was founded as the Mosaic Templars of America Center for African American Culture and Business Enterprise under Act 1176 of 2001. MTCC was created as a museum of the Department of Arkansas Heritage and it honors the story of the Mosaic Templars of America and all of Arkansas’s African American history.

Tartan Day, celebrate all things Scottish, visit the Brownlee House at HAM

Photo by Larry Pennington

Today is Tartan Day, designated to celebrate the contributions of Scots everywhere.

One of Little Rock’s oldest structures, the Brownlee House was built by a Scotsman.  The Brownlee House is one of the restored structures at Historic Arkansas Museum.

Robert Brownlee built this Federal style brick house in the late 1840s for his brother and sister-in-law. A Scottish stonemason, Brownlee came to Little Rock in 1837 to help build the State House (now the Old State House Museum). He pursued a number of careers before leaving for California in the 1849 Gold Rush. From the late 1840s through 1852, the home’s residents were James and Isabelle Brownlee and Tabby, a woman enslaved by James Brownlee.

Brownlee had the wooden mantels in the parlor and bedroom marbleized, a popular decorative art of the time. The home’s furnishings reflect the mid-19th century.

This house is a project of The National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the State of Arkansas.

Historic Arkansas Museum is open seven days a week.  The galleries are free, but the tours of the historic structures have a nominal fee.  It is an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage.