The Human Touch
The Human Touch: Selections from the RBC Wealth Management Art Collection, a collection of artworks devoted to the human figure, will be on exhibit at the Yakima Valley Museum beginning May 1, 2009. This eclectic group of contemporary works features artists such as Roy Lichtenstein, Viola Frey, Chuck Close, Jim Dine, Hung Liu, and Roland Fischer. The Human Touch will be on exhibit in the museum's special exhibition gallery through August 31, 2009
The artists represented in this exhibit include Frank Big Bear, whose colorful drawings chronicle the Native American Experience; Chuck Close, whose autographic work is almost exclusively devoted to portraiture; Roy Lichtenstein, well-known for his cartoon-inspired images; Salomón Huerta, whose artwork in this exhibit illustrates the back of a human subject, hiding all identifying features of the face; and many others.
Since the early 1990s, RBC Wealth Management has collected and presented art that reflects our society. Don McNeil, curator of the collection, states that the reason RBC Wealth Management "features the human figure in its art collection" is "because it believes that this age-old need to understand the human condition is still vital and that the human form remains its most direct manifestation." The corporate collection, which is displayed at the firm's headquarters in Minneapolis, has grown to more than 400 pieces. Approximately 40 of those works comprise the art exhibit on tour, The Human Touch, which is visiting cities across the country, including Yakima.
The Yakima Valley Museum created the special exhibit gallery in 1995 to accommodate an active schedule of changing exhibitions. Now capable of housing up to three temporary exhibits, the Sundquist and Gilbert Family Galleries have housed an array of exhibits from Rodin sculptures to Mexican masks. Because of the size of this exhibition, The Human Touch will utilize all three sections of the gallery.
What's Going On Here? Looking at contemporary art. In an informal lecture to be held Sunday, June 7 at 1:00 p.m. at the Yakima Valley Museum, Andrew Granitto, curator and art historian, will explore the works of The Human Touch: Selections from the RBC Wealth Management Art Collection, investigate their precedents and influences, and muse on their meanings at this time in history, the dawn of the 21st Century. The artist's eye provides a unique view of the world, and the work of the artist documents that viewâ€”sometimes obvious, sometimes cryptic, always personal. The contemporary works from the RBC Wealth Management Art Collection that have been assembled in the exhibit The Human Touch combine to form an image of our human society at the turn of the 21st Century—the end of one era and the beginning of another—as seen through the artist's eye.
Analyzing and interpreting art "in its own time,"
without the clarity of hindsight afforded by years
of consideration, is tricky business. But it is also an
exciting exercise in independent thought—in many
ways "the jury is still out," and the historical and
artistic significance of these recent artworks is yet
open to interpretation.