Press releases

Dana Schutz’s Inventive, Contemporary Paintings on View at the DAM

10-year survey, Dana Schutz: If the Face Had Wheels, opens November 11

The Denver Art Museum (DAM) announced today that the 10-year career survey of renowned contemporary artist Dana Schutz will be exhibited at the museum November 11, 2012, through January 13, 2013. One of the most influential young artists to emerge in the past decade, Schutz is recognized for her voracious imagination, strong subject matter and vibrant color palette. Dana Schutz: If the Face Had Wheels will be on view in the Gallagher Family Gallery and included with general museum admission. Schutz will also give a Logan Lecture on November 7, 2012, at the DAM.

Swimming, Smoking, Crying, 2009. Oil on canvas; 45 x 48 in. Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, Kansas, Gift of Marti and Tony Oppenheimer and the Oppenheimer Brothers Foundation. © Dana Schutz. Image courtesy of the artist and Zach Feuer, New York.
“Dana Schutz brings witty, bizarre humor to the grotesque in inventive figures and narratives. We at once respond to her gestural paintings on a visceral level, and also track her absurd, compelling stories,” said Gwen Chanzit, curator of modern and contemporary art at the DAM. “She energetically portrays characters on the street, figures from popular culture and those of her own invention in exuberant fantasies that some have characterized as charged commentaries on the anxieties of our current world.”

The exhibition will feature approximately 30 paintings, along with 8 drawings, created by the artist from 2001 to 2010. It includes work from her inventive series, such as Frank from Observation (2002), depicting the fictional life of Frank, the last man on Earth, as portrayed by Schutz, the world’s last painter, and recent works from the Tourettes and Verbs series such as Swimming, Smoking, Crying (2009).

“We want our visitors to explore creativity through the work and processes of individual artists and to explore their own moments of creativity in our hands-on, interactive Paint Studio space,” said Christoph Heinrich, Frederick and Jan Mayer Director of the Denver Art Museum. “Visitors will be inspired by Schutz’s bold brushwork and they will hear directly from this renowned contemporary artist at her Logan Lecture.”

Frank as a Proboscis Monkey, 2002. Oil on canvas; 36 x 32 in. Collection of the artist. © Dana Schutz. Image courtesy of Friedrich Petzel Gallery, New York.
Schutz will also be a Hamilton Visiting Artist at the University of Denver (DU) while in Denver. The Hamilton Family Foundation supports the Hamilton Collaborative—a program that brings contemporary artists to Denver to benefit both the DAM and the School of Art and Art History at DU. Each Hamilton artist works between the two institutions as a Hamilton Visiting Artist at DU while developing an installation at the DAM. Schutz will participate in studio classes at DU while she works on the installation of her exhibition at the DAM.

Recognizing Schutz’s inventive first decade, the Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, New York, granted her the Roy R. Neuberger Exhibition Prize in 2011. This award is given to an artist to mount an early career exhibition with an accompanying catalogue. This publication, Dana Schutz: If the Face Had Wheels, will be available for sale in the Museum Shop. The exhibition is curated by Neuberger Museum chief curator and deputy director for curatorial affairs Helaine Posner; in Denver, the exhibition is coordinated by DAM curator Gwen Chanzit.

Schutz was born in Livonia, Michigan, in 1976. She received a bachelor of fine arts from the Cleveland Institute of Art in 2000 and a master of fine arts from Columbia University in 2002. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. She has had solo exhibitions at the Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland; and Site Santa Fe; and has been included in group exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, and The Saatchi Gallery, London; and has participated in international presentations including the Venice and Prague Biennales.

Dana Schutz: If the Face Had Wheels is organized by the Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, State University of New York.

The Denver presentation is supported by the generous donors to the Annual Fund Leadership Campaign and the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).

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