Clyfford Still / Mark Bradford
Opens April 9, 2017

Mark Bradford, Shade, 2016. Mixed media on canvas; 60 x 48 in. © Mark Bradford. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth, Inc. Photograph by Joshua White.

Mark Bradford, Butch Queen, 2016. Mixed media on canvas; 102-1/4 x 144-1/2 x 3 in. © Mark Bradford. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth, Inc. Photograph by Joshua White.

Mark Bradford, Mississippi Gottdam, 2007. Billboard paper, photomechanical reproductions, acrylic gel medium, comic-book paper, wrapping paper and additional mixed media on canvas; support: 102 x 144 in. Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York, George B. and Jenny R. Mathews Fund, 2008. ©2007 Mark Bradford. Image courtesy of the artist and Sikkema Jenkins & Co., New York. Photograph by Luciano Fileti.

Mark Bradford

Mark Bradford (American, born 1961). Photograph courtesy the artist.


April 9, 2017 – July 16, 2017
Hamilton Building - Level 1
Included in general admission
Purchase general admission tickets online.

Contemporary works and abstract expressionist masterpieces converge in Shade: Clyfford Still / Mark Bradford, a collaborative presentation by the Denver Art Museum (DAM) and Clyfford Still Museum (CSM). Paintings by renowned contemporary American artist Mark Bradford—who was recently named the U.S. representative at the 2017 Venice Biennale—will be on view at the DAM, alongside related canvases by Clyfford Still. An exhibition of Still's work curated by Bradford will be on view at CSM. Shade underscores the legacy of abstract expressionism and Bradford's exploration of abstraction's power to address social and political concerns.

As an African American painter, Bradford has long been fascinated by Still's extensive use of black as a signature component of his work. Shade explores both artists' unique relationships to black in their paintings, whether it's used to force viewers out of their comfort zones, evoke emotions, or confront conventional notions of race.

Social activism through art will be explored further with programming at both museums, inspired by Bradford’s Art + Practice Foundation, which he founded with philanthropist and collector Eileen Harris Norton, and social activist Allan DiCastro.

Shade is accompanied by an illustrated exhibition catalog that will be available in The Shops at the Denver Art Museum and online.

This is a traveling exhibition, a version of which will be at Buffalo’s Albright-Knox Art Gallery May 26–October 2, 2016, and will be on view to Denver audiences April 9–July 16, 2017 at DAM and CSM. DAM’s exhibition, curated by Rebecca Hart, curator of modern and contemporary art, will be an expanded presentation of the works on view at Albright-Knox. Bradford’s curation at CSM will feature approximately 15 works by Clyfford Still, and continues the Artists Select program, which invites contemporary artists to curate works from the museum’s holdings to explore Still’s legacy and the inspiration each draws from the work.

Shade: Clyfford Still/Mark Bradford is organized by the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. Its presentation in Denver is a collaboration between the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, the Clyfford Still Museum, and the Denver Art Museum. The exhibition is generously funded by Vicki and Kent Logan, Christie’s, and US Bank. Additional funding is provided by the donors to the Annual Fund Leadership Campaign and the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD). Promotional support is provided by 5280 Magazine, CBS4, Comcast Spotlight, and The Denver Post.

Things to Do

  • Shade: Clyfford Still/Mark Bradford Public Tours
    Event: Tours

    Shade: Clyfford Still/Mark Bradford Public Tours

    Beginning on April 9, 2017 this will occur every Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday through July 16, 2017.

    Starting April 9, a 45-minute tour of Shade will be offered on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays at 2 pm.

    Included in general admission; no reservations are needed.

    Meet on level 1 of the Hamilton Building. More

  • Untitled Final Fridays
    Event: Untitled Final Fridays

    Untitled: Talk Back

    Friday, April 28, 2017 - 6:00pm10:00pm.

    Get the conversation going with an action-packed look at speaking up and getting shady. More

  • Mark Bradford, Realness, 2016
    Event: Lectures & Programs

    100th Logan Lecture: Mark Bradford

    Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - 6:00pm7:00pm.

    Date tentative; watch for confirmation. Individual tickets not currently available, but Bradford lecture is included in series ticket. More