New art exhibits opening on the campus of Gustavus Adolphus College Feb. 17 provide the opportunity for art patrons to celebrate two very different sets of work in one evening.
First, in the Schaefer Gallery of Art, Virginia A. Groot Artist-in-Residence Jacob Stanley opens an exhibit featuring his recent art installation with the goal of fostering a dialogue with a “non-art” audience. Then, in the Hillstrom Museum of Art, an exhibit opens featuring Elmyr de Hory’s work as a skilled forger successfully creating counterfeit copies of work from the greats including Picasso, Degas, and Matisse.
The afternoon kicks off with the opening of The Poetics of Destruction: Jacob Stanley, Groot Artist in Residence, featuring the work of this year’s Virginia A. Groot Artist-in-Residence Jacob Stanley. The opening reception will be from 4:30-6:30 p.m. in the Schaefer Gallery of Art and Stanley will give an artist talk at 5 p.m.
Stanley’s work features large-scale sculptures created from deconstructed materials which he recontextualizes in new ways, while never forgetting their original intent. “I create artwork that lives in dynamic stasis—a state between collapse and construction, tension and balance, refinement and rawness,” he says. “This state of ambiguity entreats viewers to scrutinize the piece and analyze its latent potential.”
Stanley has spent the last year working with students at Gustavus as part of the residency which supports a current working sculptor to set up shop on campus next door to the senior art major studios. This partnership has led to increased collaboration between students and the sculptor-in-residence over the three years the program has been on campus.
Stanley has been working with students to introduce them to new ways of working with different materials and has seen them develop to take more risks without having to check in with the “rules.” As someone who works in the art installation world, he encourages them not only to look specifically in great detail at the space in which their art will live, but also asks them to examine who it’s for. “The goal of any decent artwork is to communicate something to the viewers: an idea, an emotion, a thought,” he says. “If we don’t think about our intended recipient that job is much harder, if not impossible.”
The exhibit is open through March 13 and the Schaefer Art Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.–10 p.m. and Saturday/Sunday 9 a.m.–5 p.m.
Later that evening The Secret World of Art Forger Elmyr de Hory: His Portraiture on Ibiza opens at the Hillstrom Museum of Art. The reception for exhibit will run from 7–9 p.m. A special lecture by de Hory’s heir and biographer Mark Forgy entitled “The Secret Life of Art Forger Elmyr de Hor–His Struggle to Emerge From Infamy” will be held later this spring at 3:30 p.m. on March 22 in Björling Recital Hall.
Forgy, who lived with de Hory in Ibiza as his personal assistant and friend, says that the life of the artist was “a mix of self-made myth and even more extraordinary truth.” He says de Hory’s dive into forgery happened quite by accident when an acquaintance visited de Hory’s studio and offered to buy a drawing he had made in the manner of Pablo Picasso. She believed it to be a true piece by Picasso and de Hory sold it to her without correcting her. This led down a rabbit hole in which de Hory created hundreds of forged pieces and a lasting legacy as not only a forger but also, as Forgy argues, an immensely talented artist.
The exhibit opening at the Hillstrom Museum of Art contains more than 50 works from the artist and will be on display through April 19. Museum hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. and Saturday/Sunday 1 p.m.–5 p.m.