Freya Grand, “Pu’ U O’ O,” 2016, oil on canvas, 48 x 60 in.
Freya Grand, “Pu’ U O’ O,” 2016, oil on canvas, 48 x 60 in.

“Dialog: Landscape and Abstraction” at the Art Museum of the Americas (amamuseum.org), Washington, DC, through April 26, 2020

Operated by the Organization of American States (essentially the United Nations of North, Central, and South America), the Art Museum of the Americas (AMA) is an often-overlooked jewel box in the heart of the nation’s capital.

Freya Grand, “Poas,” 2004, oil on canvas, 48 x 60 in.
Freya Grand, “Poas,” 2004, oil on canvas, 48 x 60 in.

From the museum:

On view this season is an exhibition, “Dialog: Landscape and Abstraction,” that pairs mid-20th-century abstractions from the permanent collection with paintings by the Washington landscapist Freya Grand. Her immersive landscapes of Ecuador, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, and the Galapagos Islands share forms, textures, symbols, colors, and compositions with works created by such forerunners as Maria Luisa Pacheco (Bolivia), Angel Hurtado (Venezuela), and Anibal Villacis (Ecuador).

Maria Luisa Pacheco, “Composition 1960,” 1960, oil on canvas, 48 x 61 in. Collection OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas
Maria Luisa Pacheco, “Composition 1960,” 1960, oil on canvas, 48 x 61 in. Collection OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas
Angel Hurtado, “Signo en el Espaci,” 1962, oil on canvas, 62 x 76 in. Collection OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas
Angel Hurtado, “Signo en el Espaci,” 1962, oil on canvas, 62 x 76 in. Collection OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas
Danilo di Prete, “Pasagen Cosmica no. 2,” 1963, mixed media/canvas, 58 x 58 in. Collection OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas
Danilo di Prete, “Pasagen Cosmica no. 2,” 1963, mixed media/canvas, 58 x 58 in. Collection OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas

The works in this exhibition were selected through a conversation between AMA’s curator, Adriana Ospina, and guest curator Hilary Piece Hatfield. Hatfield was invited to explore the AMA’s extensive digital archive and in doing so, she noted strong correlations between Freya Grand’s work from the Americas and certain abstract works in the permanent collection. Ospina and Hatfield then visited with Freya Grand at her Washington, DC, studio and continued their curatorial dialog with the artist, reflecting on Grand’s work and Hatfield’s selections from the AMA’s collection. The curatorial team found that the process led them to the selection of many of the same works of art. This resulting exhibition demonstrates a shared language among the artists and suggests that humanity has an essential dialog with the earth.

Grand describes her process as a direct, immersive experience and that she moves fluidly from close proximity to her subjects to observing them from a vast distance. She asserts, “The two experiences — the one tactile and intimate and physical, the other a privileged bird’s-eye view — inform and enrich each other. These experiences allow me to feel the land under my feet, as well as comprehend the larger patterns, structures, and forces at play.”

Freya Grand (b. 1947), “Tungurahua,” 2011, oil on canvas, 48 x 60 in.
Freya Grand (b. 1947), “Tungurahua,” 2011, oil on canvas, 48 x 60 in.

PANEL DISCUSSIONS
Women Artists at the Art Museum of the Americas
International Women’s Day: Sunday, March 8, 2020, 12:00–1:30 p.m.

Earth Day Panel Talk
Art and Our Environment: An Essential Dialog
Thursday, April 23, 2020, 12:00–1:30 p.m.


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