Saturday, February 17, 2018
Features and More

American art takes over D.C.'s Phillips Collection

WASHINGTON

One of the great art patrons of the 20th century, who built the nation's first modern art museum in Washington, is offering a broad new look at the evolution of American art through a collector's eye beginning 100 years ago.

"Made in the U.S.A." has taken over most of the Phillips Collection for the next six months after returning home from a tour in Europe, Japan and several U.S. cities. It draws from the extensive collection Duncan Phillips amassed during his life and includes 202 works by more than 100 artists, ranging from Winslow Homer to Mark Rothko.

The show also offers a glimpse at how Phillips methodically invested in art for the nation's capital to help lift American artists out of obscurity in the early 20th century. His acquisitions seemed to follow the defining movements of American art through two world wars and beyond.

Curators selected works from 1850 to 1970, ranging from realism and impressionism to modern life and abstract expressionism. Works by Thomas Eakins, Marsden Hartley, Georgia O'Keeffe and Edward Hopper are shown among their contemporaries.

"If you step back 100 years, there were no textbooks of modern art," said curator Susan Behrends Frank. "There wasn't anything that said this artist is more important than this artist. (Phillips) was trying to understand each of these artists on their own, knowing that … he might be proven wrong."

So the group of more than 200 pieces includes both familiar names and less-recognized artists.

Phillips sought out emerging artists, those who were self-taught, women and artists of color who were reflecting the nation's changing identity, including Jacob Lawrence, Grandma Moses and Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo. He was also one of the first museum directors to seek out and celebrate gritty everyday scenes of urban America, curators said.

From the founding of his museum in 1921, Phillips was uniquely engaged with the art and artists of his time, and the exhibit reflects his tastes for a range of styles.

"You feel this sense of Phillips' own learning, a sense of adventure and risk-taking — and how it's not about a formula sequence of trophy objects," said museum director Dorothy Kosinski.

"Made in the U.S.A." was originally envisioned as a four-year traveling show for a growing interest in American art abroad where the work of U.S. artists, especially in Europe, was long dismissed. It drew large crowds at galleries in Madrid and Tokyo and was well-received. So museum leaders decided to stage a much larger version back home in Washington through Aug. 31.

"We were all just blown away and really saw it as an opportunity to show the strength of the American collection in a way that perhaps isn't always visible," she said.

Comments
Trumpeter is the highlight of a concert featuring ‘West Side Story’ themes

Trumpeter is the highlight of a concert featuring ‘West Side Story’ themes

TAMPA — Leonard Bernstein would have turned 100 this year. The Florida Orchestra performed two of his works Friday, the second of which paired the dances from West Side Story with the overture to Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet.The orches...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Five things that make Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Volta’ different and fun

Five things that make Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Volta’ different and fun

TAMPA — Cirque du Soleil is back in town with a new show.The Montreal-based company always puts on an extravaganza, splashing around color with the abandon of a toddler playing with paint buckets and a storyline several layers deep, the artistic skel...
Published: 02/16/18
The Reading Room’s Lauren Macellaro and Columbia’s Richard Gonzmart are James Beard semifinalists

The Reading Room’s Lauren Macellaro and Columbia’s Richard Gonzmart are James Beard semifinalists

It’s almost a sick joke. On the morning after Valentine’s Day, the second-busiest restaurant day of the year, chefs all over the country are hauling themselves out of bed early to find out: Did I make it onto this year’s James Beard Foundation list o...
Published: 02/15/18
Put Alaskan king crab leg shells to work in a creamy, dreamy bisque

Put Alaskan king crab leg shells to work in a creamy, dreamy bisque

Nothing says indulgence like noshing on some seriously giant Alaskan king crab legs. They’re not just tasty, they’re a low-fat source of protein: One leg has about 25 grams of protein and a host of vitamins and minerals (including sodium, incidentall...
Published: 02/15/18
Avocado toast gets a persimmon twist

Avocado toast gets a persimmon twist

You’ve likely seen persimmon in the grocery store and then shied away from it, not quite sure what to do with it. The most common variety in the United States is the fuyu persimmon, also called Japanese persimmon, and it looks similar to a slightly f...
Published: 02/15/18
Bar review: Valenty’s Lounge, part of Pasadena Liquors in St. Pete — who knew?

Bar review: Valenty’s Lounge, part of Pasadena Liquors in St. Pete — who knew?

Once, if I’d received a recommendation to check out a lounge attached to a liquor store near the beach, I wouldn’t have been in much of a hurry to check it out. But I’ve learned that there’s frequently magic in these places. ...
Published: 02/15/18
Local craft beer of the week: Process IPA, Calusa Brewing

Local craft beer of the week: Process IPA, Calusa Brewing

Not long ago, it was all about the West Coast IPA. California breweries like Stone, Russian River and Bear Republic built empires on the style, favoring a dry IPA base and mountains of resiny, intensely bitter hops to craft aggressive brews that laug...
Published: 02/15/18
New CoffeeHouse and Eatery comes to South Tampa

New CoffeeHouse and Eatery comes to South Tampa

Daily Dose Coffeehouse & Eatery opened earlier this month and offers South Tampa unique smoked coffee and a number of fresh, homemade breakfast items.Located in Fair Oaks Plaza at 3324 W Gandy Blvd., Daily Dose serves a different chef special everyda...
Published: 02/15/18
Rocco’s Tacos & Tequila Bar has opened at International Plaza

Rocco’s Tacos & Tequila Bar has opened at International Plaza

INTERNATIONAL PLAZA—After a long wait, the highly anticipated Rocco’s Tacos and Tequila bar is finally open for business at International Plaza’s Bay Street on Monday (Feb 12).Originally expected to open last September, owner Rocco Mangel said they g...
Published: 02/15/18
I sat through Disney's Hall of Presidents five times. It says more about us than Trump.

I sat through Disney's Hall of Presidents five times. It says more about us than Trump.

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Next time you’re at the Magic Kingdom, walk up Main Street USA and hang a left at Cinderella’s castle. Enter the faux colonial Liberty Square, with its exact replica Liberty Bell and "liberty tree" adorned with 1...
Published: 02/15/18