Vasily Kandinsky: “Composition 8 ( Komposition 8 )”. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York Solomon R. Guggenheim Founding Collection, By gift. © 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris
Source: Guggenheim Museum
“Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim” features more than 170 modern objects from the permanent collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice. Assembling many of the foundation’s most iconic works along with treasures by artists less familiar, this celebratory exhibition explores avant-garde innovations of the late nineteenth through mid-twentieth centuries, as well as the groundbreaking activities of six pioneering arts patrons who brought to light some of the most significant artists of their day and established the Guggenheim Foundation’s identity as a forward-looking institution. “Visionaries” includes important works by artists such as Alexander Calder, Paul Cézanne, Marc Chagall, Vasily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Fernand Léger, Piet Mondrian, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, and Vincent van Gogh.
“Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim” is organized by Megan Fontanella, Curator, Collections and Provenance, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, with support from Ylinka Barotto, Curatorial Assistant, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
This exhibition showcases the museum’s exceptional modern holdings as organized through the perspectives of six proponents of the avant-garde who intersected with the Guggenheim Foundation in the early decades of its history and gave their personal collections, in whole or in part, to the institution. Of these visionaries, foremost is the museum’s founder, Solomon R. Guggenheim, who, with support from his trusted advisor, the German-born artist Hilla Rebay, set aside a more traditional collecting focus to become a great champion of nonobjective art—a strand of abstraction with spiritual aims, epitomized by the work of Vasily Kandinsky. Amassed against the backdrop of economic crisis and war in the 1930s and 1940s, Guggenheim’s unparalleled modern holdings formed the basis of his foundation, established eighty years ago in 1937 with the goal of encouraging art, art education, and enlightenment for the public.