NOMA 100 anos

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Your New Orleans Museum of Art

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John Webster Keefe

The New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) announces a public memorial service for decorative arts curator, John Webster Keefe, on Monday, February 28 at 4 pm in the Stern Auditorium in the museum. A reception will follow in the Great Hall.

Keefe joined the New Orleans Museum of Art staff in 1983. Over the years, he was responsible for over 100 exhibitions and permanent collection installations. He dramatically expanded the scope as well as the quality of the museum’s decorative arts collection.

“His extraordinary passion and encyclopedic knowledge of the visual arts were legendary, as was his quick wit, charm, and sharp sense of humor. His enthusiasm for the arts of the nineteenth century, which he described as ‘his beloved century,’ transformed the way our audiences viewed the time period and the art,” Director Susan M. Taylor said. “John was a great teacher, a mentor, and a friend to many in the museum community and beyond, and he will be sorely missed.” Keefe was the RosaMary Foundation Curator of the Decorative Arts at NOMA. Educated at Deerfield Academy (1959) and Yale University (1963, B.A., 1965, M.A.), Keefe held posts at the Toledo Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Grand Rapids Art Museum, and taught at the University of Michigan, the University of Chicago, and the continuing education programs at the University of New Orleans and Tulane University.

He was awarded the Order of the Arts and Letters by the government of France in 1979. He authored over 120 articles for the New Orleans Museum of Art’s Arts Quarterly and wrote for such national publications as The Magazine Antiques, Verandah, Southern Living, and the World Book encyclopedia. He organized a total of 112 exhibitions, among them 3,500 Years of the Glassmaker’s Art (1986), Objects of Desire: The Hodges Family Collection of Fabergé (2008), and Scents and Sensibilities (2010).

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the John W. Keefe Memorial Fund at the New Orleans Museum of Art.


The Sound of One Hand:
Paintings and Calligraphy by Zen Master Hakuin
Organized by the New Orleans Museum of Art

Organized by NOMA, The Sound of One Hand: Paintings and Calligraphy by Zen Master Hakuin is the first exhibition in the Western world devoted to the art of Hakuin (1685-1768). Hakuin invented a new visual language for Zen, using folk and everyday subjects in addition to traditional Zen themes. His influence in both teaching and art remains unequaled in Zen today.

Until relatively recently, Hakuin’s role as an artist has remained at the periphery of Japanese art history. Only in the past few years has his work begun to be included in large-scale exhibitions, collected by major museums, and featured in art surveys. For this first exhibition devoted to Hakuin in the Western world, 77 scrolls (67 by Hakuin himself and ten by his major pupils) were gathered from public and private Japanese and American collections.

Hakuin reinvigorated Zen painting during the eighteenth century, reaching new audiences and inventing new Zen painting subjects. He also authored new kōan, Zen riddles, the best known of which is ‘What is the sound of one hand?’ which has become a part of Western popular culture.

Curating the exhibition and authoring the accompanying, fully illustrated scholarly catalogue are two noted scholars of Zen painting, Stephen Addiss, the Tucker-Boatwright Professor at the University of Richmond, and independent scholar Audrey Yoshiko Seo. Additionally, Fukushima Keido Roshi, Zen Master and Abbot of Tofukuji in Kyoto, has written an introduction to the catalogue.

EVENTS:

Opening Lecture and Walk-through by Dr. Stephen Addiss
Saturday, February 12
“Hear the Sound of One Hand: Reflections on the Art of Zen Master Hakuin”
Lecture in Stern Auditorium at 2 pm
Walk-through at 3 pm
Taiko drumming at 4 pm

Exhibition Walk-throughs
Friday, February 11, March 11 & April 15, at 6 pm
Friday, February 25 & April 1, at noon

Tea Ceremony Demonstrations
Friday, February 11, February 25, March 11 & April 15, at 7 pm

Film Screenings
Friday, February 25 at 7 pm – Rashomon in Stern Auditorium
Friday, March 11 at 6:30 pm – Yojimbo in Stern Auditorium
Friday, April 15 at 6:30 pm – Tekkon Kinkreet anime film in Stern Auditorium

Artist Demonstration – Japanese Wood Block Printing
Friday, March 11 at 5:30 to 7:30 pm

Lecture & Demonstration: “The Creation of Zen Calligraphy”
Friday, April 8, 2011; 6:30 – 8 pm
John Stevens, Zen Priest, Martial Arts Expert and Art Historian

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