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TAHOE: A Visual History Exhibit Takes Over Museum of Art



Museum-wide, comprehensive art survey features 175 artists and more than 400 art objects, spanning over 200 years of art and cultural history related to the Lake Tahoe and Donner region.

TAHOE: A Visual History is on view August 22, 2015 – January 10, 2016

The Nevada Museum of Art has organized the first major art historical survey exhibition of one of America’s most beloved landscapes. TAHOE: A Visual History spans over two centuries of cultural and creative production related to the second deepest freshwater alpine lake in the United States and features more than 400 artworks by 175 painters, photographers, architects, basket weavers, and sculptors.

A 488-page book by the same name, co-published with Skira Rizzoli and distributed by Random House, accompanies the exhibition. Read more below.

Next Saturday, the Nevada Museum of Art is opening “TAHOE: A Visual History” with a smashing MEMBERS ONLY party. Meet artists, curators, and scholars involved with the show and enjoy live music by the Grammy-winning bluegrass band, The Steep Canyon Rangers.

Not a member? RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP NOW WITH DISCOUNT CODE TAHOE15 AND GET: One additional month of membership FREE and entry to the exclusive Members Premiere! Join today and‪ #‎CelebrateTahoe‬: http://www.nevadaart.org/give/membership/

Five years in the making, TAHOE: A Visual History presents historical painting, Native baskets, photography, architecture, and contemporary art dedicated to Lake Tahoe, Donner Pass, and the surrounding Sierra Nevada region. Nevada Museum of Art senior curator and deputy director Ann M. Wolfe curated the exhibition.

“Many books and museum exhibitions have been devoted to the art of America’s most scenic and iconic landscapes. Thanks to such scholarship, it is easy to conjure a mental image of the art of Yosemite, Yellowstone, Niagara Falls, or New York’s Hudson River valley,” Wolfe said. “The same cannot be said for the vicinity of Lake Tahoe. This exhibition, and accompanying book, surveys the contributions of hundreds of artists who have made work in or about the region.”

TAHOE: A Visual History combines historically significant cultural and art objects with contemporary works inspired by a shared reverence for region. The exhibition will be organized thematically, though somewhat chronologically to encourage dialogue among museum-goers while simultaneously transcribing historical perspective.

“Art produced in and about a place helps define its cultural identity,” Wolfe said. “Without knowledge or shared understanding of a region’s art and history, it is impossible to celebrate or critically examine its contributions to the broader culture.”

Louisa Keyser, Seed gathering basket, circa 1910–14, 19 x 19 inches (diam.), Collection of Bronnie and Alan Blaugrund.

A number of key artworks will punctuate the show, including the largest presentation of baskets by Washoe weaver Louisa Keyser (Datsolalee) ever displayed in one place. Keyser is known for her innovative development of the degikup basket form that has become synonymous with the fine art of Washoe basketry. Historical painting highlights include a major 6 x 10 foot painting of Donner Lake made by Albert Bierstadt in 1867, on loan from the New York Historical Society. The painting was
commissioned by railroad baron Collis P. Huntington who wanted to celebrate the achievements of the transcontinental railroad.

Frank Lloyd Wright, Lodge Type Cabin, Lake Tahoe Summer Colony, California: Perspective and Plan, 1923, Graphite and colored pencil on Japanese paper, 21 x 13 ¾ inches. Collection Centre Canadien d ’Architecture/Canadian Center for Architecture, Montreal, Gift of George Jacobsen and of the CCA Founders Circle in his memory, 1994, © 2014 Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Scottsdale, Arizona/Artists Rights Society (ARS)), NY.

Also on view will be many of the smaller oil studies that Bierstadt made in preparation for the large painting. Architectural treasures include original drawings and sketches by Frank Lloyd Wright for a proposed 1923 “Summer Colony” at Emerald Bay that was never built. The development plan featured floating cabins and cabins perched along the shoreline.

A 4 x 4 foot model of the Frank Lloyd Wright proposal will be on display.

More than 15 contemporary artists will be featured alongside these historical heavyweights. The Nevada Museum of Art has commissioned a number of works for the show, including pieces by Chester Arnold, Russell Crotty, Erica Osborne, Lordy Rodriguez, Nick Van Woert, and internationally-celebrated designer and artist Maya Lin. For the exhibition, Lin created three sculptures, each reflecting on annual precipitation in the Tahoe watershed and water clarity.

TAHOE: A Visual History weaves a comprehensive narrative of two centuries of art and cultural production related to the Lake Tahoe watershed. Section summaries and highlights are as follows:

Features the largest collection of Washoe baskets ever assembled, including examples from Scees Bryant, Lena Dick, Louisa Keyser (Dat-So-La-Lee), and Sarah Mayo.

The first American explorers to the West mapped the region and documented their impressions of Lake Tahoe in journals and sketches. Features maps and journals of John C. Frémont, John Muir, and Charles Preuss.

By the late 19th century, word of Tahoe’s beauty had spread and artists flocked to romanticize it. This section features more than 60 artists, including Albert Bierstadt, Edwin Deakin, Maynard Dixon, Thomas Hill, John Ross Key, and Lorenzo Latimer.

Ansel Adams, Emerald Bay, 1952, Gelatin silver print, 15 ¼ x 18 ¾ inches,, Collection of Norma and Ranson Webster, © 2014 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust. Image courtesy NMA.

From the earliest days of photography, Tahoe has beckoned photographers to its scenic vistas. Features both early and contemporary works from several artists including Ansel Adams, Anne Brigman, Elizabeth Carmel, Alfred Hart, Peter Goin, Eadweard Muybridge, Carleton Watkins, and Charles Leander Weed.

A thorough survey of historic log structures to sustainable contemporary buildings. Celebrates the diversity of Tahoe architecture through the work of Bernard Maybeck, Frederic de Longchamps, John Maniscalo, Julia Morgan, and Frank Lloyd Wright, among others.

The Nevada Museum of Art brings together works by contemporary artists, all of whom are inspired by the Tahoe region and concerned for its future. Artists include Chester Arnold, Russell Crotty, Matthew Day Jackson, Maya Lin, Richard Long, Lordy Rodriguez, Phyllis Shafer, Nick Van Woert, and others.

FINAL_TAHOE-COVER-1_22TAHOE: A Visual History is the first comprehensive exhibition to survey artworks related to Lake Tahoe, Donner Pass, and the surrounding Sierra region. A 488-page book will be co-published by Skira Rizzoli and the Nevada Museum of Art, and internationally distributed by Random House. It will be available for purchase at the Museum Store and select area bookstores, as well as internationally on Amazon.com. Pre-orders can be placed by calling the Museum Store at 775.398.7206.

San Francisco designer Kit Hinrichs, co-founder of Pentagram, designed the 488-page hard-cover book. Nevada Museum of Art Senior Curator/Deputy Director Ann M. Wolfe will author the publication, along with noteworthy scholars: Dr. Kevin Starr, California Historian | Catherine Fowler, Great Basin Anthropologist | Marvin Cohodas, art historian | JoAnn Nevers, Washoe elder | Alfred Harrison, California Art Historian |William L. Fox, Director, Center for Art + Environment, Nevada Museum of Art | Colin M. Robertson, Nevada Museum of Art Charles N. Mathewson Curator of Education.

The book serves as the definitive survey of art about the Lake Tahoe region. Several of the artworks included in this publication have never before been published in any major book or catalogue.
TAHOE: A VISUAL HISTORY is organized by the Nevada Museum of Art and curated by Ann M. Wolfe. It will be exhibited August 22, 2015 through January 10, 2016 exclusively at the Nevada Museum of Art, Donald W. Reynolds Center for the Visual Arts, E. L. Wiegand Gallery located at 160 West Liberty Street in downtown Reno, Nev.

A Tribute to Wayne Prim
Lake Tahoe and Wayne Prim are deeply intertwined. A beloved and longtime resident, Wayne, along with his wife Miriam, has contributed keen insights, wisdom, fiscal expertise, and extraordinary generosity to numerous educational, cultural, and social services organizations, truly helping to make Lake Tahoe a vibrant and dynamic community.

Premiere Sponsor: Wayne and Miriam Prim and the Wayne L. Prim Foundation

Lead Sponsors: Nancy Siebens Binz; Deborah Day in memory of Theodore J. Day; EMPLOYERS ®; I. Heidi Loeb Hegerich; IGT; Nancy and Brian Kennedy; The Satre Family Fund at the Community Foundation of Western Nevada; and Wells Fargo

Major Sponsors: The Bretzlaff Foundation; Carol Franc Buck Foundation; Irene and George Drews; The Thelma B. and Thomas P. Hart Foundation; and National Endowment for the Arts

Supporting Sponsors: Carole Kilgore Anderson and Family in memory of J. Robert Anderson; Kathie Bartlett and Family in memory of Matthew, Phil & Syd Bartlett; Denise and Tim Cashman; Chase International Real Estate; Judy and David Collins; Andrea and John Deane; Susan and Stuart Engs; Leonard and Sara Lafrance; Anne Brockinton Lee and Robert M. Lee; Enid A. Oliver, ChFC, Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.; and Sandy Raffealli/Bill Pearce Motors

Additional Sponsors: Atlantis Casino Resort Spa; Alan and Jeanne Blach; Caesars Entertainment; Elaine Cardinale; Jan and David Hardie | Hallador Investment Advisors; The Chica Charitable Gift Fund; Claudia Huntington and Marshall B. Miller in honor of William Bliss and Family; Bruce and Nora James; Heidi A. Loeb, Joseph and Emily Wieczorek; Charlotte & Dick McConnell; Mercedes-Benz of Reno; Sari and Ian Rogoff; Camille and Larry Ruvo and your friends at Southern Wine and Spirits of Nevada; Sotheby’s; Jenny and Garrett Sutton; Gigi and Lash Turville; Rick and Karen Wolford; Tahoe Regional Planning Agency; and Volunteers in Art

Lead Media Sponsor: RGJ Media

Media Sponsor: Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority

Media and Promotional Support: Getaway Reno Tahoe; KUNR; Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority; Regional Transportation Commission; Reno-Tahoe International Airport; Summit Shopping Center; Tahoe Blue Vodka; Tahoe Transportation District; and Tahoe Quarterly.


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