Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

SPRING ARTS PREVIEW: VISUAL ARTS; Art Exhibitions Look Back at St. Louis' Diverse History

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

SPRING ARTS PREVIEW: VISUAL ARTS; Art Exhibitions Look Back at St. Louis' Diverse History

Article excerpt

Spring brings some important exhibitions in the visual arts; most of them will still be around for the heat of the summer.

* St. Louis, lest we forget, was founded by French traders. To commemorate the 250th anniversary of that founding, the St. Louis Art Museum will present "Impressionist France: Visions of Nation from Le Gray to Monet," a major exhibition of paintings and photographs, 120 of them in all, from 19th-century France.

The exhibition offers a virtual journey through France via seven thematic sections: exploring Paris and the modern cityscape; monuments; rivers and forests; rural and agricultural life; mountains; marine views; and railroads and factories. It's focused on the years between 1850 and 1880 and includes work by Impressionist painters including Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Edgar Degas, Paul Czanne, douard Manet and Berthe Morisot, and photographers Gustave Le Gray and Charles Marville, among others. It's an opportunity to see competing visions of France. (March 16 to July 6 at the St. Louis Art Museum, Forest Park; $14 adults, $12 seniors and students, $10 children 6 to 12 and free on Fridays; 314- 721-0071 or slam.org.)

* They call St. Louis "Mound City," but most of the mounds are long gone. So are most other traces of the American Indian Mississippian culture; only a few mounds remain at Cahokia. The mound builders themselves disappeared 600 years ago, and even most people in St. Louis know little about them.

That's the starting point for the "Mound City" exhibition, an artistic exploration of "the interrelationship between art, history and nature," including traces of pre-Columbian culture and other "uncelebrated realities" including racial issues, environmental problems and other woes from which our culture suffers.

Artists taking part include A Tribe Called Red (Ottawa), Sam Durant (Los Angeles), Geoffrey Krawczyk (New York), Beverly Pepper (Todi, Italy), Alison Saar (Los Angeles), Marie Watt (New York), among others, along with in-residence archeologists Joe Harl and Robin Machiran. (April 12-Aug. 24 at Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road; free; 314-615-5278 or laumeiersculpturepark.org.)

* The "Great Rivers Biennial 2014" at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis will feature three artists Brandon Anschultz, Carlie Trosclair, and Cayce Zavaglia who work in very different styles. …

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