Arts

Museums Special

This fall’s standout shows in museums throughout the six-state region

“Ice” by Kathleen Kolb, one of the artists whose work is on display in “New England Now” at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont.
Kathleen Kolb
“Ice” by Kathleen Kolb, one of the artists whose work is on display in “New England Now” at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont.

MASSACHUSETTS

POETRY OF NATURE: HUDSON RIVER SCHOOL LANDSCAPES FROM THE NEW-YORK HISTORICAL SOCIETY Roughly 40 paintings by Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, Albert Bierstadt, and more represent the first truly American art movement: sublime, majestic, and numinous landscapes. Through Nov. 25. Worcester Art Museum, 55 Salisbury St., Worcester. 508-799-4406, www.worcesterart.org

 

EMPRESSES OF CHINA’S FORBIDDEN CITY, 1644-1912 Much is known about the emperors of the Qing dynasty, China’s last dynastic rulers. This lavish show sheds unprecedented light on the lives, beliefs, accouterments, and political intrigues of the Qing empresses. Through Dec. 10.Peabody Essex Museum, East India Square, Salem. 978-745-9500, www.pem.org

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CARRIE MAE WEEMS: STRATEGIES OF ENGAGEMENT In this exhibition of more than 120 photographs, videos, and mixed-media works (including immersive installations) made over three decades, Weems interrogates the past, dismantles notions of power, and confronts racism. Through Dec. 13. McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College, 2101 Commonwealth Ave. 617-552-8587, www.bc.edu/artmuseum

INTRODUCING TONY CONRAD: A RETROSPECTIVE This joint exhibition shows the considerable range of an artist best known for minimal music and structural film. Works include painting, video, performance, and installation. Oct. 18-Jan. 6. MIT ListVisual Arts Center, 20 Ames St., Cambridge. 617-253-4680, istart.mit.edu. Oct. 18-Dec. 30. Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Harvard University, 617-496-5387, carpenter.center

 

ANIMAL-SHAPED VESSELS FROM THE ANCIENT WORLD: FEASTING WITH GODS, HEROES AND KINGS This exploration of alcohol, trade, power, and ritual features symbol-laden vessels fashioned after beasts, from gazelles to griffins, and used in ceremonies from the Bronze Age to the 7th century. Through Jan. 6. Harvard Art Museums, 32 Quincy St., Cambridge. 617-495-9400, www.harvardartmuseums.org

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WINNIE-THE-POOH: EXPLORING A CLASSIC Where did that tubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff come from? Where has he been? Close to 200 objects explore Pooh’s considerable scope and delve into the lively collaboration between his creators, writer A.A. Milne and illustrator E.H. Shepard. Through Jan. 6. Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave. 617-267-9300, www.mfa.org

 

Ansel Adams’s “Cemetery Statue and Oil Derricks, Long Beach, California” will be included in “Ansel Adams in Our Time” at the Museum of Fine Arts Dec. 13-Feb. 24.
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Ansel Adams’s “Cemetery Statue and Oil Derricks, Long Beach, California” will be included in “Ansel Adams in Our Time” at the Museum of Fine Arts Dec. 13-Feb. 24.

ANSEL ADAMS IN OUR TIME This exhibition positions the modernist photographer at the center of a continuum, highlighting his iconic images of the West alongside those of 19th-century predecessors such as Timothy O’Sullivan, and 21st-century successors such as Mark Klett. Dec. 13-Feb. 24. Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave. 617-267-9300, www.mfa.org

  

WILLIAM FORSYTHE: CHOREOGRAPHIC OBJECTS Coinciding with the choreographer’s residency at Boston Ballet, this exhibition features interactive architectural installations, kinetic sculptures, and video projections that prompt viewers to think with their bodies, move, and coincidentally create their own dances. Oct. 31-Feb.24. Institute of Contemporary Art, 25 Harbor Shore Drive. 617-478-3100, www.icaboston.org

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TURNER AND CONSTABLE: THE INHABITED LANDSCAPE These two towering British painters witnessed the landscape as a site of change, as social, political, and industrial forces reshaped society in the 19th century. On view: more than 50 paintings, watercolors, drawings, and prints. Dec. 15-March 10. Clark Art Institute, 225 South St., Williamstown. 413-458-2303, www.clarkart.edu

 

CONNECTICUT

GEORGE SHAW: A CORNER OF A FOREIGN FIELD The Turner Prize nominee is celebrated for depopulated scenes of Coventry, his hometown, in the British Midlands. His enamel paintings shrewdly meld art-historical references with contemporary meditations on time, class, and the British landscape. Through Dec. 30. Yale Center for British Art, 1080 Chapel St., New Haven. 877-274-8278, britishart.yale.edu

 

MONSTERS & MYTHS: SURREALISM AND WAR IN THE 1930s AND ’40s Surrealism sprang from Dada’s anti-rationalist reaction to World War I’s horrors, and in the following decades, Salvador Dalí, Joan Miró, Max Ernst, and more made lush, bizarre works reflecting a world struggling with hardship. Oct. 20-Jan. 13. Wadsworth Atheneum, 600 Main St., Hartford. 860-278-2670, www.thewadsworth.org

 

MAINE

Portland Museum of Art.
Isamu Noguchi’s “Untitled” is on display in the exhibit “Beyond the Pedestal: Isamu Noguchi and the Borders of Sculpture” at the Portland Museum of Art.

BEYOND THE PEDESTAL: ISAMU NOGUCHI AND THE BORDERS OF SCULPTURE The modernist sculptor (and landscape architect, set designer, and furniture designer) forged new formal frontiers as he studied how people addressed, avoided, and navigated around objects in space. Through Jan. 6. Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Square, Portland. 207-775-6148, www.portlandmuseum.org

 

CMCA BIENNIAL 2018 The Center for Maine Contemporary Art has been staging biennials since 1978. This year’s show spotlights more than 40 artist and artist groups. Look for works by Amy Stacey Curtis, Anna Hepler, and Hilary Irons. Nov. 3-March 3. Center for Maine Contemporary Art, 21 Winter St., Rockland, Maine. 207-701-5005, cmcanow.org

 

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Konstantin Dimopoulos’s “The Blue Trees” at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, N.H.
Alana Johanson
Konstantin Dimopoulos’s “The Blue Trees” at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, N.H.

KONSTANTIN DIMOPOULOS: THE BLUE TREES The artist worked with community volunteers to paint nearly 100 trees near the Currier Museum bright blue, using an environmentally safe pigment that will fade over time, to call attention to the plight of trees and forests. Through winter 2019. Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., Manchester, N.H. 603-669-6144,www.currier.org

 

RHODE ISLAND

REPAIR AND DESIGN FUTURES With objects from around the world and across three centuries, this textile exhibition highlights mending as action and metaphor. Stitched-up garments, clothes as conceptual art, and unwitting holes in the museum’s collection are all marked by humble repair. Through Sept. 30, 2019. RISD Museum, 20 North Main St., Providence. 401-454-6500, www.risdmuseum.org

 

VERMONT

NEW ENGLAND NOW The Shelburne Museum kicks off its new biennial series with an inquiry into the New England landscape — what is springing up, what is dying off, and what, indeed, defines the region. Artists include Yvonne Jacquette, Joseph McNamara, and Kathleen Kolb. Through Jan. 13. Shelburne Museum, 6000 Shelburne Road, Shelburne, Vt. 802-985-3346, www.shelburnemuseum.org

Cate McQuaid can be reached at catemcquaid@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter @cmcq.