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Art in AIT

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Art in AIT Call for Artwork

  • Huang Yen-jyhn for his piece Conversion-01
    Huang Yen-jyhn for his piece Conversion-01

    Huangs piece was selected from among over 50 original works submitted by young Taiwan artists. Huang is a senior student studying Fine Arts at the National Taiwan University of Arts. 


Jose Parla, Families in Migration Across the World, 2011, Acrylic and ink on wood; ARS  (Photo: Courtesy of Parla Studios, LLC, Brooklyn, New York)

Jose Parla, Families in Migration Across the World, 2011, Acrylic and ink on wood; ARS (Photo: Courtesy of Parla Studios, LLC, Brooklyn, New York)

Some of my favorite paintings corral the energy, creativity, and discipline of other art forms. Henri Matisse (1869-1954) delivered the primal joy of dance and Edgar Degas (1834-1917) revealed the refinement of ballet. During his blue period, Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) depicted a lone man strumming his guitar, oblivious to the world around him. Lucille Nurkse’s collage Singer for Saxophonist uses jazz as its inspiration. The woman singer in the distinctive hat is the dominant presence here. We can imagine her belting out a tune with flair. Jazz is the American music form that is arguably the most expressive. It energized America in the first half of the twentieth century and Louis Armstrong was its most iconic figure. Nearly 90 years since Armstrong’s early recordings, including the legendary West End Blues, and his solos still sound fresh and buoyant. The Philippe Halsman (1906-1979) photo, which first appeared in Life Magazine in 1966, answers the question of how someone might depict a larger-than-life figure when we are limited to a two-dimensional form. The photographer shoots Louis Armstrong at such an extreme angle that it appears as though he is ready to burst into third dimension.

I am very pleased we could include two pieces from influential modern painters Elizabeth Murray (1940-2007) and Jennifer Bartlett. Both were at the forefront of a generation of bold abstract artists in the 1970s and 1980s. Ms. Murray was one of the few women whose work was featured in a full retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art in 2006. Her Deep Blue C is representative of her unique style. A vivid blue cup cannot contain its beverage, which rises and threatens to overflow like roaring waves. Like many of Elizabeth Murray’s other works, Deep Blue C seems to be rooted in cartoon drawings that bring to life inanimate objects. Jennifer Bartlett has been one of my favorite artists since I saw her works at an exhibition in the mid-1980s, when she captivated audiences through abstract renderings of a garden pool and numerous studies of simple house forms made of a triangle atop a rectangle. In Earth Fireworks, she tells a story that all Americans can identify with – the inclusiveness of the Fourth of July. The bursts of light on the canvas bring me back to the Independence Days of my youth, when my family would join revelers of all backgrounds inhabiting the FDR Bridge in Manhattan, staring straight up at the night sky, spellbound by the shimmering streams cascading down on us.

We hope you enjoy viewing these works and the others that round out the exhibition as much as we did in assembling them. Thanks go to Art in Embassies Curator Sarah Tanguy for her advice and patience. The Public Diplomacy Section of AIT, especially Alys Spensley, deserves special appreciation for organizing the installation of the artwork. Finally, thanks to all of our friends in Taiwan for supporting the arts and U.S.-Taiwan cultural exchange.

AIT Director Kin Moy

July 2016

On Line Exhibitions

  • 2016 Taipei
    2016 Taipei

    Click here for the online Exhibitions on