CORPUS CHRISTI, TX - Traveling some 2,000 miles across the country, a slice of Hamptons art history is now on view and making an impact at the Art Museum of South Texas in “Adventures in the Arts.” The exhibition at AMST is the latest stop for a touring selection of select works from the esteemed permanent collection of Guild Hall Museum in East Hampton in The Hamptons.

Guild Hall: Adventures in the Arts - Selections from the Permanent Collection” opened January 17 and runs through April 30, 2017. The exhibition features 72 works from the Guild Hall collection, giving Texas residents and visitors the opportunity to see artwork from a range of distinguished artists, including such 20th century masters as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Jackson Pollock and Chuck Close. The works date back to Impressionism in the 1870s and progress through practically every succeeding modern art movement—Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Pop art and more—up to the art of the 1980s and ’90s.

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Max Ernst, "Face" by Max Ernst, 1967-68. Bronze, 9 ¾ x 15 ¼ x 7 5/8 inches. Gift of Dallas and Jimmy Ernst. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

Max Ernst, "Face" by Max Ernst, 1967-68. Bronze, 9 ¾ x 15 ¼ x 7 5/8 inches. Gift of Dallas and Jimmy Ernst. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

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Not only are museum visitors able to see diverse artists and their distinct styles over time, but also a wide range of art mediums. The selection includes sculpture, paintings, prints, photographs, drawings and mixed media pieces that date back to the 19th century.

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“Little Old Cottage, Egypt Lane, East Hampton” by Childe Hassam, 1917. Oil on canvas, 32 3/4 x 45 1/2 inches. Gift of Mrs. Chauncey B. Garver in memory of her great uncle and great aunt, Mr. and Mrs. Childe Hassam. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

“Little Old Cottage, Egypt Lane, East Hampton” by Childe Hassam, 1917. Oil on canvas, 32 3/4 x 45 1/2 inches. Gift of Mrs. Chauncey B. Garver in memory of her great uncle and great aunt, Mr. and Mrs. Childe Hassam. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

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The exhibition was organized after representatives of the Art Museum of South Texas, situated on the Gulf of Mexico in the city of Corpus Christi, expressed interest in bringing the Guild Hall traveling collection to their community.

“We were interested in the art and artists who gravitated [to East Hampton] for the cultural climate and who were drawn to the eastern coast of the U.S. to work as artists and be close to the epicenter of art in NYC,” AMST Curator of Exhibitions Deborah Fullerton wrote in an email.

Since its establishment in 1931, Guild Hall in East Hampton—with a permanent collection now numbering about 2,100 works of art—has been influential in shaping and reflecting the East End art community. Its museum, theater, and educational programs see more than 40,000 visitors each year. Now, thanks to this traveling exhibition of works from the permanent collection, people in other parts of the country are able to share in the history and evolution of the visual arts scene on Long Island’s East End.

As much as this show celebrates the artists and their work, it also serves as a history lesson on the East Hampton art colony. The 60 artists showcased have all played a role in making East Hampton flourish as an art and culture hub for more than a century.

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"Moon and Sea" by April Gornik, 1991. Aquatint, 23 x 18 inches. Gift of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke. Courtesy of Guild Hall.

"Moon and Sea" by April Gornik, 1991. Aquatint, 23 x 18 inches. Gift of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

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“It sort of tells a story,” Guild Hall Curatorial Assistant Stephanie Miller said in a phone interview. “It’s a historical exhibition explaining not just the history of Guild Hall and the history of the collection, but also the various ways of the art colony starting. The really early one was Thomas Moran and then the abstract expressionists, surrealists before that, and leading up to some of our contemporary artists.”

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"A Midsummer Day, East Hampton, Long Island" by Thomas Moran, 1903. Oil on canvas/board, 13 1/3 x 19 ½ inches. Purchased through the Art Acquisitions Fund. Photo by Gary Mamay. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

"A Midsummer Day, East Hampton, Long Island" by Thomas Moran, 1903. Oil on canvas/board, 13 1/3 x 19 ½ inches. Purchased through the Art Acquisitions Fund. Photo by Gary Mamay. Courtesy of Guild Hall, East Hampton, NY.

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As part of the educational aspect of the exhibition, Miller traveled to AMST for the January 27, 2017  opening to give a lecture on the art colony of East Hampton in The Hamptons. She pulled pieces from the show to illustrate the different art movements over time.

AMST prides itself on providing educational and outreach programs for people of all ages as well as for the school districts within a 75-mile radius of the city, Fullerton wrote, so this type of exhibition was a perfect fit to further achieve its mission.

“This exhibition has been a great draw for those familiar with American art and Modernism,” she wrote, “and as a teaching tool for those who wish to experience more of this time period in the development of American art history.”

Since 2007, this selection of art from the permanent collection has traveled to art centers and museums in such states as Florida, Louisiana, California, Colorado and Alabama as a way for Guild Hall to share its exceptional works of art with other parts of the country. The museum has partnered with the Los Angeles-based company Landau Traveling Exhibitions to transport the artworks to each venue. 

“It began as a way of broadening the reach of Guild Hall," Miller explained. "Certainly a lot of people can come here on vacation and they do, but not everybody can and not everybody does. This way, a lot of people that are in other parts of the country have a chance to see some of our artists—just have it come to them.”

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The exhibition space of "An Adventure in the Arts" in the Art Museum of South Texas' Chapman Gallery. Photo provided by AMST.

The exhibition space of "An Adventure in the Arts" in the Art Museum of South Texas' Chapman Gallery. Photo provided by AMST.

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Every host museum has the freedom to organize the show in its own way, but Miller noted that AMST curated the exhibition in a way that stood out from past shows.

“What was very interesting to see at the Art Museum of South Texas was that they took into account the architectural element of the interior of their space. They weren’t just grouped chronologically,” she said, adding that the gallery’s ceilings and diagonal lines were considered when arranging the artworks.

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BASIC FACTS: “Guild Hall: Adventures in the Arts - Selections from the Permanent Collection” is on view from January 17 to April 30, 2017 at the Art Museum of South Texas, 1902 North Shoreline Boulevard, Corpus Christi, TX 78401. www.artmuseumofsouthtexas.org.

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Anisah Abdullah is a freelance arts writer based in Stony Brook, NY. 

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Copyright 2017 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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