Time has a way of flying by. Just ask the staff of the Parrish Art Museum who just announced plans for a weekend of celebrations to mark five years in their Herzog & de Meron-designed building in Water Mill, NY. Taking place November 10 to 12, 2017, the museum will unveil specially curated exhibitions in their permanent galleries along with a weekend of events, artist talks, a benefit cocktail party, a community day filled with free events and more to mark the occasion.

“It is hard to believe that we opened to the public five years ago,” noted Parrish Art Director Terri Sultan in the announcement. “This has been a transformational period for the museum and the community, and we are thrilled to both celebrate this accomplishment and look to the future.”

Permanent Gallery Exhibition "Five and Forward" Opens

The most visual of the celebratory weekend is the reinstallation of the seven permanent galleries in the museum. Linked together under the umbrella exhibition "Five and Forward," the exhibition features three solo shows, three group ones and nearly 100 artworks. The exhibition will be on view November 10, 2017 to October 31, 2018.

Taken as a whole, the exhibition takes a examined look at artists whose work represents major trends, themes and concepts in American art history while underscoring the ongoing artistic legacy of Long Island’s East End, according to the museum.

"The Shinnecock Years," a solo show by William Merritt Chase (1849 - 1916), features key paintings from the late 1880s to 1900. Chase founded an en plein air art school in Southampton in 1891 for artists seeking to capture the region’s light and landscape. In the Studio, ca. 1900, is a depiction of his own studio in Shinnecock Hills. The artist’s masterwork, The Big Bayberry Bush (The Bayberry Bush), ca. 1895, will be on view following an international tour. The exhibition also presents archival photographs of Chase and his family at their home in the Spine Gallery.

"James Brooks" features 12 paintings from the 1940s to the 1980s that illustrate the Abstract Expressionism painter's experimentation and risk taking in his art, all part of a recent donation by the James and Charlotte Brooks Foundation. James Brooks (1906-1992), a key figure in late 20th century American art, lived on the East End for decades with his wife, the artist Charlotte Park.

"Alan Shields: Common Threads" highlights the artist's life-long engagement with textiles and the needle arts through the selection of three decades of work. Alan Shields (1944-2005) relocated to Shelter Island on the East End in the 1970s. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with an essay by Alicia G. Longwell, The Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Chief Curator at the Parrish.


"Devil, Devil, Love" by Alan Shields, 1970. Cotton belting, acrylic, thread, beads, and wood, 96 x 194 inches. Parrish Art Museum, Museum Purchase, Mr. and Mrs. Robert F. Carney Fund 2007.15. Photo: Gary Mamay.


In a new initiative, the Parrish invited artist Rashid Johnson (American, b.1977) to comb through its permanent collection and curate a show. Johnson first received critical attention at the age of 24 at the Freestyle exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem, has worked in photography, sculpture, and mixed media/video installation.

"Five and Forward" also presents themed exhibitions. They include "WOOD[S]," which explores the topic as both a material and subject, and "The Nature of Abstraction," an exhibition featuring works that represent a broad range of approaches to abstraction that span nearly a half century (1954 - 2005) by a diverse group of artists and installed in two of the museum's permanent galleries.

Why wood? Wood is a significant element in the design and construction of the new Parrish Art Museum building as well as a tradition associated with a fifth anniversary, explained the museum. Through both painting and sculpture, "WOOD[S]" investigates this material as both a medium and an inspiration through a diverse line up of artists.

For instance, Esteban Vicente (1903–2001) elevated scraps of wood from his studio in Bridgehampton to create Divertimienti, small assemblages that transcend their humble materials. In the monumental 1965 triptych Green Separate by Robert Dash (1931–2013), who painted for decades at his home in Sagaponack, the woody earthiness of tree trunks and roots dominate a sparse landscape.

Special Events to Celebrate

The Anniversary Weekend includes a variety of programs and events in addition to the new exhibition. The celebration launches on Friday, November 10, at 6 p.m. with a conversation with Terrie Sultan and Architectural Record Editor in Chief Cathleen McGuigan held in the museum’s Lichtenstein Theater.

The Members’ Reception on Saturday, November 11, 2017 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. offers a preview of the exhibition with talks by artists on aspects of the exhibition, furthering the Museum’s mission to foster connections among art, artists, and the community.

An Anniversary Benefit Party takes place on Saturday, November 11, 2017 from 5 to 8 p.m. The Quintet of the Americas will perform Watercolors, a work composed by Nell Shaw Cohen for the Parrish’s grand opening in 2012. Watercolors was inspired by Charles Burchfield’s painting Glory of Spring (Radiant Spring), 1950, which is on view in the exhibition.

On Sunday, November 12, 2017, the Parrish will be free to the public. Open from 10 am to 5 p.m. activities will be scheduled from noon and 4 p.m. They include artist-led collaborative community art projects on the theme of building, art workshops for families, docent-led gallery tours and activities, performances including a marimba band, and refreshments.

Rewind from 2017 to 2012 - Parrish Reopens in Water Mill from Long Term Home in Southampton Village

On November 12, 2012, the Parrish Art Museum opened the doors to its new home, set on 14 acres in Water Mill, NY, relocating from its long-time location in Southampton Village on Jobs Lane. In the last five years, the Parrish has mounted over 100 collection installations and special exhibitions. In addition, it has added 421 acquisitions in all media to its collection, which now features more than 3,000 works, reported the museum.

In addition, the Parrish has produced over 550 public programs. In the past five years, more than 330,000 people have passed through the museum's doors to engage with their exhibitions, programs and events, according to the Parrish.

The design and construction of the Parrish was overseen by Sultan, who worked with Herzog & de Meuron to create a purpose-built museum that suggests the vernacular architecture of the sheds and barns appropriated as studios by generations of artists on the East End.

Thanks All Around

"Five and Forward Anniversary Weekend" and "Five and Forward" Permanent Collection Exhibition have been made possible, in part, by the generous support of The Coby Foundation, Garrett and Mary Moran, Charlotte Moss and Barry Friedberg, Jane and David Walentas, Vivian Haime Barg, Suzanne and Bob Cochran, and Thomas and Clelia Zacharias.

Corporate Sponsors J.P. Morgan Private Bank and Rechler Equity Partners have been integral to bringing the weekend to the public.

Getting the word out are Media Sponsor The Press News Group and Digital Media Sponsor Hamptons Art Hub

Additional support is supplied by Sonnier & Castle and Eleni’s cookies.


BASIC FACTS: The Parrish Art Museum is located at 279 Montauk Highway, Water Mill, NY 11976. For details, visit www.parrishart.org.

Currently on view in the front galleries is "From Lens to Eye to Hand: Photorealism 1969 to Today." To read a review of the exhibition for Hamptons Art Hub, click here.

10/27/17 Editor's Note: New York Times architecture critic Michael Kimmelman was originally scheduled to dialogue with Terri Sultan but unforeseen changes prevented him from appearing. The story has been changed to omit his name.

11/9/17 Editor's Note: The exhibition "History Paintings" was substituted for "The Nature of Abstraction" during installation, according to the museum. The story has been updated to reflect the change. Also, Architectural Record Editor in Chief Cathleen McGuigan was added as the featured panelist for Friday Night.


Copyright 2017 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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