RALEIGH, NC.- The North Carolina Museum of Art
will again display the popular The Birds of America by John James Audubon starting Saturday, February 16, as part of its free permanent collection. Today only about 200 complete sets of The Birds of America exist in the world. The Museums set, bound in four volumes, was acquired by the State of North Carolina in 1846 and held at the State Library before being transferred to the Museum in 1974.
At the same time, the NCMA opens The Audubon Experience, an immersive video room adjacent to the gallery that surrounds the visitor with scenes from forests and jungles, mimicking what Audubon would have experienced in his travels throughout the world. Visitors will learn about the naturalists life and artistic process in the temporary experience, on view until September 15, 2019.
Were thrilled to have the beloved Audubon folios back on view, said Director Valerie Hillings, PhD. Audubons work captures the beauty and wonder of nature while also highlighting that it is subject to change over time. Many of the birds in the folios are now extinct, so The Birds of America and The Audubon Experience take the visitor on a journey to the past.
In the new Audubon Gallery in the Museums East Building, the NCMA presents Audubons work in special cases designed for each of the enormous double elephant volumes, with hydraulic lifts that allow staff to periodically turn pages to display a new selection of birds. The opening selections, beginning on page one of each volume, will remain on view until May 18, 2019, when the pages will be turned. The pages will again be turned August 17 and November 16, putting four new birds on display each time.
In celebration of the gallerys return, the NCMA is participating in the Audubon Societys Great Backyard Bird Count Saturday, February 16. The free event in the Ann and Jim Goodnight Museum Park features birdwatching, birding information from local experts, and a bird-inspired craft to take home. NCMA Learn, the NCMAs educational website for educators, students, and lifelong learners, features new lesson plans related to the folios so visitors of all ages can explore Audubons work.
Additional Upcoming Free Spring Exhibitions
Within the Frame
February 16July 21, 2019
East Building, Level B
Photography provides an opportunity to see what might otherwise be overlooked. Capitalizing on this concept, Within the Frame presents a collection of images that reveal hidden scenes within mirrors, frames, windowpanes, and other constructions. In Within the Frame, viewers enter some spaces through doorways, allowing for a deepening of the scope of a picture and the expansion of the story within an image. Windowpanes invite daydreaming, while reflective surfacesespecially mirrorswelcome contemplation of the self or questions of identity. Other works ask the viewer to consider the irony of a framed work of art within a photograph. Together the photographs in Within the Frame evoke ideas about photography that change the ways we think about the medium.
Artists in the exhibition include David Simonton, Nan Goldin, Alec Soth, Kristina Rogers, Pamela Pecchio, Elliott Erwitt, Uta Barth, John Menapace, Luis Rey Velasco, Lee Friedlander, Allen Frame, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, and Joyce Tenneson, among others.
Sayler/Morris: Their World Is Not Our World
February 16July 7, 2019
East Building, Level B
In Susannah Sayler and Edward Morriss video installation Their World Is Not Our World, a photographer and her smitten assistant document the Oostvaardersplassen, a fantastical manmade wilderness about 20 miles from Amsterdam. In connecting with the animals that make this nature reserve their home, the artists blur the boundaries between control and freedom, highlighting the human desire for connection even to those different from us.
Susannah Sayler and Edward Morris also are creating three new images for our Park Pictures billboards, on view in the Museum Park in spring 2019, merging contemporary art with the wilderness at the NCMA.