The High Museum of Art in Atlanta

The High Museum of Art in Atlanta

It’s only early March, but the High Museum of Art has already set the stage for some incredible programming and opportunities for art lovers in the city. From new exhibits to installations and special events, there is something for everyone at the High. Let’s get into it.

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (Iranian, 1922–2019), Untitled (Muquarnas), 2012, mirror, reverse-glass painting, plaster on wood. High Museum of Art, purchase with funds from the Farideh & Al Azadi Foundation, 2019. 174. © Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (Iranian, 1922–2019), Untitled (Muquarnas), 2012, mirror, reverse-glass painting, plaster on wood. High Museum of Art, purchase with funds from the Farideh & Al Azadi Foundation, 2019. 174.

Credit: Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian

The season kicks off with Monir Farmanfarmaian: A Mirror Garden which is currently on view through April 9. This showcase is the first posthumous exhibition at an American museum for one of Iran’s most celebrated visual artists, Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (1922-2019). She is known the world over for her geometric mirror sculptures that evoke Persian architectural motifs and patterns in postwar abstraction. This show was inspired by the High’s 2019 acquisition of the cut-mirror sculpture “Untitled (Muqarnas)” (2012) and the 2014 drawing “Untitled (Circles and Squares).” The exhibition features sculptures, drawings, textiles, and collages from four decades of Farmanfarmaian’s work. 

Another current exhibition is Joseph Stella: Visionary Nature with works by Italian-born American modernist Joseph Stella (1877–1946). Commonly known for his dynamic Futurist-inspired paintings of New York as well as depictions of the natural world, more than 100 of Stella’s paintings and works on paper will be on display at the High Museum through May 21. The exhibit also includes a graphic timeline of Stella’s career and a short film. 

March 10 will be the first of a new evening program series, Oasis, which seeks to help visitors embrace the present through mind, body, and spirit with the assistance of art activations. Oasis will take place on the second Friday of each month with a variety of mindful experiences dedicated to offering new perspectives on life and art, cultivating a community centered around art, and contemplative art practices. The theme for the March event is “Nature as Refuge” which was inspired by the current Joseph Stella exhibit. Activities for the evening include a sound bath with Margo Gomes, an in-gallery discussion with Dr. Taj Anwar Baoll and Carlton Mackey, and a floral still life drawing session on the High’s Orkin Terrace. Yoga sessions with mats included will be held throughout the evening. Admission is free for members and $25 for non-members, with advance registration available through the website

Evelyn Hofer: Eyes on the City opens on March 24 through Aug. 13. Hofer was a German American photographer whose career spanned five decades. Her legacy includes a series of photobooks from the 1960s that depict European and American cities including Florence, London, New York City, Washington, D.C., Dublin, and one based on Spain. More than 100 vintage prints in black and white as well as color will be included in this artist’s first major showcase in the United States for over 50 years.

George Voronovsky (Ukrainian-American, 1903–1982), Untitled (Flock of Geese), 1978–1982, acrylic on canvas, 24 x 30 inches, courtesy of the Monroe Family Collection. © George Voronovsky. Photo courtesy of High Museum of Art.

George Voronovsky (Ukrainian-American, 1903–1982), Untitled (Flock of Geese), 1978–1982, acrylic on canvas, 24 x 30 inches, courtesy of the Monroe Family Collection.

Credit: Photo courtesy of High Museum of Art

The High Museum presents George Voronovsky: Memoryscapes opening on March 24 through Aug. 13. This exhibition marks the first major museum presentation of the late Ukrainian American artist George Voronovsky. Voronovsky immigrated from his small eastern Ukranian village to the United States after World War II where he found work in the rail industry in Philadelphia as a train car cleaner and upholsterer. When he retired to Miami Beach he transformed his South Beach’s Colony Hotel into an art refuge that included carved Styrofoam sculptures, modified tin cans, and paintings on cardboard and canvas. Voronovksy’s work unites his memories of his homeland with a more modern, neon aesthetic. Expect to see sculptures made from objects such as coolers and pizza boxes that he found on local beaches. Florida-based collector and photographer Gary Monroe will share not only his collection of Voronovky’s works but also photos of the artist and his vibrant artistic home. 

On April 4, 2023, the High Museum of Art will offer a day of free admission for all visitors aged 50 and older. The Lifelong Learning Celebration event will include guided tours of Joseph Stella: Visionary Nature and Monir Farmanfarmaian: A Mirror Garden, gallery discussions, art-making workshops, pop-up performances of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and more. Individuals can reserve up to 4 tickets for this event by registering at this link

Tanya Aquiñiga (American, born 1978), HAPPY JOYLANTA, 2023, rendering, courtesy of Tanya Aquiñiga. © Tanya Aquiñiga.

Tanya Aquiñiga (American, born 1978), HAPPY JOYLANTA, 2023, rendering.

Credit: Tanya Aquiñiga.

This summer, the High Museum will debut their newest site-specific installation HAPPY JOYLANTA on the piazza. Designed by Tanya Aquiñiga, this immersive experience will include a monumental canopy that will serve as a community-based art project. Expect signs, symbols, and memories that reflect the diversity of Atlantans and their communities. This installation represents a continuation of the High’s multiyear series of inclusive commissions that activate their outdoor space and encourage community engagement. The installation will debut on May 14 and remain on view through Nov. 26, 2023. 

Inlay eyes from coffin, 593–568 BCE, bronze, travertine (Egyptian alabaster), Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition. Photo © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Inlay eyes from coffin, 593–568 BCE, bronze, travertine (Egyptian alabaster), Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition.

Credit: Photo © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Also this summer, the High Museum of Art presents “Ancient Nubia: Art of the 25th Dynasty from the Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston” which will open June 2 and run through Sept. 3. Featuring more than 200 masterworks drawn from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, which is the largest and most comprehensive collection of ancient Nubian art and material outside of Africa, the exhibit will feature pottery, amulets, jewelry, funerary figurines, and more. This exhibit will highlight the talents and innovation of Nubian makers within the context of one of the largest empires of the ancient world. 

On June 23 a new exhibition, “Samurai: Armor from the Collection of Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller”, will feature more than 150 helmets, swords, and other objects in one of the most important collections of samurai armor outside of Japan. Spanning almost nine centuries, the exhibition will showcase the high level of design and craft used to create these suits of armor used both in battle and in ceremony. The High Museum of Art is the first museum in the Southeastern United States to present this collection which has been organized by the Ann & Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum. 

Opening Sept. 1, “In the City of Light: Paris, 1850-1920” will present an illustrated guide to the architecture, people, and culture of Paris during the latter half of the 19th century and early 20th century. Works by Théophile Steinlen, Henri-Gabriel Ibels, Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, Honoré Daumier, and Édouard Vuillard among others offer an insight into Parisian life. Visitors can enjoy prints, drawings, photographs, and sculptures from the High’s permanent collection, the Collection of Dr. and Mrs. Michael Schlossberg, and the Collection of Dr. and Mrs. Robert Gaynes. Expect to see depictions of a kaleidoscope of Parisian life from the bustling markets and boulevards to the dancers at the Folies Bergère. On view through Dec. 31. 

“A Long Arc: Photography and the American South since 1850” opens at the High Museum of Art on Sept. 15 and runs through Jan. 14, 2024. Representing the first major survey of Southern photography in more than two decades, the exhibition seeks to highlight the complicated and storied relationship between Southerners and the medium of photography. The exhibition will include a wide span of historical photography including the Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement all the way through to contemporary photographers who seek to capture Southern existence and identity in their work today. 

On Oct. 13 the “Beatrix Potter: Drawn to Nature” exhibit will debut at the High. Potter is one of the most renowned, familiar, and beloved children’s book authors of the 20th century, and this exhibition will include more than 100 personal objects that offer an insight into her life. Sketches, watercolors, letters, diaries, paintings, books, and more will be on display during this exhibition. This exhibition is a continuation of the High’s efforts to highlight picture books, or art in books, which is bringing some very exclusive collections to the city. Exhibition on display through Jan. 7, 2024. 

Room-sized installations of fiber art by artist Sonya Clark are sure to amaze and engage. Opening Oct. 27 and running through Feb. 28, 2024, “Sonya Clark: We Are Each Other” is the first survey of Clark’s work in Atlanta, New York, and Detroit. The opening will also activate a multi-year participatory project occurring in each city for the first time. Clark’s work pairs photography and fiber art to generate conversation about racism and oppression in America. The exhibit is co-organized by the High Museum of Art, the Cranbrook Art Museum, and the Museum of Art and Design. 

Author’s note: the above events are listed in an advance calendar which are subject to change. I recommend that visitors check the website or give them a call before heading to the museum just in case.

This story comes to GPB through a reporting partnership with Rough Draft Atlanta.