Arts Society & Culture

GMOA to host panel discussion on art, Great Depression

Athens, Ga. – The Georgia Museum of Art at the University of Georgia will host a panel discussion on Jan. 13 at 6 p.m. in the M. Smith Griffith Auditorium on how the works of artists Clare Leighton and Dale Nichols relate to the Great Depression.

The discussion will feature Jonathan Stuhlman, curator of American art at the Mint Museum of Art in Charlotte, N.C., and of “Quiet Spirit, Skillful Hand: The Graphic Work of Clare Leighton,” as well as Amanda Mobley Guenther, associate curator at the Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art in David City, Neb., and curator of “Dale Nichols: Transcending Regionalism.”

Both exhibitions-“Quiet Spirit, Skillful Hand” and “Dale Nichols”-will be open for viewing in GMOA’s galleries the night of the event. A reception will follow the discussion, and both are free and open to the public.

Art at the time of the Great Depression often conveyed social messages and focused on the dignity of labor, aspects visible in both Leighton’s and Nichols’ work. Paul Manoguerra, GMOA’s chief curator and curator of American art, will moderate the discussion.

“This panel provides our patrons with the opportunity to not only hear from two scholars of American art about the specific exhibitions the Georgia Museum of Art is displaying, but to also learn about two under-appreciated artists-one male and one female-of the 20th century,” Manoguerra said.

Stuhlman has served as guest curator for several exhibitions, including at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. He is the author of the exhibition catalogue “Georgia O’Keeffe: Circling Around Abstraction.” Previously, he was curator of American art at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Fla.

Guenther is originally from Grass Valley, Calif. She is the author of the exhibition catalogue “Dale Nichols: Transcending Regionalism” and has organized several previous exhibitions in the Great Plains region.

“Quiet Spirit, Skillful Hand: The Graphic Work of Clare Leighton” focuses on Leighton’s work from her earliest prints in the 1920s to her rare watercolors and a set of 12 Wedgwood plates titled “New England Industries.” Leighton, a native of London, England, immigrated to the U.S. in the 1940s and established herself as an illustrator and practitioner of wood engravings.

The Leighton exhibition is on display at GMOA through Feb. 3 in the Boone and George-Ann Knox I, Rachel Cosby Conway, Alfred Heber Holbrook and Charles B. Presley Family Galleries.

“Dale Nichols: Transcending Regionalism” serves as a retrospective of the artist’s career and examines his ability to take regionalist art past basic American scenery and through a wide breadth of subjects. Nichols, born in David City, Neb., is known best for his depictions of American agrarian life around the 1930s and 1940s.

The Nichols exhibition will be on display at GMOA from Dec. 17 to Feb. 27 in the Virginia and Alfred Kennedy Gallery.

Museum Information
Partial support for the exhibitions and programs at the Georgia Museum of Art is provided by the Georgia Council for the Arts through appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The council is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Individuals, foundations and corporations provide additional museum support through their gifts to the University of Georgia Foundation. The Georgia Museum of Art is located at 90 Carlton Street in the Performing and Visual Arts Complex on the East Campus of the University of Georgia. For more information, including hours, see or call 706/542-4662.