Josef Albers

The RIT Murals
Date and Time
-
Location
RIT Cary Graphic Arts Collection
Image Gallery
Details

Josef Albers (1888–1976) was part of the select group of artists who were commissioned in the 1960s to create original works to beautify RIT’s “new” Henrietta campus, which opened in 1968. These art pieces were diverse, including metal sculptures situated along walkways, abstract tapestries swathed on walls, and ceramic tableau that interrupted the rectilinear Brutalist modern architecture. Albers’ two contributions to this RIT campus art collection are so integrated into the specificity of each site, that his artworks are often overlooked by people passing by. They are the patterned brick Loggia Wall mural on the north façade of Thomas Gosnell Hall, and the massive square murals entitled Growth and Youth in the lobby of George Eastman Hall. After decades of quiet witness, these pieces have endured to be among the most monumental of Albers’ career.

Albers came to the RIT commission with the highest credentials: a master painter, former professor at the avant garde Bauhaus school in Germany, professor emeritus from Yale University, and acclaimed author of The Interaction of Color. His RIT murals are the summation of his experiences as a mature artist. This exhibition celebrates the artworks’ 50th anniversary by narrating their history amidst the backdrop of Albers’ stimulating artistic work in color theory. Artifacts from the RIT Archives will be complemented by Albers' colorful prints, held in the Cary Graphic Arts Collection.

—Amelia Hugill-Fontanel, Associate Curator

Exhibition Events

"In Color/ With Emily," by Sue Huggins Leopard
Saturday, April 6, 2019, 1:30 p.m.

Cary Graphic Arts Collection, 2nd floor, RIT Libraries

The Cary is pleased to host the organization of Just Poets in exploring the poems of Emily Dickinson through the art of the book. "In Color/ With Emily," will be presented by Sue Huggins Leopard, where she will talk about her series of miniature books in conversation with and in response to poems by Dickinson that especially focus on color. Free & open to the public.

"In Conversation, Josef Albers," Reception and Panel Discussion
Wednesday, April 10, 2019, 5:30 p.m.
RIT George Eastman Hall, lobby and room 2000

Reception: Eastman Hall, lobby at 5:30 p.m.
Conversation: Eastman Hall, room 2000 at 6:30 p.m.

Josef Albers (1888–1976) was part of the select group of artists commissioned to create original works to beautify RIT’s “new” Henrietta campus, which opened in 1968. His two contributions to this art collection are the patterned brick Loggia Wall mural on the north façade of Gosnell Hall, and the square paintings entitled Growth and Youth in the lobby of Eastman Hall. After decades of quiet witness, these pieces have emerged to be among the most monumental of Albers’ career. You are invited to a conversation about the history of these artworks, as well as discussion on Josef Albers’ lasting impact in the fields of art education.

Albers Conversation Panel
Rebecca Aloisio is a professor in the RIT College of Art and Design. She is a practicing artist working in a variety of media including painting, drawing, digital printing, and serigraphy. Her artwork is collected and exhibited internationally.
Mark Fairchild is the director of the Program of Color Science and Munsell Color Science Laboratory. Teaching at RIT for 33 years, he specializes in understanding the perception of color in complex environments and individual differences in color vision.
James Hamm is professor emeritus of the Patricia and Richard Garman Art Conservation Department at Buffalo State College, where he taught the paintings conservation curriculum for 32 years. In the 1990s, he was responsible for performing a conservation treatment on the RIT Homage to the Square murals in the Eastman Lobby.
Amelia Fontanel, associate curator of the Cary Collection, will serve as the host and moderator.

Refreshments provided. Free & open to the public.