A Preview of Museum Exhibitions Opening in Houston this Fall

by Jessica Fuentes September 7, 2023

Last month the Glasstire team shared our top picks of exhibitions to see across Texas this fall. Now that we are solidly into the fall season, here is an overview of shows coming to Houston-area museums and organizations, including the Blaffer Museum of Art, The Menil Collection, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and more.

An installation image of a work by Laure Prouvost featuring binoculars scattered on a shore-like creation with sculpted birds standing in the distance.

Laure Prouvost, “Above Front Tears Oui Float,” 2022. The National Museum Oslo, Norway. Photo by Nasjonalmuseet/Annar Bjørgli.

Next week The Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University opens its fall exhibition Laure Prouvost: Above Front Tears Nest in South. The show, which features multiple large-scale installations and video works, marks Ms. Prouvost’s first solo exhibition in Texas. Exploring themes such as eco-feminism and environmentalism, the artist draws inspiration from real and fabricated personal memories.

Laure Prouvost: Above Front Tears Nest in South will be on view at the Moody Center for the Arts from September 15 through December 14, 2023.

A photograph of a person seated on the floor in the distance.

A recording session at the Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern. 2023 Project commissioned by the Blaffer Art Museum and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts.

Later this month, the Blaffer Art Museum, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, will present Lifeblood, a newly commissioned work by multidisciplinary Mexican artist Tania Candiani. The work has been developed out of an intermittent eight-month residency sponsored by the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts at the University of Houston. During her time in Houston, Ms. Candiani has been researching the history of the people and the land and how the area has been affected by the shifts and changes of waterways. 

Tania Candiani: Lifeblood will be on view at the Blaffer from September 22 through November 19, 2023.

Additionally, in October, the group exhibition Intimate confession is a project will go on view at the Blaffer. Organized by guest curator and writer Jennifer Teets, the show brings together artists whose works consider how cultural information is passed through generations. Featured artists include Gwenneth Boelens, Benvenuto Chavajay Ixtetela, ektor garcia, Lonnie Holley, Anna Mayer, Na Mira, Kate Newby, Josie Ann Teets, Roberto Tejada, Chiffon Thomas, Iris Touliatou, and Clémence de la Tour du Pin. 

Intimate confession is a project will be on view at the Blaffer from October 27, 2023 through March 10, 2024.

An installation image of a large-scale sculpture by Chryssa. The scupture is made from metal, neon, and plexiglass.

Chryssa, “The Gates to Times Square,” 1964-66, welded stainless steel, neon, and Plexiglas, 120 x 120 x 120 inches. Collection Buffalo AKG Art Museum. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Albert A. List, 1972.

On Friday, September 29, The Menil Collection will open Chryssa & New York, an exhibition organized in collaboration with the Dia Art Foundation. The show, which first debuted at Dia Chelsea earlier this year, is the first major exhibition of Greek-born artist Chryssa’s work in the U.S. since 1982. The exhibition focuses on works made by the artist from the late 1950s to the early 1970s, while she was living in New York City. 

In a press release, Michelle White, Senior Curator at The Menil Collection, noted, “Chryssa was a leader within avant-garde circles while she lived in New York. She was fascinated with the sparkling and text filled space of Times Square and wanted her innovative body of work to capture the energy of this unique postwar environment. By radically bringing together actual materials from the square, including lights and letters, Chryssa’s art stands as an early example of work that takes commercial communication as its primary subject.”

Chryssa & New York will be on view at the Menil from September 29, 2023 through March 10, 2024.

Side-by-side black and white photographs of long stretches of empty roads by artists Robert Frank and Todd Webb.

Robert Frank, “U.S. 285, New Mexico.” / Todd Webb, “Between Lovelock and Fernley, NV.”

This October, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) presents Robert Frank and Todd Webb: Across America, 1955, an exhibition that, for the first time, brings together works by two photographers who embarked on similar journeys at the same time. In 1955, artists Robert Frank and Todd Webb each received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation to trek across the U.S. Mr. Frank’s trip was taken via car and resulted in his book The Americans, while Mr. Webb’s journey was by foot, boat, and bike. 

In a press release announcing the show earlier this year, exhibition organizer Lisa Volpe, the MFAH’s Curator of Photography, remarked, “It’s eye-opening to put these projects side-by-side for the first time. It reveals the humanity in Webb’s work, and the underrecognized, but profound hope in Frank’s photographs.”

Robert Frank and Todd Webb: Across America, 1955 will be on view at the MFAH from October 8, 2023 through January 7, 2024.

A painting by Rembrandt van Rijn of a woman dressed as royalty and holding a septer.

Rembrandt van Rijn, “Juno,” c. 1662–65, oil on canvas. Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, the Armand Hammer Collection, gift of the Armand Hammer Foundation.

Also in October, the MFAH brings works from the Hammer Museum at the University of California in Los Angeles to Houston. Rembrandt to Van Gogh: Masterpieces from the Armand Hammer Collection, will showcase major works from across four centuries. 

Gary Tinterow, Director, the Margaret Alkek Williams Chair at the MFAH, commented, “Armand Hammer had a fascinating career as a businessman and art collector that spanned most of the 20th century. The museum he founded in Los Angeles boasts some of the most important European and American paintings among all the museums in the country. We are pleased to present to our audiences the highlights of that collection, shown together outside Los Angeles for the very first time in this century.” 

Rembrandt to Van Gogh: Masterpieces from the Armand Hammer Collection will be on view at the MFAH from October 15, 2023 through January 21, 2024.

An installation photograph of a sculpture and paintings by Kehinde Wiley featuring young Black people who have been slain.

Kehinde Wiley, “The Young Tarentine (Mamadou Gueye), after Alexandre Schoenewerk’s 1871 sculpture,” 2021, bronze. Moco Museum, courtesy of Templon, Paris–Brussels–New York. © Kehinde Wiley

In November, the MFAH will present Kehinde Wiley: An Archaeology of Silence, an exhibition organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. The exhibition expands on Mr. Wiley’s series Down, which features portraits of young Black people killed around the world in a style inspired by Hans Holbein the Younger’s painting The Dead Christ in the Tomb. Additionally An Archaeology of Silence includes new works created by the artist during the COVID-19 pandemic and the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement in response to police killings of Black people.

Kehinde Wiley: An Archaeology of Silence will be on view at the MFAH from November 19, 2023 through June 19, 2024.

A black and white photograph of a 1948 installation of contemporary art.

Installation view of “This Is Contemporary Art,” organized by the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (then Contemporary Arts Association) at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 1948. Photo by Frank Dolejska. Image courtesy Woodson Research Center Special Collections & Archives, Fondren Library at Rice University.

Also in October, as part of the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston’s (CAMH) 75th anniversary, the museum will present Six Scenes From Our Future. The exhibition will feature works by six artists whom CAMH has invited to respond to the museum’s inaugural 1948 exhibition, This is Contemporary Art. The selected artists, Mel Chin, JooYoung Choi, Leslie Hewitt, Lisa Lapinski, Jill Magid, and Leslie Martinez, work in a variety of mediums, including sculpture, photography, video, and painting. The decision to select six artists reflects the institution’s history, as it was founded by six artists and architects from Houston.

CAMH Curator Patricia Restrepo, who is organizing the show, said, “It is thrilling that even in CAMH’s retrospective mode of reflecting on our upcoming anniversary milestone, we are harnessing a future oriented methodology. We are entrusting our history, and in turn our future, in the hands of a group of wildly-inventive, materially-diverse, and inimitable artists who welcomed this invitation as an opportunity to stretch their practices. Six Scenes From Our Future honors our inaugural show’s demonstration that contemporary art and design are integral to living.” 

Six Scenes From Our Future will be on view at CAMH from October 27, 2023 through March 17, 2024.

See a full list of current and upcoming exhibitions on view at Houston art spaces this fall.

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