Toledo Museum of Art

Toledo, OH

419-255-8000 or or 800-644-6862


Jim Dine: Past Present Future


If you had a chance to see the exhibition The Great American Pop Art Store: Multiples of the Sixties, you may have noticed works by the artist, Jim Dine. Beginning July 28 through October 8, 2000, the Toledo Museum of Art's Graphic Arts Galleries will highlight the graphic career of Jim Dine in a free exhibition called "Jim Dine: Past Present Future." The three-part exhibition focuses on the interaction of the artist with antiquities (past); with his contemporaries and physical environment (present); and with the pervasive theme of mortality and humanity (future), evident in much of Dine's work, especially his many self portraits.

Jim Dine (b. 1935) was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1958, he was lured away from the graduate program at Ohio University by the excitement of the New York art scene. Dine actively sought out and befriended many of his already established contemporaries, including Jasper Johns, Claes Oldenburg, Allan Kaprow, and Larry Rivers. There was an active exchange between these artists, sometimes resulting in a change of focus or content in an individual's work. (left: © Jim Dine 1973, Five Paintbrushes, 1973, etching on Hofgkinson hand-made paper, 30 x 39 5/8 inches, The Toledo Museum of Art, The Shoemaker Fund, 1973.21)

Dine is best known to visitors of the Toledo Museum of Art for the bronze sculpture The Crommelynck Gate with Tools (TMA 1984.77), which features cast representations of tools welded into its structure. Famous for his numerous renderings of tools, bathrobes, hearts, and gates, Dine often interprets these objects as personal metaphors, reflecting his continued self-analysis and quest to understand his own psyche. The resultant images are often dark and reworked and cover the entire surface with little or no background.

The art historian David Shapiro has used the term "American Darkness" to characterize Dine's style. Shapiro believes that Dine and Jasper Johns share many of the same sensibilities and that their work is in contrast to 19th century American Luminism, which strove to depict the qualities of light seen in expansive landscapes. Examples of American Luminism at the Toledo Museum include Albert Bierstadt's, El Capitan, Yosemite Valley, California (TMA 1959.18) and Sanford Robinson Gifford's, Lake Nemi (TMA 1957.46).

The exhibition "Jim Dine: Past Present Future" includes over 50 prints, drawings, and books from the Museum's permanent collection, most made after 1970. The Toledo Museum of Art will feature the 1996 mixed media series, Twenty Drawings of a Roman Boy (TMA 1996.12 a-t), along with the famous bronze sculpture, Statue of a Youth (TMA 1966.126), on which they are based. The exhibition is open during regular Museum hours and admission is free. (left: Twenty Drawings of a Roman Boy, 1996, mixed media, The Toledo Museum of Art, 1996.12 a-t)


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This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 3/18/11

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