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The Vilcek Foundation Presents Ralston Crawford: Torn Signs

An inaugural exhibition at the new Vilcek Foundation headquarters features the later works of modernist artist, Ralston Crawford, through a variety of mediums. On view from May 13 to November 13.

Torn Signs, (1966) © Estate of Ralston Crawford/VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.

The Vilcek Foundation presents Ralston Crawford: Torn Signs as the opening exhibition in its new Upper East Side gallery space. “We chose to inaugurate our gallery space with an exhibition of an American artist whose early work is widely celebrated, but whose later work has been, until recently, relatively under-exhibited and under-known,” says Vilcek Foundation president Rick Kinsel. “This exhibition charts the influence of war, travel, and cross-cultural exchange on Crawford’s mid- and later-life work, in particular exploring the way he was influenced by post-war art in France and Spain.”

This exhibition examines the confluence of two seemingly disparate series completed later in Crawford’s life, Torn Signs and Semana Santa. Though their subject matter is drastically different—one is inspired by tattered advertisements on the streets of New York, while the other depicts observers of Holy Week in Seville, Spain—Crawford connects them through his extraordinary visual memory, working method, and sense of spatial organization.

Organized by curator Emily Schuchardt Navratil, Ralston Crawford: Torn Signs presents paintings, drawings, and photographs from the foundation’s American Modernism Collection alongside loans from John Crawford, one of the artist’s sons.

Ralston Crawford: Torn Signs marks the opening of the Vilcek Foundation’s new headquarters, a five-story landmark structure renovated by Architecture Research Office. The site will host exhibitions including holdings in American Modernism, Native American pottery, and Pre-Columbian art. The opening coincides with several new initiatives, including additions to the Vilcek Foundation Prize program, awarded to immigrants in the arts and sciences.

Ralston Crawford: Torn Signs will be on view through November 13, 2019.  The Vilcek Foundation (21 East 70th Street, New York, NY) will be open to the public on Mondays and Wednesdays from 11 am – 3 pm, through scheduled viewing appointments; visitors can sign up at vilcek.org. There is no admission charge.

For more information, visit www.vilcek.org/gallery/on-view.