The CU Art Museum’s permanent collection is built entirely through the generous philanthropic support of our donors, who donate acquisition funds and in-kind gifts of art to the collection. We express our deep gratitude to all of our donors.
Selected highlights of our many recent acquisitions include two works from the recent acquisition of a significant collection of 238 objects representing Neolithic China and Burma as well as the Shang Dynasty, Han Dynasty, Northern Wei Dynasty, Sui Dynasty, Tang Dynasty, Five Dynasties, Liao Dynasty, Jin Dynasty, and Song Dynasty. The donation of this major body of works strengthens the CU Art Museum’s burgeoning Asian collection and significantly contributes to the breadth of the museum’s ceramic collection, which includes examples from numerous Neolithic cultures as well as modern and contemporary works, many of which pay homage to earlier ceramic traditions. Gifted by Warren and Shirley King, this unique collection of jade, bronze, stoneware, earthenware, porcelain, and blackware will be readily available to art historians, scholars of Chinese and Burmese culture, ceramic specialists, and archaeologists. These objects will be actively and creatively used in CU Art Museum exhibitions and as part of ongoing educational programs and research endeavors to benefit both the general public and students. The collection will facilitate learning about China and Burma and the rich art and cultural history of these regions.
A recent alum, Laura Shill, gifted two recent photographic works to the collection. Both these works can be viewed in the CU Art Museum’s current exhibition Primal Seen: Selections from the CU Art Museum’s Collection of Photography. In her large-scale tintypes printed on aluminum plates, Laura Shill evokes and transforms the medium’s history, recasting the portrait studio as a feminine descendent of the itinerant 19th century photographer’s tent. Here, middle-class bodily propriety is subverted by theatricality and identities are humorously revealed and concealed for the camera with the aid of gender-bending costumes and provocative backdrops. The graceful pose of the veiled subject in the woods in Untitled Performance #6 (Robin on the Moon) creates an intriguing tension with that subject’s hermaphroditic attire.
Additionally gifted in 2012 was a collection of 44 Japanese and Chinese scholar’s rocks from Joan and George Dillon. This collection has also helped to broaden the CU Art Museum’s collection of Asian art.
Lastly and most recently, James Surls’ sculpture in the lobby of the CU Art Museum and featured in the exhibition Giving and Receiving: A Collaborative Exhibition of Contemporary Artists from China and the United States has been acquisitioned into the CU Art Museum’s Permanent Collection. This work has hung in the lobby of the CU Art Museum since its creation in 2011 and has been enjoyed by countless visitors who enter the museum.