Some Spaniards in the works

‘El Greco to Velázquez’ at the MFA, ‘Artadia Boston’ at the Mills Gallery, Harmonious Noise on the Roof at Tufts, and Animal Estates at MIT’s CAVS
April 7, 2008 2:00:18 PM
El Greco, View of Toledo

With his elongated forms and spiritual intensity, Greek-born Domenikos Theotokopoulos — El Greco (1541–1614) — is often seen as expressing the passion of Counter-Reformation Spain; over the past century, his work has continued to resonate because of its modern feel. El Greco painted his fine late work in Spain in the early years of the reign of Philip III, who ruled from 1598 until 1621. Diego Velázquez (1599–1660) was also associated with Philip III’s court, where the artist honed his signature naturalism. “EL GRECO TO VELÁZQUEZ: ART DURING THE REIGN OF PHILIP III,” which opens at the Museum of Fine Arts on April 20, shows seminal work by these artists in an art-historical context and introduces us to work by lesser-known 17th-century Spaniards including Juan Bautista Maino, Juan Sánchez Cotán, and Francisco Ribalta.

“ANTONIO LÓPEZ GARCÍA” carries on the tradition of Spanish realism in a concurrent MFA exhibition opening on April 13, with paintings, drawings, and sculpture. This contemporary (born in 1936) artist focuses his keen eye on the prosaic — from a bathroom sink to his family and friends.

Back in the ’hood, the Mills Gallery at the Boston Center for the Arts hosts work by 10 Boston-based artists who received awards from the national grant-making organization Artadia last year. Opening April 18, “ARTADIA BOSTON 2007” features Hannah Barrett, Gerry Bergstein, John Osorio-Buck, Xiaowei Chen, Jane Marsching, Helen Mirra, the National Bitter Melon Council, Mary Ellen Strom, and Stephen Tourlentes.

“El Greco To Velázquez” and “Antonio López García” at Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave, Boston | April 20–July 27 (“El Greco”) and April 13–July 27 (“López García”) | 617.267.9300

“Artadia Boston 2007” at Mills Gallery, 539 Tremont St, Boston | April 18–June 15 | 617.426.5000

“Harmony in the Age Of Noise” at Tisch Library roof, Tufts University, Medford | April 17–late spring |

Fritz Haeg at MIT’s CAVS, 265 Mass Ave [third floor], Cambridge | April 16 at 6:30 pm | 617.253.4415
An interactive sonic art installation is about to come into being on the roof of the Tisch Library at Tufts University, where more than 100 students, faculty, and staff from areas as diverse as ethnomusicology and engineering are gathering to create “HARMONY IN THE AGE OF NOISE.” The collaboration is headed up by Tufts anthropology professor David Guss and sound artist and composer Bruce Odland. Opening to the public on April 17, the installation will consist of “an interactive sonic observatory housed in a large parabolic gazebo . . . where a ‘sound dial’ is used to navigate through a harmonized mix of a real-time sonic feed, a collection of stored psychoacoustic maps, and visitors’ sounds programmed to play like hourly chimes.” The piece will remain “open” throughout the spring.

If you wondered about the beaver lodge and the mud-turtle crib down in the Whitney Museum’s moat while standing in line to see the current Whitney Biennial, you aren’t alone. FRITZ HAEG, creator of the “Animal Estate Project,” which invites animals once indigenous to particular areas (like the corner of 75th Street and Madison Avenue in New York) to come back home to nest and rest, talks about his artistic practice at MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies on April 16.

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  • IN OUR NATURE:   Frank Gohlke at the Addison, ‘Pulp Function’ at the Worcester Center for Crafts, and ‘Expanded Sculpture 2’ at 119 Gallery
  • LINES OF INQUIRY:   ‘On Drawing’ at the New Art Center, Gateway Arts at Simmons, Jeff Koons at Harvard, and Jenny Saville at BU
  • TRYING TO PLACE IT:   “New England Survey” at the PRC, American Mobility at Gasp, 18th-Century Porcelain at the Busch-Reisinger, and Viktor Schreckengost in Attleboro
  • NAUGHTY BY NATURE:   Spring Arts Preview: Landscape, road trips, weddings, and Spain
  • SIZING THINGS UP:   Monumental Prints and Small Ponds at the Davis Museum, ‘Art and Math’ at Axiom, Glass Sea Creatures at Harvard, and New Rationalists at Proof
  • YOUR HISTORY:   ‘Impermanence’ at the Essex Art Center, ‘Two Chinas’ at WAM, Renée Green at the Carpenter Center, and Feminism at the MFA
  • LIGHTING UP:   Moyra Davey at the Fogg, ‘Two or Three Things I Know about Her’ at the Carpenter Center, and Arno Rafael Minkkinen at BU
  • SKIN DEEP:   ‘Maori Tattoo’ at the Peabody Essex, Jim Henderson and Ann Torke at Boston Sculptors, and Student Shows at the MFA and SMFA
  • TIME IS ON MY SIDE:   David Claerbout at MIT, Children at the DeCordova, Kabuki Theater at the Peabody Essex, and more

  • GROWING UP: The mature art of longtime Maine artists
  • DISTINCTIVE DESIGN: Malcolm Grear at RIC; plus, Roger Mayer’s ‘Soundless’
  • THINKING SMALL: A local collective subverts with the tiny
  • IN OUR NATURE: Frank Gohlke at the Addison, ‘Pulp Function’ at the Worcester Center for Crafts, and ‘Expanded Sculpture 2’ at 119 Gallery
  • STILLNESS: Floating in the world of Japanese prints
  • UGLY BEAUTY: The RISD Museum showcases ‘Stryrofoam’
  • LINES OF INQUIRY: ‘On Drawing’ at the New Art Center, Gateway Arts at Simmons, Jeff Koons at Harvard, and Jenny Saville at BU
  • BAD-BOY COOL: ‘Street Level’ at the ICA, plus Ranjani Shettar and David Claerbout
  • ‘BEINGS’ THERE: New exhits at the Stairwell, Bannister, and URI galleries

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