John Cage + the Rasa Aesthetic: Prepared Piano at BMCM+AC

John Cage + the Rasa Aesthetic: Prepared Piano at BMCM+AC

Guest blog post from Casey Edwards On Thursday, August 2, 2019, the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center had the pleasure of hosting Guggenheim Fellow Amy Williams for a recital of John Cage’s famous Sonatas and Interludes for prepared piano, part of BMCM+AC’s...

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Alma Stone Williams Collection

Alma Stone Williams Collection

Within the BMCM+AC Permanent Collection, we house a number of collections specific to alumni and faculty of the school, offering unique insight into what Black Mountain College was like from a wide range of perspectives. In this guest blog post from BMCM+AC Archival...

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Elaine and Willem de Kooning + The Summer of 1948

Elaine and Willem de Kooning + The Summer of 1948

When the summer of 1948 rolled around, Elaine and Willem de Kooning were relieved to take a break from the New York art scene which seemed to be taking from them much more than it was giving. On an invitation from Josef Albers, Willem came to Black Mountain College to...

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Unsung Women of the Bauhaus

Unsung Women of the Bauhaus

It's a story that is becoming more and more well known: female students, hoping to study art, design, and architecture, flocked to the Bauhaus when it opened its doors in 1933. Walter Gropius, when faced with this influx of female students, made the decision to limit...

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Materials, Sounds + Black Mountain College

Materials, Sounds + Black Mountain College

Civilization seems in general to estrange men from materials, from materials in their original form. The process of shaping these is so divided into separate steps that one person is rarely involved in the whole course of manufacture, often knowing only the finished...

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{Re}HAPPENING 9

{Re}HAPPENING 9

We were so lucky to have shared a beautiful day at Lake Eden with 650 members of our community, celebrating the legacy of Black Mountain College at this year's {Re}HAPPENING! Below we share our memories, including an album of some of our favorite photographs! Since...

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March 2018, Part 2: {Re}HAPPENING 8

March 2018, Part 2: {Re}HAPPENING 8

What a month! March, 2018 was one of our busiest yet and also one of our most exciting. We were able to host The Principles of Uncertainty, an evening length performance from John Heginbotham and Maira Kalman, as well as our 8th annual {Re}HAPPENING, featuring the...

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March 2018, Part 1: The Principles of Uncertainty

March 2018, Part 1: The Principles of Uncertainty

What a month! March, 2018 was one of our busiest yet and also one of our most exciting. We were able to host The Principles of Uncertainty, an evening length performance from John Heginbotham and Maira Kalman, as well as our 8th annual {Re}HAPPENING, featuring the...

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2017: A Year of Chance and Change

2017: A Year of Chance and Change

Dear Friends, As we look forward to 2018, we want to take a moment to thank you for your support this year. 2017 was a pivotal year for BMCM+AC, and whether it was through your presence at one or more of our events or your advocacy for our exciting new ventures, your...

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Charlot Fresco Conservation + the Summer of 1944

Charlot Fresco Conservation + the Summer of 1944

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) has begun an exciting new project that will reinvigorate one of Black Mountain College’s most iconic artworks: the Jean Charlot fresco murals painted on the pylons underneath the Studies Building during the Summer...

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Looking Back at ReVIEWING 9

Looking Back at ReVIEWING 9

This year’s ReVIEWING, our 9th annual International Conference on Black Mountain College, marked a pivotal point in BMCM+AC’s history. With two keynote presentations, the contributions of over 60 scholars, curators, and artists from around the world, the Southeast...

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Black Mountain College Radio Episode #3: Make Noise + Hursh

Black Mountain College Radio Episode #3: Make Noise + Hursh

Episode 3 of Black Mountain College Radio, our podcast dedicated to all things Black Mountain College and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, centers on Make Noise and BMC alum Frank Hursh! In this podcast, hear: An interview with the creators of Make Noise,...

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ReVIEWING BMC 9  | September 29-October 1, 2017

ReVIEWING BMC 9 | September 29-October 1, 2017

Our ninth annual ReVIEWING Black Mountain College international conference, in partnership with UNC Asheville, gathers artists and scholars who explore the history and legacy of Black Mountain College. This Year’s Conference Introduces two new programs: The BMCM+AC...

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Coming 2018: Perspectives on Jacob Lawrence

Coming 2018: Perspectives on Jacob Lawrence

We’re excited to share that we’ve been awarded a $25,000 Art Works grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and $60,000 from the Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Foundation for the Arts to mount Between Form and Content: Perspectives on Jacob Lawrence and Black Mountain College.

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Black Mountain College Radio Episode #1: Thomson + Harrison

Black Mountain College Radio Episode #1:
Thomson + Harrison

Lend us your ears for the debut episode of Black Mountain College Radio, our new podcast dedicated to all things Black Mountain College and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center! In this podcast, hear: An interview with Julie J. Thomson, curator of our recently...

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Dehn Conference

Dehn Conference

This past December, I was honored to be part of a four person team that organized a week long conference dedicated to the history and legacy of Max Dehn. Max Dehn was a faculty member at BMC, from 1945-1952. This conference included 16 mathematicians and historians of science and the arts. The participants plan to produce a book about the life and legacy of Max Dehn. The book is intended for a broad audience of readers with interests in the history of mathematics and the arts.

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Zola Marcus: Making Connections and Continuing the Conversation

Zola Marcus: Making Connections and Continuing the Conversation

“It is not sufficient in an art of pure composition to appeal to sensation: the work of art must evoke a response at a deeper level, the level we now call unconscious; and ‘the vibrations of the spirit’ that then take place are either personal, in that they effect some kind of mental integration, or perhaps supra-personal in that they assume the archetypal patterns into which mankind projects an explanation of its destiny.” Herbert Read, A Concise History of Modern Painting (p. 249)

My favorite old-school art historian Herbert Read could have written this about any one of the canvases on display in the exhibition Zola Marcus – Kinetic Origins, however, this passage is from his discussion of the German Expressionist movement and the writings of Vasily Kandinsky. It is one of many indicators of the connections that can be made between the works of Zola Marcus and a vast number of 20th century art theories and movements. It hints at how beautiful, stunning, and rich the material is that we get to explore when we delve into Marcus’s oeuvre. And it alludes to the quest on which we all embark – artists and viewers alike – about finding our destiny in our experience of the world.

Though with this introduction, I’m getting ahead of myself. To begin this journey, we have to take two steps back. The first step back is the one that establishes a connection between the artist and myself. When I originally received the invitation to moderate a panel on Zola Marcus, I was sure there had been a mix-up and they had contacted the wrong person. I had never heard of the artist (and only later found out that I’m not alone in this) and although my art historic training had been rooted in an environment strongly impacted by all things Abstract Expressionism, the movement itself had not become the focus of my scholarship.

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Thanks for Another Great Year!

Thanks for Another Great Year!

As we look forward to 2017, we want to take a moment to thank you for your support this year. Your contribution made it possible for us to present: the work of 302 artists and scholars, in 5 exhibitions, and 158 presentations, performances and workshops, that were seen by 20,000+ people who paid on average, $8 for per event and saw our exhibitions and gallery talks for free.

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{Re}Happening 2017 Call for Artists

{Re}Happening 2017 Call for Artists

CALL FOR ARTISTS Letter of Intent is due on December 21, 2016 Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center announces an opportunity for artists to participate in the 2017 {Re}HAPPENING on Saturday March 25 between 3pm-10pm at Camp Rockmont in Black Mountain, NC. We...

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FBI Investigations at BMC

FBI Investigations at BMC

FBI Investigations of Black Mountain College

At the height of mid-20th Century communist paranoia, the Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted a secret investigation into Black Mountain College. Students and faculty of the college have told stories of how troubling and ridiculous it was to see trenchcoat-wearing FBI agents sneaking around campus, but finally last year, the bureau declassified the investigation file at the request of the Carolina Public Press via the Freedom of Information Act. Now available for public viewing, the file elucidates the motives and methods behind the investigation.

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Ronald R. Janssen Library + Study Center Opens at BMCM+AC

Ronald R. Janssen Library + Study Center Opens at BMCM+AC

We are thrilled to announce the opening of the Ronald R. Janssen Library + Study Center in the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) gallery at 69 Broadway St. in downtown Asheville, NC. Ron Janssen is Professor Emeritus at Hofstra University in New York, where he taught English for more than thirty years and served as the founding chair of the Department of Writing Studies. Read more…

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Remembering Ruth Asawa

Remembering Ruth Asawa

Modernist sculptor Ruth Asawa, famed for her hanging wire sculptures, came to Black Mountain College from Milwaukee State Teachers College, after having spent the early years of WWII in internment camps for Japanese Americans. After studying with Josef Albers from...

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The BMC Summer Sessions

The BMC Summer Sessions

In 1944, Black Mountain College began the first of its famed summer music and arts institutes. Of the sessions, Martin Duberman in Black Mountain, An Exploration in Community writes, "From that first summer, Jean Charlot had left behind two frescoes on the reinforced...

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