SEP 13 2014 – JAN 19 2015



The Journey

The ultimate road trip, to a thousand destinations, for one unforgettable exhibition. In 2013, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art’s curatorial team hit the road to investigate what’s happening in American art today. Over the course of a year, the team logged more than 100,000 miles, crisscrossing the United States to visit nearly 1,000 artists.

Traveling to communities large and small, the Museum sought to discover artists whose work has not yet been fully recognized on a national level. On their travels, museum curators conducted hundreds of hours of one-on-one conversations with artists in their studios.

The Exhibition

The result of this unprecedented journey is a one-of-a-kind exhibition that draws from every region of the US, offering an unusually diverse look at American art. State of the Art brings together the artwork of more than 100 artists, ranging from works on canvas and paper to photography and video to installation and performance art, and more. The exhibition examines the ways in which today’s artists are informed by the past, innovating with materials old and new, and engaging deeply with issues relevant to our times.

Complimentary admission; no tickets or reservations required.


Ghost of a Dream – Hopes and Dreams in Forever: Almost

Ghost of a Dream – Hopes and Dreams in Forever: Almost How two artists start to collaborate to create a body of work.


Ghost of a Dream – The Beginning of a Beautiful Partnership

Ghost of a Dream – The Beginning of a Beautiful Partnership How two artists start to collaborate to create a body of work.


Gina Phillips

Gina Phillips b. 1971       STUDIO IN NEW ORLEANS, LA Much of Phillips’s work is autobiographical in nature. Fort Dirt Hole reflects on her childhood in rural Kentucky, where she spent summers playing outdoors and creating new things from her grandfather’s junkyard. Her grandmother was a folk artist and musician, both of which also rubbed off


Gina Phillips – the Artist’s Process

Gina Phillips – the Artist’s Process Gina Phillips talks about her unusual technique of using a long-arm quilting machine to create artworks.


Guy W. Bell

Guy W. Bell b. 1980       STUDIO IN LITTLE ROCK, AR Guy W. Bell’s painting Cain and Abel centers on the conflict between two dogs: one black, one white, caught in the midst of a violent encounter on a dirt road. The white dog leaps at the black one, its muscles gleaming in the twilight glow.


Hamilton Poe

Hamilton Poe b. 1986      STUDIO IN DETROIT, MI Inside Hamilton Poe’s warehouse studio in an industrial corridor on Detroit’s west side, periodic beeps—reminiscent of some far-off tracking device—reverberate throughout the building. As the artist welcomed me to his space, I saw the device issuing the sounds, which wasn’t tracking after all. It was dripping. A mound


Hiromi Mizugai Moneyhun

Hiromi Mizugai Moneyhun b. 1977       STUDIO IN JACKSONVILLE BEACH, FL The art of cutting paper into intricate shapes, patterns, and pictorial designs carries a long history across many cultures, from China to Mexico, India to Sweden, and beyond. Responding specifically to the tradition of Kiri-e, or Japanese paper cutting, Hiromi Mizugai Moneyhun uses an exacting


Isabella Kirkland

Isabella Kirkland b. 1954      STUDIO IN SAUSALITO, CA An amateur scientist (and research associate at the California Academy of Sciences), Isabella Kirkland delights in constructing complex images of multiple species. She has documented endangered and extinct animals, recently discovered species, and those that occupy very specific habitats. Her work invites us in to contemplate, to pay


Isabella Kirkland – A Rarefied World

Isabella Kirkland – A Rarefied World Isabella Kirkland describes concepts and experiences that contributed to the creation of Emergent.


James Lavadour

James Lavadour b. 1951      STUDIO IN PENDLETON, OR Living and working on the Umatilla reservation in eastern Oregon, James Lavadour responds in paint to his experience of the land and the teachings and legends of his Walla Walla heritage. Painting in the early hours between 3 and 4 a.m. allows Lavadour to work without interruption, without


Jamie Adams

Jamie Adams b. 1961       STUDIO IN ST. LOUIS, MO The large-scale paintings in Jamie Adams’s Niagara series emphasize the female figure within the charged environment of Niagara Falls. The artist calls upon both cinematic and art historical precedents to inform his imagery. In niagaradown, seven figures appear crowded together in the foreground as if marooned


Jason Vaughn

Jason Vaughn b. 1979      STUDIO IN MADISON, WI When photographer Jason Vaughn first traveled across his newly-adopted state of Wisconsin, one part of the landscape stood out because of its ubiquity and variety: the humble deer stand. These quirky, homemade structures—where hunters can remain out of sight and protected from the elements— attracted the artist’s eye,


Jason Vaughn – A Lesson in Hunting

Jason Vaughn – A Lesson in Hunting Jason Vaughn describes his early biases about hunting and the change in attitude he experienced during the course of making the Hide series.


Jawshing Arthur Liou

Jawshing Arthur Liou b. 1968      STUDIO IN BLOOMINGTON, IN Jawshing Arthur Liou trained as a journalist before emigrating from his native Taiwan to the United States. Studying photography with the renowned Jerry Uelsmann, Liou’s work became more personal and organic, and his practice came to incorporate video. These works often stitch together multiple shots or image


Jeff Whetstone

Jeff Whetstone b. 1968       STUDIO IN DURHAM, NC To start their creative engines, some artists go to their studios. Jeff Whetstone goes into the woods. There, among the dense forest of central North Carolina, the artist uses photography and video to explore the connections between man, nature, and masculinity. You see these themes emerge in


Jeila Gueramian

Jeila Gueramian b. 1971      STUDIO IN BROOKLYN, NY For Jeila Gueramian, inspiration and source material is never farther away than the nearest thrift store. Gueramian grew up taking things apart and putting them back together in new ways. As an adult, she has made a career out of taking something common and homely and turning it


Jeila Gueramian – Building Worlds of Wonder

Jeila Gueramian – Building Worlds of Wonder Jeila Gueramian shares how her background in design and making things for her children inform her artwork.


Jeila Gueramian– Inspiration for It’s You

Jeila Gueramian – Inspiration for It’s You Gueramian explains her process and how she developed this work specifically for Crystal Bridges.


Video Interviews with the Artists

Bios • Work • Process


Let’s Talk About It: the State of the Art Symposium


I was pretty floored when I heard from our curators that they were going rogue in developing their next exhibition by traveling cross-country to get to know artists in their studios.   Why would such an idea be so shocking to me? I think in part we’ve become conditioned that establishments such as museums often


Working (and Playing) with Alberto Aguilar


As a Museum Educator of Studio Programs at Crystal Bridges, I have the privilege of planning classes for Museum guests that allow them to create work alongside living contemporary artists from State of the Art, such as the upcoming multi-generational workshop with Alberto Aguilar. Many of you may already participated in Alberto Aguilar’s world by


Superstorm Sandy and the Art of Nathalie Miebach


It was two years ago today that Hurricane Sandy hit the east coast of the US, causing massive destruction along the eastern seaboard and especially in New York and New Jersey. Instruments recording ocean and atmospheric data during Sandy registered a number of extremes:  the storm surge at Battery Park in New York topped 13.88 feet: