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.


Vanessa German – An Adventure in Sight

Vanessa German – An Adventure in Sight Vanessa German talks about the accumulation of objects used in her sculptures and what they represent to her.


Vanessa German – Tapping into Ancestral Roots

Vanessa German – Tapping into Ancestral Roots German talks about learning to trust her artistic instinct in creating her work.


Vanessa L. German

Vanessa L.German b. 1976      STUDIO IN PITTSBURGH, PA Vanessa L. German greets you at the front door of her house in Homewood (Pittsburgh) with a warm embrace, a song, and a poem of her own creation. It’s immediately evident that German is a force of nature, and her presence is one of caring and protection in


Vincent Valdez

Vincent Valdez b. 1977       STUDIO IN SAN ANTONIO, TX In each of Vincent Valdez’s paintings from The Strangest Fruit series, a single male figure floats on a blank background. Each perfectly rendered subject is suffused in a warm light, hovering in space without reference to the ground. The title refers to the 1937 poem “Strange


Watie White

Watie White b. 1971      STUDIO IN OMAHA, NE Two floors of Watie White’s studio are filled with the fruits of his “obsessive” working— drawings, paintings, and prints fill every wall. Connecting the various projects is an abiding interest in people and communities and the landscapes that surround them. In a series of large woodcuts, White carefully


Wilmer Wilson IV

Wilmer Wilson IV b. 1989      STUDIO IN PHILADELPHIA, PA Finding creative possibility in the manipulation of his own body, Wilmer Wilson IV creates work that questions our understanding of identity and blackness in the United States. In his performance work Henry “Box” Brown: FOREVER, Wilson covered his body in thousands of postage stamps, walked through the


Works Progress

Colin Kloecker & Shanai Matteson b. 1983 | 1982      STUDIO IN MINNEAPOLIS, MN Colin Kloecker and Shanai Matteson are community artists in the sense that their medium is the community. Working together as the collective Works Progress, they produce a host of events, projects, and resources that help people in communities engage with one another, build


Zoe Charleton – Finding a Way In to Tough Subjects

Zoe Charleton – Finding a Way In to Tough Subjects Zoe Charleton explains how she uses humor to help grapple with serious issues in her work.


Zoë Charlton

Zoë Charlton b. 1973      STUDIO IN WASHINGTON, DC One column in Zoë Charlton’s lively studio is covered with book and magazine images of ancient Greek kouros figures and modern body-builders. On her desk are a collection of African masks. These images—from both high and low culture—inspire her, as does drawing the figure from life. Charlton identifies


Video Interviews with the Artists

Bios • Work • Process


Down the Rabbit Hole with Jeila Gueramian


The opening date for State of the Art is nearly upon us.  Today at the Museum we are gearing up for a media preview of the exhibition, then a preview for Members, and then the Big Day on Saturday, when everyone is invited to come in and see the work of these amazing artists.  


International Literacy Day in Art


It’s International Literacy Day!   Today we celebrate great works of art in Crystal Bridges’ collection that relate to books and reading, and we also offer a couple of sneak peeks at works in the upcoming exhibition State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now with a literary theme.   As early as colonial times, images


Art for the Birds: A Conversation with Calder Kamin


If you have come in or out through Crystal Bridges’ south lobby in the past couple of weeks, you have surely noticed the diverse images of birds that have congregated on the windows.  This is Impact Proof, a work of art by Kansas City, Missouri-based artist Calder Kamin, for the upcoming exhibition State of the