New Formations: Czech Avant-Garde Art and Modern Glass from the Roy and Mary Cullen Collection November 6, 2011–March 11, 2012

Part of Life, Luxury & the Avant-Garde, a journey across continents and through centuries of art in four stunning shows this season.

New Formations: Czech Avant-Garde Art and Modern Glass from the Roy and Mary Cullen Collection presents works of art hidden from the public during the Cold War. Shedding light on a little-known chapter of 20th-century art, the exhibition features more than 150 Czech avant-garde works collected by Houston philanthropists Roy and Mary Cullen.

Among the objects on view are outstanding examples from the flowering of Czech Surrealism; rare artists’ books and avant-garde periodicals; and exquisitely molded and blown modern glass. Highlights include artworks by Surrealist pioneer and radical feminist Toyen; drawings by Josef Šíma; collages and photomontages by Karel Teige; and paintings, drawings, and photographs by Jindrich Štyrský. The title New Formations is taken from the Artificielismus (Artificialism) manifesto, published in the late 1920s by Štyrský and Toyen. It aptly reflects the Cullens’ spirit of adventure and their commitment to charting this lost chapter of the avant-garde.

Accompanying the exhibition is a major catalogue, produced by the MFAH with Yale University Press, documenting the remarkable depth and breadth of the Cullen Collection.

This exhibition is organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

Generous funding is provided by:
The Trust for Mutual Understanding
Leslie and Brad Bucher


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