Snite Museum, Notre Dame
P.O. Box 368
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN 46556
For immediate release:
Selections from the William McGraw Photography Collection
August 15-November 14, 2010
Snite Museum of Art
University of Notre Dame
The Snite Museum of Art is pleased to exhibit Selections from the William McGraw Photography Collection. This exhibition consists of forty-nine contemporary photographs given by Dr. William McGraw '65 of Indianapolis.
The donation includes examples by some of the most important artists of the recent period: Sally Mann, Shelby Lee Adams, Robert and Shana ParkeHarrison, Richard Misrach, Terry Evans, Abelardo Morrell, and Michael Kenna. Many of the artists are new to the collection, such as Martina Lopez, Keith Carter, James Fee, and Rocky Schenck. Their styles range from straight documentation to surrealism.
In addition to being an accomplished diagnostic radiologist in Indianapolis and a 1965 graduate of the University of Notre Dame, Dr. Bill McGraw is also a collector of contemporary photographs. He began collecting around 1993 with the acquisition of three prints by Michael Kenna, and he just kept going. The result of that passion is in evidence here on these walls.
McGraw remembers that the first thing that attracted him to photography was the strong sense of composition that many of the images displayed, as well as the effect of light, and of course the subject matter. He was fortunate that when he began collecting, the prices for such photographs were reasonable, especially when compared to other artistic media. He began subscribing to art photography magazines and visiting museums and galleries whenever he traveled. The Catherine Edelman Gallery in Chicago became his chief source of prints, and Catherine herself was very helpful, offering sound advice along with the photographs.
His first love was black and white, then he began adding color work. The subject matter is broad. Documentary photographer Sebastião Salgado shows us a massive labor project in Brazil; Matt Heron chronicled the civil rights march to Selma, Alabama; Ernst Haas captured the return of a one-legged soldier from World War II; Alfred Eisenstaedt reveals the splendor of the Milan Opera House in the 1930s; while Terry Evans records a delicate plant specimen pressed inside a nineteenth-century scrapbook from the Field Museum in Chicago.
A number of photographs are surreal or fantastic, such as James Fee's heavily manipulated commentaries on contemporary society, Martina Lopez's creation of an imaginary landscaped populated by images taken from old photographs, or Rocky Schenk's dream-like study of a fountain at night.
A photography dealer once told McGraw that collectors usually start with landscapes, and end up acquiring portraits. He has explored both genres, with fine portraits in the exhibit by Shelby Lee Adams, Sally Mann, and Jock Sturges. Landscapes include Richard Misrach's beautiful color images of California, Memmo Jodice's classical ruins in Turkey and, of course, the dream-like places in the delicate photographs of Michael Kenna, one of McGraw's favorite photographers.
The Snite Museum of Art is extremely grateful to Bill and Ann Marie McGraw for their generous donation of this collection to Notre Dame. It is a a welcome addition to the Museum's current extensive holdings, and these photographs will entertain, challenge, and educate viewers for many years to come.
On Sunday, August 29 the Snite Museum invites the public to the opening reception from 2-4 p.m.
The Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame
The Snite Museum of Art is located on the campus of the University of Notre Dame, near South Bend, Indiana. Museum hours are 10 am to 4 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday; 10 am to 5 pm Thursday through Saturday; and Sundays 1 pm to 5 pm. Admission is free. Museum information is available at 574.631.5466 or at the Museum's website: www.nd.edu/~sniteart/. Driving directions and parking information are available at http://ndsp.nd.edu/parking.html/. Find us also at ArtsEverywhere.com and facebook.com.
The Snite Museum of Art provides opportunities to enjoy, respond to, learn from, and be inspired by original works of art. As an integral unit of the University of Notre Dame, the Museum supports teaching and research; furthers faith-based initiatives for greater internal diversity and service to the external community; and reflects the traditions and values of the University