October 10, 2007
Bank of America Charitable Foundation Grant Funds Educational Initiative.
Bingham Exhibition Opens October 12.
October 10, 2007—The Saint Louis Art Museum today announced that Bank of America has generously donated two engraving plates and thirteen printing proofs created by Missouri artist George Caleb Bingham. Both engraving plates and six of the printing proofs are featured in the exhibition George Caleb Bingham: The Making of "The County Election," which opens at the Museum October 12. The Saint Louis Art Museum is the only place in the country to present this comprehensive exhibition exploring the work of one of our nation's artistic masters.
The Bank of America Charitable Foundation also announced a $27,000 grant to fund an educational initiative that will teach Missouri students about Bingham's creative process. The grant will fund a full-color educational poster and interactive website designed to increase awareness of Bingham's important role in history.
"Bank of America is a leading supporter of arts and culture in the country, and we are pleased to partner with the Saint Louis Art Museum to bring to public view a significant and rare collection of works by one of Missouri's favorite sons," said Patricia Mercurio, Missouri President, Bank of America. "We share the Museum's strong commitment to education and are delighted to support programs that will enhance student's learning experiences across the state, helping them develop a greater appreciation for these celebrated works."
As part of the exhibition, the two engraving plates, The County Election and Stump Speaking, combined with six proofs of The County Election, demonstrate how George Caleb Bingham's work was first made and then widely distributed throughout the nation through prints. The circulation of his work in print form maximized awareness of the Missouri artist's talents and made the composition affordable and available to a larger portion of the population.
"This splendid exhibition of George Caleb Bingham's work would not have been possible without Bank of America's generous gift," said Saint Louis Art Museum Director Brent R. Benjamin. "The Museum appreciates Bank of America's continuing support of our exhibitions and educational initiatives."
The gift follows another significant donation made by Bank of America to the Museum. In 2001, the company donated Bingham's celebrated three-painting cycle known as the Election Series. The Series is among the artist's greatest achievements.
In addition to the engraving plates and printing proofs, the exhibition features nearly two dozen of Bingham's preparatory drawings, infrared images of The County Election painting's underdrawings and The County Election painting.
Curated by Andrew Walker, assistant director for curatorial affairs and curator of American art, with the assistance of Janeen Turk, curatorial assistant, George Caleb Bingham: The Making of "The County Election" will be on view in Cohen Gallery (313) through March 9, 2008.
The Saint Louis Art Museum is one of the nation's leading comprehensive art museums with collections that include works of art of exceptional quality from virtually every culture and time period. Areas of notable depth include Oceanic art, pre-Columbian art, ancient Chinese bronzes and European and American art of the late 19th and 20th centuries, with particular strengths in 20th-century German art. The Museum offers a full range of exhibitions and educational programming generated independently and in collaboration with local, national, and international partners.
Admission to the Saint Louis Art Museum is free to all every day; exhibition admission is free on Fridays.
For more information, please contact the Saint Louis Art Museum (www.slam.org), which is located at One Fine Arts Drive, Forest Park, St. Louis, MO 63110-1380, or call (314) 721-0072