Pictures Worth Thousands
By Jared Bowen
BOSTON — Photographer Ansel Adams once said, "You don’t take a photograph, you make it." Some images also end up making history, such as those by Arthur Griffin that depict decades of baseball at Fenway, or the enormous donation of Adams, Sheeler and Weston photography just received by the Museum of Fine Art from its trustee Saundra Lane. Hear more about those and some shows currently on the stage.
Griffin Museum of Photography
Fenway Park: A 100th Anniversary Celebration
On view through June 3
The Griffin Museum presents a photographic celebration of the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park, as well as the 20th anniversary of the museum, where Boston baseball has been very much a part of its history. The Griffin Museum is the embodiment of founder Arthur Griffin’s passion: to promote an appreciation of photographic art and a broader understanding of its visual, emotional and social impact. Arthur’s goal was to share with visitors his enthusiasm for a medium that is diverse, imaginative and informative.
The Lonesome West
Presented by Tir Na at Davis Square Theater
Through June 3
In a small Irish town that's fast becoming the murder capital of the world, two brothers battle it out over a dead father, an inheritance and a packet of crisps. The Lonesome West is the third instalment in Martin McDonagh's award-winning Leenane trilogy. It tells the story of Coleman and Valene Connor, whose dysfunctional cohabitation plays out a hilariously dark vision of the human condition.
Presented by SpeakEasy Stage Company
At the Calderwood Pavilion
Through June 9
Based on the cult film of the same name, which starred Olivia Newton-John and Gene Kelly, this riotous musical follows the efforts of a magical Greek muse who drops in on Venice Beach, California in 1980, disguised as an Australian, to help a struggling artist achieve his dream of opening a roller disco. Xanadu features a book by the ingenious Douglas Carter Beane and a score with those chart-topping tunes “Magic,” “Suddenly” and “Evil Woman” by Jeff Lynne, of ELO fame, and John Farrar.
MFA trustee Saundra Lane has given the Museum of Fine Arts a gift "that will transform the museum's holdings," says director Malcolm Rogers. It's billed as one of the largest and most significant gifts in its history. The 6,000 photographs alone increase the museum's photography collection from 9,000 to 15,000 items, including works by Ansel Adams, Charles Sheeler and Edward Weston.
In addition to the 6,000 photographs, Lane's gift includes 25 paintings, among them works by Stuart Davis and Franz Kline, as well as works on paper by Georgia O'Keefe and Arthur G. Dove. Currently on view from the Lane collection are 40 of Weston's photographs in an exhibit called Edward Weston: Leaves of Grass, as well as Lunenburg, 1954, by Charles Sheeler, on view in the gallery of American modernism.
Meanwhile, fashion icon Iris Apfel has pledged to donate more than 600 fashion pieces to the Peabody Essex Museum. All the the items were featured in the Rare Bird of Fashion exhibition, first at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2005 and then at PEM in 2009. Iris Apfel has been donating 80 to 90 additional pieces a year to PEM since her show closed; with the announcement of this newest gift, Apfel will have given almost 900 pieces to PEM.
Apfel, at age 90, shows no sign of slowing down. She has recently been the face/inspiration for a major M.A.C. cosmetics line, has launched a signature Iris Apfel jewelry and eyewear lines, and is a visiting professor for the University of Texas at Austin.
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Jared Bowen is WGBH’s Emmy Award-winning Executive Editor and Host for Arts.
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