esherick to NAKASHIMA
Open through summer 2017
Part of a True Fine Art and Craft Community
Modernism Museum Mount Dora is pleased to showcase the artistic genius and influence of Wharton Esherick, “The Dean of American Craftsmen.” The museum’s current series of exhibits illustrate how the essence, or DNA, of Esherick’s work intertwines with the works of subsequent generations of artists in the Modernism and American Studio Arts Movements. Visitors to the museum will see the genesis and evolution of the Modernism Movement, as illustrated by the works of such renowned artists and craftsmen as George Nakashima and Wendell Castle.
The Studio Arts Movement continued and transformed with additional, noteworthy works of such esteemed artists as Sam Maloof, Arthur Espenet Carpenter, and Albert Paley, all of whom will also be featured. Each of these extraordinary craftsmen influenced the genre through an expression of their individual style and artistry.
The current installation begins with the origins of Modernism and the American Studio Arts Movement with the craftsmanship of Wharton Esherick, and progresses to subsequent designs by George Nakashima. These artisans are frequently cited as two of the most acclaimed and influential artists of this uniquely American art form.
Nakashima believed that each piece he designed was dictated by the “soul of the tree.” He strove to feature its “life and legacy” in his works. Nakashima borrowed from the traditions of Japanese architecture, combining them with the newer technologies of Western culture. Harmony between nature, form, substance, and space were hallmarks of the graceful elegance found in Nakashima’s designs. (See the George Nakashima Conoid Bench, pictured above.)
Be enthralled. We invite you to immerse yourself in the beauty and nature captured by the artists of the “esherick to Nakashima” installation at the Modernism Museum.
The exhibit above is a meticulous study of a room from Wharton Esherick’s own house. Esherick’s home represents the artist’s single-most successful achievement. No floor, no wall, no single angle, escaped his most intense artistic scrutiny. The room, pictured here, represents the most important space in Esherick's home — his bedroom. Included in this careful reinterpretation is a rare Wharton Esherick bed with drawers, an early hammer handle chair, a pair of Hessian Hills chairs, a coffee table with sculpted legs, an interesting (and possibly unique) book and magazine rack, a rectilinear box from the curvaceous kitchen and a circular lamp table.
“Modernism Museum Mount Dora is doing something that has never been done before,” says the previous Executive Director and Curator of The Wharton Esherick Museum, Paul Eisenhauer. “It provides an opportunity for people to interpret the world around them and the objects in it in an entirely different way.”