Abstract Expressionism Revisited: Selections from the Guild Hall Museum Permanent Collection

October 26, 2019 - December 30, 2019

Abstract Expressionism Revisited: Selections from the Permanent Collection
October 26- December 30, 2019
Guest Curator: Joan Marter, PhD
Moran and Woodhouse Galleries


This exhibition of paintings, works on paper, and sculpture will celebrate the outstanding collection of Abstract Expressionist art owned by Guild Hall. Abstract Expressionism was an avant-garde movement of the 1950s that resulted, in part, from the dynamic interplay of artists working on the East End. Among the participants in this “artist colony” of the Hamptons were permanent residents and summer visitors.Painters included Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner, Willem and Elaine de Kooning, James Brooks and Charlotte Park, Robert Motherwell, and Grace Hartigan among others.Presentation of many works that have not been exhibited in recent years, also brings attention to the digitization of the Guild Hall collection that was completed recently. The Museum has been building a significant collection of Abstract Expressionist works, and prime examples will be combined with loans by artists who created their work on the East End.

The exhibition will include a catalogue with color illustrations of examples in the Guild Hall collection, and an essay that explains the importance of East End artists to the emergence of Abstract Expressionism .

Joan Marter is an American academic, art critic and author with a Ph.D. from The University of Delaware, 1974. Marter is the “Distinguished Professor of Art History” at Rutgers University, the co-editor of the Woman’s Art Journal, the editor of The Grove Encyclopedia of American Art, the author and co-organizer of Women of Abstract Expressionism in 2016 (Denver Art Museum).

The exhibition catalog can be purchased at the Guild Hall Museum Shop. Contact kmulcahy@guildhall.org for more information.

Guild Hall: An Adventure in the Arts, Landau Traveling Exhibitions

February 9, 2007 - October 1, 2019

Guild Hall: An Adventure in the Arts
Landau Traveling Exhibition, 2007 – Present
Curated by Museum Director/Chief Curator, Christina Mossaides Strassfield


Gulf Coast Museum of Art, Largo, FL, February 9 – April 30, 2007
LSU Art Museum, Baton Rouge, LA, March 1 –  May 31, 2008
Visual Arts Center, Panama City, FL, June 15 – October 1, 2008
South Bend Regional Museum of Art, South Bend, IN, October 18 – January 15, 2009
Turtle Bay Exploration Center, Redding, CA, February 5 – May 3, 2009
Sangre de Cristo Art Center, Pueblo, CO, May 21 – August 2, 2009
Southeast Missouri Regional Museum, Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, MO, August 15 – October 31, 2009
Lakeview Museum of Arts & Sciences, Peoria, IL, Nov 15, 2009 – January 15, 2010
Mobile Museum of Art, Mobile, AL, February 5 – April 18, 2010
Museum of the Rockies, MSU, Bozeman, MT, February 17 – May 20, 2012
Norton Museum, Shreveport, LA, February 5 – March 31, 2013
Alexandria Museum of Art, Alexandria, LA, April 12 – June 15, 2013
Farmington Museum, Farmington, NM, July 15 – September 22, 2013
Pensecola Museum of Art, Pensecola, FL, August 15 – October 15, 2014
Lake Charles City Hall, Lake Charles, LA, August 28 – October 24, 2015
Arlington Art Museum, Arlington, TX, November 20, 2015 – February 21, 2016
Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Christi, TX, January 27 – April 16, 2017
Trout Museum of Art, Appleton, WI, December 26, 2018 – March 24, 2019
Loveland Museum, Loveland, CO, June 14 – September 22, 2019
Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Winchester, VA, August 29, 2020  – January 3, 2021


Please Send to: Ray Johnson

October 20, 2018 - December 16, 2018

Please Send to: Ray Johnson
October 20 – December 16, 2018
Curated by Jess Frost, Associate Curator/Registrar of the Permanent Collection
Woodhouse Gallery

Drawn from Guild Hall’s permanent collection, Please Send To: Ray Johnson features over 30 works by the famously reclusive artist, the majority of which are classified as Mail Art, a movement pioneered by Johnson in the 1950s. The artist sent small, mixed-media works to a network of fellow artists through the post, instructing them to intervene in the original work or forward the materials to another person. Mail Art offered Johnson alternative modes of circulating ideas and gaining recognition, and one could argue that these subversive methods anticipated the digital dissemination of images through platforms like Instagram and Facebook.

The cryptic arrangements of notes, doodles, newspaper clippings and rubber stamped texts in these works offer great insights into the shifting social dynamics of this fertile period in American art. As viewers try to decode the visual information presented, they are drawn into Johnson’s complex observations about his immediate art orbit and society at large. Despite regular exhibitions with Feigen Gallery and a 1970 show of his Mail Art at the Whitney Museum of American Art, the artist remained wary of the public eye. When he retreated to a suburb on Long Island, limiting his communications to the telephone and post, his work became increasingly populated by narratives surrounding the celebrities and members of the art scene he had vacated.

In January of 1995, Johnson ended his life by jumping off the Sag Harbor – North Haven Bridge, a mysterious gesture that was true to his life’s work. This final performance was orchestrated to include a legacy in the form of thousands of works, carefully arranged in his otherwise empty home in Locust Valley. In Johnson’s absence, his works became more readily available for public consumption, and historians began to recognize these works as early examples of Pop art and Conceptual art.

This extensive and important cache of material entered Guild Hall’s Permanent Collection through the Tito Spiga Bequest, for whom one of the museum’s galleries is named. As with all of the museum’s holdings, the works reveal the rich culture and relationships to the region, and the museum’s commitment to preserving that history.

The Artist Curated Collection: Toward Abstraction

February 24, 2018 - March 25, 2018

The Artist Curated Collection: Toward Abstraction
February 24 – March 25, 2018
Curated by Bryan Hunt
Moran Gallery


Organized by Bryan Hunt, Toward Abstraction, features paintings and works on paper that demonstrate the path an artist takes from representation to abstraction. Spanning genres and generations, Hunt’s choices offer the viewer an opportunity to examine the process of abstraction. While some artists approach this undertaking reductively, distilling the subject to its essence, others choose a more expressionistic path, or even a conceptual one. Some straddle multiple methodologies, defying categorization altogether. Using figure and landscape as bookends, the selection follows the formal trajectory from these foundations “toward abstraction.” On Sunday, March 18 at 2pm, Jess Frost, Associate Curator/Registrar of Permanent Collection, will discuss the inspiration behind this new series, and give insights into the selection process.

Recollection: Selections from the Permanent Collection

October 21, 2017 - December 31, 2017

Recollection: Selections from the Permanent Collection
October 21 – December 31, 2017
Curated by Jess Frost, Associate Curator/Registrar of the Permanent Collection
Woodhouse Gallery


Recollection will feature masterworks from Guild Hall’s Permanent Collection, alongside some of the Museum’s rare and unusual holdings. This exhibition is the first of an annual series that will be drawn from Collection and archives, and coincides with a major digitization project that will enable greater educational access to Guild Hall’s notable holdings.

Eighty-six years after Mrs. Lorenzo E. Woodhouse dedicated Guild Hall as a cultural center for the community in 1931, the Guild Hall Museum has amassed over 2400 works by artists associated with the institution and the region. The Permanent Collection includes paintings, sculpture, prints, watercolors, photographs and drawings dating from the 19th Century to today, by internationally distinguished artists such as Thomas Moran, Childe Hassam, Jackson Pollock, Lee Krasner, Willem de Kooning, Cindy Sherman, Mary Heilmann and Frank Stella, and representative of major art movements from American Impressionism to Contemporary art.

Highlights of the exhibition will include a number of significant works recently returned from the traveling exhibition Guild Hall: An Adventure in the Arts, such as Fairfield Porter’s The Plane Tree, 1964, and Elaine de Kooning’s painting Bacchus #63, 1982. Also on display are Frank Stella’s Lanckorona III, 1971, and artist Al Loving’s torn canvas painting Untitled, c. 1975. Additional artists included are; Ross Bleckner, John Chamberlain,Chuck Close, Willem de Kooning, Adolph Gottlieb, Hiroyuki Hamada, Bryan Hunt,Lee Krasner, Ibram Lassaw, Roy Lichtenstein, Costantino Nivola, Alan Shields, Pat Steir and Jane Wilson.


October 24, 2009 - January 17, 2010

October 24, 2009 – January 17, 2010
Ac-qui-si-tions is an exhibition that will feature a selection of recent acquisitions from the Guild Hall museum permanent collection.  Guild Hall’s mission is to collect and exhibit artists who have a connection to the eastern End of Long Island. This exhibition will highlight the work of over 35 artists in a variety of mediums including, paintings, prints, collage and photographs. Artist’s included in this exhibition are; Linda Alpern, Jennifer Cross, Peter Dayton, Jim Dine, Tom Ferrara, Cornelia Foss, Dorothy Frankel, David Gamble, Michael Goldberg, Eunice Golden, Robert Goodnough, Ingebord ten Haeff, Claus Hoie, Helen Hoie, Howard Kanovitz, Stanley Kearl, Mel Kendrick, William King, Cynthia Knott, Harry Kramer, Laurie Lambrecht,  Ibram Lassaw, Conrad Marca-Relli, Rima Mardoyan, Paton Miller, Robert Motherwell, Hans Namuth, Costantino Nivola, Elizabeth Peyton, Fairfield Porter, Miriam Schapiro, Joan Semmel, David Slivka, Raphael Soyer, and Darius Yektai. The works span a variety of media including, paintings, prints, collage and photographs.