If you happen to be in Manhattan sometime over the next three months, I recommend stopping by the Freedman Art Gallery on the Upper East Side which is exhibiting a collection of paintings entitled “Colors” featuring work by over twenty-five artists including Josef Albers, Jack Bush, Sam Francis, Helen Frankenthaler, Hans Hofmann, Robert Motherwell, Kenneth Noland, Larry Poons, Kurt Schwitters, and Frank Stella, among others.
Full disclosure, my recommendation here has a lot to do with being a proud mom; the exhibition was inspired by a poem that Zoe, our youngest daughter, wrote in 2016 as an English class assignment.
Every year, her English teacher, Proal Heartwell at the Village School, an all girls middle school (the first in the country, actually) where all three of our daughters have gone, asks the students to enter the annual University of Virginia Fralin Art Museum’s Writer’s Eye competition. The Writer’s Eye challenges Charlottesville area students to create a literary work that is inspired by art on display at the museum. Zoe wrote a poem she entitled “Colors” inspired by a painting by one of the greatest American artists of all time, Larry Poons. Zoe’s poem won first prize that year for the middle school student poetry division, which is a pretty big deal here in Charlottesville and was more than plenty to make mom and dad proud. But then….
Last year, one of the foremost art dealers in the world, Ann Freedman, happened upon Zoe’s poem on a visit to the Fralin. Ann was so taken with it that she showed it to Larry Poons, who was similarly wowed. The poem inspired Ann to assemble, with Zoe’s and our permission, the exhibit she entitled “Colors”, after Zoe’s poem. The exhibit features at the entrance, a large blown up copy of Zoe’s poem.
We drove up from Charlottesville on Thursday evening for the exhibit opening where Zoe had a chance to meet Ann Freedman, along with Larry Poons and several other amazing, talented artists.
Afterwards, we got to have dinner with Ann who is one of the most interesting, extraordinary women I’ve ever met, and who I’m very proud to now know.