The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati
Authors Posts by Joanna Kerman

Joanna Kerman

This not-so-average Jo is a born-and-raised Cincinnatian on a quest for creativity. Joanna embraces her artistic side as the Marketing & Communications Coordinator at the Cincinnati Art Museum, where she has the pleasure of managing CAM’s Instagram page, leading the YP Culture + Cocktails program, and spearheading the museum’s community marketing initiative, among other tasks. Prior to joining the CAM family, Joanna graduated from Xavier University with a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising (Go Muskies!) and held positions at SORTA/Metro and Trivantis Corporation. Joanna is a yogi, cook, animal lover, and home beer brewer. She resides in Fairview with her husband and cat.

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Our insider at the the Cincinnati Art Museum gives us inside into a forthcoming exhibition and the impact of the kimono on global fashion.

Kimono: Refashioning Contemporary Style is showing at the Cincinnati Art Museum from June 28–September 15, 2019.

In Kimono: Refashioning Contemporary Style, on view at the Cincinnati Art Museum from June 28–September 15, 2019, visitors can experience more than 50 ensembles by Japanese, European and American designers including Coco Chanel, Christian Louboutin, John Galliano, Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Rei Kawakubo, Iris van Herpen and Issey Miyake.

Organized by the Kyoto Costume Institute in Japan and the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, the exhibition features fashion from the 1870s to the present day along with kimono, Japanese prints, paintings and textiles.

Kimono—literally translated “thing to wear”—has impacted international fashion since Japan opened its ports to the world in the mid-1850s. The form and silhouette of kimono, its two-dimensional structure and motifs used as surface embellishment, have all been refashioned into a wide array of garments. Kimono revealed new possibilities in clothing design and helped lay the foundation for contemporary fashion design.

The exhibition explores these themes in four sections. The first explores the influence of Japanese aesthetics, called Japonsim, on artists, specifically painters, of the late nineteenth century, who depicted kimono in many of their works. The second section examines kimono’s influence on fashion from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century, when couture designs were inspired by the shape and cut of kimono and incorporated Japanesque motifs in their surface decoration. Two of the pieces included in this section address the use of kimono by Westerners as dressing gowns with a Cincinnati connection. The third section examines contemporary fashion and the continued use of variations on the kimono silhouette along with traditional weaving, dyeing and decorative techniques. The final section demonstrates how Japan continues to inspire the world of fashion through popular design, including manga and anime.

From a nineteenth century gown decorated with Japanese-inspired floral motifs to a 1960s dress tied with an obi-like sash to couture designs as recent as 2016, Kimono: Refashioning Contemporary Style, is a product of international collaboration between Japanese and American institutions. It makes clear that kimono has had a strong presence in fashion and continues to be an inspiration for designers worldwide.

“We are excited to partner with Kyoto Costume Institute (KCI) and Asian Art Museum to tell the story of the influence of kimono on contemporary fashions. KCI is renowned for their collection of Western dress and more than 15 exceptional examples of traditional and contemporary fashion have been added to the exhibition from our own permanent collection. We have also supplemented the show with paintings, works on paper and examples of Rookwood pottery that help tell this story. From the 1870s to today, the kimono has continued to be a touchstone for fashion couturiers on a global scale,” said Cynthia Amnéus, Cincinnati Art Museum’s Chief Curator and Curator of Fashion Arts and Textiles.

The Cincinnati Art Museum is the third of three venues in the United States to present this exhibition. It was previously on view under the title Kimono Refashioned at the Newark Museum in New Jersey and the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco.

Tickets for Kimono: Refashioning Contemporary Style are free for museum members. Tickets will soon be available for purchase by the general public at the Cincinnati Art Museum front desk and online at Photography is permitted, but no flash. #CAMfashion

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Read on for a sneak peek inside the forthcoming “No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man” that will take over the Cincinnati Art Museum starting April 26.


Image: Renwick Gallery Ron Blunt

“No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man” takes over Cincinnati Art Museum starting April 26

Burning Man. It’s been called “an experience in collective dreaming.” It’s a cultural movement and a thriving temporary city of more than 70,000 active participants from all over the globe who gather in the dust of the Black Rock Desert outside Reno, Nevada, for seven days.

And soon visitors will be able to experience the visual art and artists of Burning Man in Cincinnati, Ohio.

From giant mutant art vehicles and creative costuming to immersive gallery-sized installations, No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man will land at the Cincinnati Art Museum in two phases. The first phase opens on April 26, 2019, and the second, which will unveil additional art throughout the museum, opens on June 7, 2019. Both phases of the exhibition will close September 2, 2019.

The exhibition will take over much of the museum, exploring the maker culture, ethos, principles and creative spirit of Burning Man. The exhibition was organized by Nora Atkinson, the Lloyd Herman Curator of Craft at the Smithsonian American Art Museum; it debuted at the museum’s Renwick Gallery in spring 2018.

In addition to the over-sized sculptures, the exhibition will feature jewelry, video, and photography by artists and designers who participate in Burning Man. Ephemera, archival materials and photographs will be on view in the companion exhibition City of Dust: The Evolution of Burning Man, organized by the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno; it will trace Burning Man’s origins from its countercultural roots to the world-famous desert convergence it is today.

Image: Renwick Gallery. Ron Blunt

No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man was produced in collaboration with the Burning Man Project, the nonprofit organization responsible for producing the annual Burning Man event in Black Rock City, Nevada. The Burning Man community has been instrumental in suggesting artworks for inclusion in the exhibition. Following the presentation in Cincinnati, the exhibition moves to the Oakland Museum of California from October 12, 2019–February 16, 2020.

Visitors to the exhibition will experience works by contemporary artists Candy Chang, Marco Cochrane, Duane Flatmo, Michael Garlington and Natalia Bertotti, Five Ton Crane Arts Collective, Scott Froschauer, Android Jones and Richard Wilks. Also included are the FoldHaus Art Collective, Aaron Taylor Kuffner, HYBYCOZO (Yelena Filipchuk and Serge Beaulieu), Christopher Schardt and others.

Burning Man is a hotbed of artistic expression and innovation through its shared principles. Enormous experimental art installations are erected and many are ritually burned to the ground. The event thrives on the gifts, radical self-expression and participation of those who attend, with a special reverence for art that is created through innovation and community contributions, the work is uniquely generated by the citizens of Black Rock City.

“It is one of the most influential movements in contemporary American art and culture,” said Cameron Kitchin, Cincinnati Art Museum’s Louis and Louise Dieterle Nippert Director. “The visual culture created in conjunction with the Burning Man gathering each year is a democratic and inclusive model of artistic expression. Working with the thinkers and artists who create the culture challenges the very notion of an art museum.”

David J Brown, guest curator for the exhibition at the Cincinnati Art Museum said, “The highly imaginative art that happens in the desert is fueled by the Burning Man Community, where everyone

contributes their imagination and capabilities to support radical co-creation. The Ten Principles support the notion that everyone is a radical artist, be radically involved, and radically celebrate who you are. The art that is created reflects this beautiful idea.”

The name “No Spectators” comes from a long-standing saying at Burning Man. Atkinson said, “You are encouraged to fully participate. It’s all about being there, being fully present, and not just observing. There are no outsiders. Everyone is part of the experience.”

Image: Renwick Gallery. Ron Blunt.

In this spirit, the Cincinnati Museum will be reaching out for volunteer participation and developing methods of experiencing the exhibit that allow for all who visit to engage in the spirit of Burning Man.

A variety of public programs will accompany the exhibition. Information will be available in the spring on the museum’s website. The museum will have a community celebration to kick off the exhibition at the Art After Dark on Friday, April 26, 5–8 p.m. The public can follow the museum’s social media accounts for exhibition updates and share their exhibition experiences with the hashtag #NoSpectators.

Consistent with the Burning Man principle of gifting, No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man will be on view to the public for free. General admission to the Cincinnati Art Museum is also free. Support for the Cincinnati presentation of this exhibition is provided by the August A. Rendigs, Jr. Foundation.

No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man is organized by the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

The museums especially thank colleagues from the Burning Man Project, a nonprofit public benefit corporation, for their close collaboration and assistance throughout the preparation of this exhibition and tour.

Lead support for the exhibition was provided by Intel and BentlyFoundation. Support for the exhibition’s tour is provided by the C. F. Foundation, Atlanta, Georgia and the William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment Fund. To learn more, visit:

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See how the Cincinnati Art Museum is celebrating a special 150 year milestone.

Credit: Charley Harper (1922–2007), United States, “Gazelle in the Grass (Daytime)”, circa 1961, gouache, Museum Purchase: Bequest of Mr. and Mrs. Walter J. Wichgar, 2008.17, © Estate of Charley Harper

Delve into the history and legacy of one of the most esteemed art schools in the Midwest in the special exhibition Art Academy of Cincinnati at 150: A Celebration in Drawings and Printson view February 1–April 28, 2019 at the Cincinnati Art Museum.

In honor of the Art Academy of Cincinnati’s (AAC) 150th anniversary celebration, the Cincinnati Art Museum selected more than 90 masterful drawings and prints by AAC alumni and faculty from the museum’s permanent collection.

Created by widely-recognized artists including Tom Wesselmann, Elizabeth Nourse, Charley Harper, John Henry Twachtman and Thom Shaw, many of the artworks have rarely been displayed, and 25 works will be on view for the first time. Moreover, the exhibition showcases the accomplishments of celebrated artists living and working in the community, such as John A. Ruthven, Gary Gaffney and Constance McClure.

The Cincinnati Art Museum and the AAC share a closely intertwined history. The Academy initially opened in 1869 as the McMicken School of Design, which evolved into the School of Design of University of Cincinnati. In 1887, known as the Art Academy of Cincinnati, the school moved to the building adjacent to the museum. The AAC and Cincinnati Art Museum remained side-by-side until the Academy announced its separation from the museum in 1998.

In 2005, the AAC opened a new campus in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood in downtown Cincinnati, where it stands today. The AAC operates presently as a private college of art and design with a mission to create and sustain forward-thinking, contemporary visual artists and designers whose creative contributions make a substantial difference in the world.

Cincinnati Art Museum Curator of Prints Kristin Spangenberg and Curator of American Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings Julie Aronson, curated the exhibition together.

“The Art Academy of Cincinnati has long been a leader in art education and a hub for artistic experimentation and innovation,” says Aronson. “As a result, the Academy has fostered the talent of many important and sometimes groundbreaking artists, enhancing the city’s international reputation as a vital cultural center.”

“The Cincinnati Art Museum is committed to representing the impressive talent in our region,” adds Spangenberg. “This exhibition is the museum’s way of honoring successful artists who began their careers right here in Cincinnati.” Many additional works by artists associated with the AAC may be seen in the museum’s permanent collection galleries.

Related programs will be held at the museum in conjunction with the run of the exhibition. They include: Public Tour with ASL interpretation and Artist Workshop: Old Master Techniques in Painting on February 16, Gallery Experience: Memories from the Art Academy on February 17, Wee Wednesday: Wee Cincinnatians on February 27, Artist Workshop: Printmaking on March 16, Family First Saturday: The City on April 6, and Artist Workshop: Figure Drawing on April 20. To learn more, please visit

Art Academy of Cincinnati at 150: A Celebration in Drawings and Prints is presented by Fund Evaluation Group (FEG) and will be on view in the Schiff Gallery and Balcony, Galleries 234 and 235. Admission is free.


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Read on for a sneak peek inside the exhibition that celebrates the era of opulence in Paris 1900: City of Entertainment at the Cincinnati Art Museum.


Henri Gervex (1852–1929), An Evening at the Pré-Catelan, 1909, oil on canvas, Musée Carnavalet, Paris, © Musée Carnavalet/Roger-Viollet

Experience the splendor of the French capital at turn of the twentieth century in Paris 1900: City of Entertainment, on view at the Cincinnati Art Museum from March 1–May 12, 2019. Organized by the Petit Palais Museum of Fine Arts with additional loans from other institutions in the City of Paris Museums, this exhibition presents more than 200 works of art made at the turn of the century in the vibrant and rapidly changing city.

In the spirit of the landmark International Exposition of 1900 that transformed the city and drew 51 million visitors, the exhibition is intended to introduce the American public to the Belle Époque (“Beautiful Era”) of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a period known for fantasy, excess and boundless faith in progress through technology and design. The period gave rise to forms of entertainment that remain vital today, such as cabaret, cinema and even the bicycle.

Paintings and prints by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec will join sculptures by Auguste Rodin, Antoine Bourdelle and Camille Claudel. The dual legacy of artist and actress Sarah Bernhardt is explored, alongside a rare suite of Art Nouveau furniture and celebrated examples of art pottery and glass. Collectively, these works give a sense of the wide range of creative endeavor that characterized the cultural hub of Europe.

Paris 1900 immerses visitors in the era’s sparkling atmosphere of elegance, pleasure and festivity. Iconic images from Parisian cafes and cabarets, including the Moulin Rouge, show popular sides of Parisian culture that were often closely intertwined with the fine arts. Clips from early films, a medium that was just beginning to find broad appeal in 1900, further bring the city to life.

“We are thrilled to bring to Cincinnati a truly immersive look at turn-of-the-century Paris, drawing on the foremost collections of this material from the City of Paris Museums. From the organic beauty of Art Nouveau ornament, to the incomparable style of Parisian women, from bohemian café and cabaret culture to the pursuits of high society, and especially works by the great artists of the age—Rodin and Toulouse-Lautrec, alongside outstanding artists and designers whose names are less well known today—this show is sure to delight all who visit,” says Peter Jonathan Bell, Cincinnati Art Museum Associate Curator of European Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings.

The Cincinnati Art Museum is the second of three partners in the United States to present this exhibition, which was originally presented at the Petit Palais in 2014. Paris 1900: City of Entertainment is on view at the Frist Art Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, until January 6. After the Cincinnati run, the exhibition will be on view at the Portland Art Museum in Oregon from June 8 through September 8, 2019.

This exhibition is presented by CFM International. It is organized with the generous support of the Harold C. Schott Foundation. Paris 1900: City of Entertainment will be on view in the Western & Southern galleries (galleries 232 and 233). It is organized by the Petit Palais Museum of Fine Arts, with exceptional loans from the Musée Carnavalet–History of Paris and the Palais Galliera Museum of Fashion, Paris Musées.

Tickets for Paris 1900: City of Entertainment are free for museum members. Tickets will soon be available for purchase by the general public at the Cincinnati Art Museum front desk and online at Photography is permitted, but no flash. On social media, use the hashtag #Paris1900.

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Our art guru shares a peek inside new work coming to the Cincinnati Art Museum that truly draws a line in the sand.

A group of Tibetan monks from the Drepung Gomang Monastery will visit the Cincinnati Art Museum to create a sacred sand mandala in the museum’s Great Hall November 13–18.

A group of Tibetan monks from the Drepung Gomang Monastery, a Buddhist monastery in South India founded in 1416, will visit the Cincinnati Art Museum to create a sacred sand mandala in the museum’s Great Hall from November 13–18.

Admission to the museum and access to view the work is free and people of all ages are encouraged to attend this remarkable program.

Visitors will be able to view the sand mandala creation from 11 a.m.–5 p.m. daily, and until 8 p.m. on Thursday, November 15. An opening ceremony will take place on Tuesday, November 13 at 11 a.m., and a closing and dissolution ceremony will be held on Sunday, November 18 at 2 p.m. A special REC Reads program will feature stories and art-making related to the mandala project on Wednesday, November 14 at 11:30 a.m. in the Rosenthal Education Center.

Sand painting is an ancient Tibetan art form constructed as vehicle to generate compassion. Eight monks will lay millions of grains of colored sand into place to create intricate designs over the course of six days, forming a diagram of the enlightened mind and the ideal world.

The sand, colored with vegetable dyes or opaque tempera, is poured onto the mandala platform with a narrow metal funnel called a chakpur“. The chakpur is scraped by another metal rod causing a vibration by which grains of sand trickle out. The two chakpurs are said to symbolize the union of wisdom and compassion.

The visit is part of a tour throughout the U.S. to share Tibetan Buddhism and demonstrate the artistic accomplishments of the people of Tibet. In addition, they hope to raise money to ensure the survival of the Tibetan culture. Proceeds from the sale of crafts and jewelry at tour stops are used to house, feed and educate the monks and surrounding community, including orphans and refugees.

This is the third time these monks have created a sand mandala at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Other Cincinnati visits have resulted in sand creations at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County and at Mount St. Joseph University.

In general, all mandalas have outer, inner and secret meaning. On the outer level they represent the world in its divine form; on the inner level, they represent a map by which the ordinary human mind is transformed into the enlightened mind; and on the secret level, they predict the primordially perfect balance of the subtle energies of the body and the clear light dimension of the mind.

The creation of a sand painting is said to affect purification and healing on these three levels. When finished, to symbolize the impermanence of all that exists, the colored sands are swept up and poured into a nearby river or stream where the waters carry healing energies throughout the world.

The mandala is an ancient art form of Tibetan Buddhism. The term mandala means “world harmony” and the three-dimensional artworks are carefully constructed from dyed sand particles to represent the traditions of Buddhism.

Visitors can continue the celebration of Asian culture in special exhibition The Fabric of India, on view through January 6, 2019 in the Western & Southern Galleries on the museum’s second floor. Tickets can be purchased online or at the Visitor Services Desk. Collecting Calligraphy: Arts of the Islamic World is on view in the Manuel D. and Rhoda Mayerson Gallery and Sara M. and Michelle Vance Waddell Gallery (G124 and 125), across from the museum’s Terrace Café. Free admission.

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Fall is officially here, and so is this one-of-a-kind lineup of new exhibitions at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Keep reading as our art guru gives us a sneak peek inside.


*= Tickets required. CAM members receive free tickets. Learn more about membership here.

1. Life: Gillian Wearing*

Gillian Wearing, Me as an Artist in 1984, 2014, chromogenic print. © Gillian Wearing. Courtesy of the artist, Tanya BonakdarGallery, New York, Maureen Paley, London and Regen Projects, Los Angeles

October 5–December 30, 2018 | Free for Fotofocus pass holders in October

You do not have to be yourself in this exhibition featuring British conceptual artist Gillian Wearing. Wearing’s photographs and videos illuminate unspoken dimensions of our most common relationships and acts, shedding light on the ways we inhabit personae and expose or conceal interior thoughts and desires. Life includes a concise selection of the artist’s works along with several new projects receiving their world premiere in Cincinnati. Learn more.

2. The Fabric of India*

October 19, 2018–January 6, 2019

Border for a Dress (detail), cotton muslin with beetle wing-cases and gilded silver, poss. Hyderabad,  Andhra Pradesh/Telangana, ca. 1850, Given by Mrs. Mary Gordon, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Embark on an adventure through India without leaving Cincinnati. Organized by the prestigious Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and making its debut in the U.S., The Fabric of India showcases the richness of Indian textiles and fashion from the fifteenth century to today. A stunning range of historic dress, heirloom fabrics and cutting-edge garments will be on view. Learn more.

3. Collecting Calligraphy: Arts of the Islamic World

Now–January 27, 2019

Signed by Sultan Ali Mashhadi (d. 1520), Afghanistan, Herat Timurid period, Page from the Diwan (collected works) of Sultan Husayn Mirza, circa 1490, with later additions, colored inks, and gold on blue paper, Cincinnati Art Museum; Gift of JoLynn M. and  ByronW. Gustin, 2016.372.


Did you know that the Cincinnati Art Museum has been collecting Islamic calligraphy for over 70 years? This free special exhibition celebrates CAM’s collection and explores the prominence and pervasiveness of calligraphic art. Discover richly illuminated folios from poetic and historic manuscripts, pages from the Qur’an, calligraphic practice sheets and political decrees from Iran, Turkey, India, Spain and Syria. Learn more.

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Behold the beauty of script in Collecting Calligraphy: Arts of the Islamic World at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Our art columnist gives us an inside look.

Explore the craftsmanship, skill, beauty and function of calligraphy from the ninth to the twentieth centuries in the special exhibition Collecting Calligraphy: Arts of the Islamic Worldon view at the Cincinnati Art Museum September 7, 2018–January 27, 2019.

The exhibition features 55 works on paper including richly-illuminated folios from historic manuscripts, pages from the Qur’an, calligraphic practice sheets and political decrees from a myriad of countries, including Spain, Turkey, Syria, Iran and India. This diverse collection of artworks from the museum’s collection have never before been seen together. Many of these items will be on public display for the first time.

The Cincinnati Art Museum has been acquiring Islamic calligraphy since the 1940s and houses one of the most significant collections in the Midwest. Collecting Calligraphy celebrates a recent gift to the museum from JoLynn and Byron Gustin. The Gustins, Cincinnati residents and active museum patrons, have been collecting Islamic calligraphy since the 1970s. The exhibition also includes works from the permanent collection, including a 1977 acquisition from Edwin Binney 3rd (1925–1986), the progenitor of one of the most important encyclopedic collections of South Asian and Persian painting in the US, now housed at the San Diego Museum of Art. 

Cincinnati Art Museum Curator of South Asian Art, Islamic Art and Antiquities Ainsley M. Cameron organized the exhibition. “These sumptuous works of Islamic calligraphy reveal incredible skill and craftsmanship, offering a glimpse into cultures where the art of the book is revered,” says Cameron. “From the precise position of each line of text to the delicately drawn illumination, each detail works together on the page to create a unified composition.” 

Collecting Calligraphy will be on view in The Manuel D. and Rhoda Mayerson Gallery and Sara M. and Michelle Vance Waddell Gallery (G124 and 125), across from the museum’s Terrace Café, September 7, 2018–January 27, 2019. Admission is free and photography is permitted. A free catalogue will be available to visitors in the exhibition galleries.

Image credit: Signed by Sultan Ali Mashhadi (d. 1520), Afghanistan, Herat Timurid period, Page from the Diwan (collected works) of Sultan Husayn Mirza, circa 1490, with later additions, colored inks, and gold on blue paper, Cincinnati Art Museum; Gift of JoLynn  M. and Bryon W. Gustin, 2016.372

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A Taste of Duveneck Presents: The Art of Wine at the Cincinnati Art Museum on June 8. Keep reading for all the palette-pleasing details.


Eat, drink and dance the night away while supporting a great cause at the Cincinnati Art Museum’s 28th annual event, A Taste of Duveneck Presents: The Art of Wine, Friday, June 8, 6:30–10 p.m.

Enjoy delicious local food, exceptional wine and beer, live music from the Naked Karate Girls, a silent auction and exclusive access to the entire museum, including special exhibition Terracotta Army: Legacy of the First Emperor of China.

The event will feature bites from dozens of vendors in the Great Hall and outdoors in the Alice Bimel Courtyard including the BonBonerie, Eli’s Barbeque, Dewey’s Pizza, Eddie Merlot’s Steakhouse, Mazunte and many more. A large, diverse selection of craft beer and premium wine will also be available to taste.

This year, all proceeds from A Taste of Duveneck Presents: The Art of Wine will help support the Rosenthal Education Center (REC). The REC is a dedicated space where families can discover the Cincinnati Art Museum’s collection in a fun and hands-on manner. Themes for the interactive space are changed twice a year and are based on the permanent collection, special exhibitions, and/or elements of art and world cultures.

General admission tickets are $85 per person and available online. Donor opportunities are available. For more information, please contact or (513) 639-2962.

The Cincinnati Art Museum would like to thank the following organizations for their gracious sponsorships: Jaguar Land Rover Cincinnati, Cincinnati Magazine, GBQ and the Cincinnati International Wine Festival. In addition, the art museum would like to recognize the generous donations of several of our members, supporters and friends who have helped to plan and contribute to this event.

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This week, our art guru from the Cincinnati Art Museum writes about one of their own, who just received an impressive national award. Click for more about it.

Emily Holtrop of the Cincinnati Art Museum.

We’re excited to announce that the National Art Education Association (NAEA) has named our very own Emily Holtrop, Director of Learning & Interpretation at the Cincinnati Art Museum, as the recipient of the 2018 National Museum Education Art Educator award.

This prestigious award, determined through a peer review of nominations, recognizes the exemplary contributions, service, and achievements of one outstanding NAEA member annually at the National level within their division. The award will be presented at the NAEA National Convention in Seattle, Washington, March 22–24, 2018.

NAEA President Kim Huyler Defibaugh states, “This award is being given to recognize excellence in professional accomplishment and service by a dedicated art educator. Emily Holtrop exemplifies the highly qualified art educators active in education today: leaders, teachers, students, scholars and advocates who give their best to their students and the profession.”

With over 17 years of museum education experience, Holtrop has worked in the Division of Learning & Interpretation at the Cincinnati Art Museum since 2002. Her previous position with the museum was as the former assistant curator for school and teacher programs. In her current role, she oversees the museum’s interpretive and educational initiatives. This includes public programs for all audiences and abilities as well as gallery interpretation.

Before coming to the Cincinnati Art Museum, Holtrop was the Education Outreach Coordinator for the Historical Museum of Southern Florida and the Caribbean, now History Miami.

Holtrop served as the National Art Education Association Museum Education Division Director from 2015–17. She also served on the Board of Directors for the Association of Midwest Museums and the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education. Holtrop holds an A.A. in Art History from Grand Rapids Community College, a B.A. in Public History from Western Michigan University and an MSc. in Architectural History from the University College of London-Bartlett School of Architecture. She currently resides in Dayton, Kentucky.

NAEA is the professional association for art educators. Members include elementary, secondary, middle level and high school art teachers; university and college professors; education directors who oversee education in our nation’s fine art museums, administrators and supervisors who oversee art education in school districts, state departments of education, arts councils; and teaching artists throughout the United States and many foreign countries. For more information about the association and its awards program visit the NAEA website at

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Our art columnist shares fascinating history behind Boîte-en-valise that’s now in Cincinnati and has an interesting connection to the area.

Photo Credit: Marcel Duchamp (1887–1968), France, active in United States, Box in a Valise from or by Marcel Duchamp or Rrose Sélavy(Boîte-en-valise de ou par Marcel Duchamp ou Rrose Sélavy), conceived 1935–41, edition E assembled in Paris in 1963, green linen imitation leather covered box containing mixed-media assemblage/collage of miniature replicas, photographs, and color reproductions of works by Duchamp, Gift of Anne W. Harrison and Family in memory of Agnes Sattler Harrison and Alexina “Teeny” Sattler Duchamp, 16/17.27, © Association Marcel Duchamp / ADAGP, Paris / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York 2018

Marcel Duchamp’s Boîteen-valise on view now through May 6, 2018

When Marcel Duchamp released Boîteen-valise (Box in a Valise) on January 1, 1941, it transformed twentieth-century art.

The artwork is a “portable museum” that contains 68 small-scale replicas, models and reproductions of Duchamp’s works, including paintings, drawings, objects and “ready-mades” (found objects presented as art). 

Each work in Boîteen-valise is labeled with title, medium, date and, in some cases, the owner of the original. Rather than creating new pieces, Duchamp was most interested in making replicas. This process was an extension of his other “ready-mades,” which challenged the ideas of originality and the value of unique works.

Packing artworks into a suitcase made it possible to smuggle the work out of France during the Nazi occupation. The Boîteen-valise was a way of reconstituting Duchamp’s life’s work and circulating it to a wide audience. It contains miniatures of his painting Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2 (1912), which scandalized Americans when it was exhibited; the construction The Large Glass; and Fountain, a urinal signed with the pseudonym “R. Mutt.” 

Duchamp was a French-American painter, sculptor, chess player and writer whose work is associated with conceptual art and avant-garde art movements including Cubism and Dada. His goal was to serve the mind. 

The Boîteen-valise has a special connection to Cincinnati. In 1954 Duchamp married Alexina “Teeny” Sattler, a Cincinnati native. The work was given to Teeny’s sister Agnes and her husband with a special dedication on the Coeurs volants (Fluttering Hearts).

Photograph courtesy of the Harrison Family.