David Winton Bell Gallery

Past Exhibitions

June 9, 2018 - July 8, 2018

Pushing Painting presents three concurrent exhibitions of new and recent work by painters living and working in New England. While differing in terms of subjects and techniques, the work of Elise Ansel, Nicole Duennebier and Duane Slick all demonstrate the vitality of contemporary painting in New England and the ever-present potential for the painted image to attract, engage and prompt reflection on how we view the world and our place within it.

Curated by: Ian Alden Russell

Image (left): Elise Ansel, Medium Study IV for Dutch Flowers, 2018
Image (middle): Nicole Duennebier, Bearded Tooth and Golden Sac, 2014
Image (right): Duane Slick, A Voice from the Prairie Grass, 2017

Location Bell Gallery and List Art Lobby
March 31, 2018 - May 27, 2018

Artists have participated in scientific and artistic explorations of the iconic landscapes of Earth’s polar regions since the late-nineteenth century. Today, the crisis of climate change and the associated threat of ice melt and sea level rise have drawn a legion of international artists to Greenland, the Arctic, and the Antarctic. There, they document the beauty and the destruction of the region, in hopes of drawing viewers’ attention to the impending loss and eliciting action toward change.

33° presents the work of six artists: Danish sound artist Jacob Kirkegaard and photographers Olaf Otto Becker (German), Camille Seaman (Native American/African American), James Balog (American), Jean de Pomereu (French), and Iain Brownlie Roy (Scottish).  Kirkegaard’s forty-minute soundspace Isfald (Icefall) will be on view at the David Winton Bell Gallery, alongside photographs of glaciers, icebergs, and the Greenland icesheet by Becker and Seaman. Photomurals by Becker, Seaman, Balog, de Pomereu, and Roy will be displayed on the exterior of buildings across Brown’s campus.

Curated by: Jo-Ann Conklin
Image:  Camille Seaman, Breaching Iceberg, Greenland, August 8, 2008

Location Bell Gallery, List Art Lobby, and various sites on campus
March 31, 2018 - May 27, 2018

33° extends across campus with photo murals of polar landscapes and animals—by Becker, Seaman, James Balog, Jean de Pomereu, and Iain Brownlie Roy—exhibited on the exterior of university buildings.

Curated by: Jo-Ann Conklin
Image:  rendering of James Balog, Greenland Ice Sheet, 28 June 2009, Adam Le Winter surveys Birthday Canyon on Prince Enginnering Laboratory, Brook St.

February 24, 2018 - March 11, 2018

The David Winton Bell Gallery and the Department of Visual Art present the work of student artists in Brown University's 38th annual Student Exhibition.

Location Bell Gallery and List Art Lobby
January 10, 2018 - February 11, 2018

The struggle to define what it means to be Mexican in an era of rapid change and instability profoundly affected Mexican art in the twentieth century. Drawn from the Bell Gallery collection—and including works by Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Graciela Iturbide, Salvador Lutteroth, Alfredo Ramos Martinez, Leopoldo Méndez, Diego Rivera, David Siqueiros, Mariana Yampolsky, and Francisco Zúñiga—the exhibition raises questions about who is allowed, capable, or obligated to create culture. Who has the right to speak for Mexico?

Curated by Rica Maestas
Image: Graciela Iturbide, Mujer Ángel (Angel Woman), 1979. Gelatin silver print.

Location List Art Lobby
November 11, 2017 - February 11, 2018

Festivals, Funerals, and New Life presents new and recent works by renowned sculptor Melvin Edwards alongside rarely exhibited historical works and pieces completed with the artist’s late wife, poet and activist Jayne Cortez. Sculptures and installations composed with industrial steel, chain, and machine parts broadly reflect Edwards’s engagement with European neocolonialism, histories of race, labor, violence and African diaspora. Bringing works from the 1970s into conversation with new and recent works, the exhibition affirms a continuity of themes, concerns, and commitments throughout Edwards’s career, spanning the Civil Rights Movement and continuing through recent and ongoing social justice movements. 

Curated by Ian Alden Russell
Image: Melvin Edwards, Steel Life (After Winter), 2017. Welded steel. © 2017 Melvin Edwards/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Courtesy Alexander Gray Associates, New York.

Location Bell Gallery
November 11, 2017 - December 21, 2017

Considered to be one of the artist’s most important bodies of work, Carrie Mae Weems’ Kitchen Table Series interweaves themes of race, class, gender, friendship, love, loss, power, and motherhood. The intimate and often political content of these images finds common ground around the kitchen table, transcending the separation of domestic and civic space. First exhibited in 1990, the Kitchen Table Series set the stage for future contemporary artists to explore issues of identity.

Curated by Jo-Ann Conklin with Rica Maestas
Image: Carrie Mae Weems, Untitled from the Kitchen Table Series, 1990. Gelatin silver print.

Location List Art Lobby
September 6, 2017 - October 29, 2017

What Remains includes artwork created over the past two years, during a period of transition as the artist moved beyond his well-known Elm Tree Project. The exhibition includes three new bodies of work: planks that combine elm with carbon composite and progress to high-gloss carbon surfaces that reflect and mirror light sources and viewers; ominous freestanding sculpture with thorny surfaces of resin-coated carbon fiber draped and wrapped over armatures; and wall works that cross over between drawing and sculpture.

Curated by Jo-Ann Conklin
Image: Whiptails of Illumination, 2016

Location Bell Gallery and List Art Lobby
June 10, 2017 - July 9, 2017

Thread on plywood, smoke and foliage, cast pigment on drywall, nail polish on slip-cast porcelain, and electroplated grapevines. Kim Faler’s art is an alchemy of everyday things, cultivating empathy for our ability to apprehend and appreciate beauty in the fleeting moments of life. Through sculpture, installation, photography, and drawing, she makes the mundane mysterious and the common uncanny.

Curated by Ian Alden Russell
Image: Kim Faler, Detail of Sonder, 2016. Electroplated grapevines (copper, chrome, gold), latex paint, epoxy and steel. Originally commissioned and produced by Artpace, San Antonio.


Location Bell Gallery
June 10, 2017 - July 9, 2017

While Still Before Us After All places Kai Franz’s art in conversation with the architecture of List Art Building, designed by iconic American modernist Philip Johnson. New sculptures included here were conceived in response to the grids of concrete, stone, and wood in the List Art lobby. The sculptures are reminiscent of the texture and tone of Brutalist concrete architecture, yet the variability and dynamics of their forms appear organic and expressive.

Curated by Ian Alden Russell 
Image: Kai Franz, Reset, 2017. CNC-code, CAM-software, plopper (dual-axis precision deposition system), polyurethane, sand.

Location List Art Lobby
March 18, 2017 - May 28, 2017

Pierre Huyghe is renowned for making art that challenges the conventions of the exhibition, exploring the possibilities of its dynamic experience. In the artist’s words, he constructs “time-based situations as a set of circumstances and conditions in which emergence, rhythm and variable are indeterminate and exist beyond our presence.” This exhibition is the New England premiere of his recent film Untitled (Human Mask) (2014). Set in the landscape of manmade devastation that surrounds Fukushima, Japan, the film confronts us with an eerie reflection of the tenuous divisions between human and animal.

Curated by Ian Alden Russell
Image: Pierre HuygheUntitled (Human Mask), (Film Still), 2014. Film, color, stereo, sound, 2:66. Running time: 19'07". Courtesy of the artist, Hauser & Wirth, London, and Anna Lena Films, Paris. © Pierre Huyghe

Location Bell Gallery
March 18, 2017 - May 28, 2017

A series of x-rays. Bright white spots record exposure of the film to pieces of trinitite by Gabriel Martinez. Named after “Trinity” — the site of the first atomic weapon detonation in 1945 near Alamogordo, New Mexico — trinitite is created when an atomic bomb explodes over gypsum sands, fusing the granules into a radioactive glass. Gabriel Martinez’s grandmother collected the trinitite after the blast.

Curated by Ian Alden Russell
Image: Gabriel Martinez, Jar of Trinitite (Taster's Choice/Proving Ground), 2015. Digital print. Courtesy of the artist. Originally commissioned and produced by Artpace, San Antonio.

Location List Art Center Lobby