Ruminations on Memory

November 19, 2021–March 14, 2022
Appleby Foundation Exhibition Hall

Artworks are vessels for processing, recalling, and reflecting on the past. Artists often draw upon materials from their own pasts and grasp at fleeting moments in time in the creation of an object. For the viewer, observation of an artwork can draw out personal memories.

Featuring a rare presentation of all nine prints from Robert Rauschenberg’s Ruminations portfolio, Judy Chicago’s Retrospective in a Boxportfolio, and selections from the Museum’s Collection, this exhibition contends with the act of remembrance and reflection. Additionally, visitors will be able to experience Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s “Untitled” (L.A.), jointly owned by Art Bridges and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. “Untitled” (L.A.) is one of the artist’s iconic interactive candy installations where memories are engaged not only through sight but through sound, touch, taste, and smell as well.

Artworks in a variety of media explore various ways of remembering, including individual memories that focus on the moments from an artist’s past; generational memory that looks back to one’s ancestors, whether recent or long past; and collective memory, wherein in an image might evoke bygone times that balance between constructed and real. Through these artworks that ruminate upon the past, viewers may discover the stirrings of their own thoughts and recollections prompted by the works before them.

Ruminations on Memory is on view in conjunction with A Living Language: Cherokee Syllabary and Contemporary Art. This exhibition is organized by the Asheville Art Museum and curated by Hilary Schroeder, assistant curator.


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