The Bowers Museum of Cultural Art contains a mix of permanent and special exhibits focusing on both the local California history and culture as well as unique collections of items from all over the world. Currently, the special exhibits are:
LATITUDES: Latin American Masters from the FEMSA Collection
Running: Now through January 17, 2010
This exhibition features a selection of paintings from leading Latin American beverage company FEMSA`s prestigious collection of more than 1,000 modern and contemporary works of Mexican and Latin American artists.
This thematic exhibition explores the 20th century art movements and styles of Cubism, Portraiture and Landscapes, Identity, Mexican Muralism, Surrealism and Abstraction, and includes works by many noted artists, including Leonora Carrington, Frida Kahlo, Wilfredo Lam, Roberto Matta, Jose Clemente Orozco, Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, Jesús Soto, and Rufino Tamayo.
Masters of Adornment: The Miao People of China
This important collection of exquisite textiles and silver jewelry on loan to and from the Bowers Museum’s permanent collection highlights the beauty and wealth of the Miao peoples of southwest China. Symbols of status and culture, the elaborate textiles in this exhibition include finely pleated skirts, complex batik pattered cloth, intricate silk embroidery and shining textiles woven with metal. Over 50 examples of ornately designed and created silver bracelets, necklaces and decorative ornaments compliment and complete the exhibition of late 19th and 20th century Miao regalia. More than an examination of masterful techniques and beautiful style these objects reveal hundreds of years of Miao history and tradition and, the patience and dedication to achieve beauty.
The Baroque World of Fernando Botero
Running: Now through December 6, 2009
Colombian artist Fernando Botero`s unique style is recognized and renowned world-wide for the voluminous forms and sensuous figures found within his painting, sculpture and works on paper.
Botero`s observations and portrayals often take on religion, politics, and history as subject with an equally critical and comical approach. The Baroque World of Fernando Botero includes over 100 paintings, sculptures and drawings dating from the 1950`s to present. Compiled from Botero`s personal collection, this is an opportunity to view many never exhibited works that the artist reacquired or never parted with. Themes such as faith and contemporary life in Latin America, early works and sculpture, and still-life portraits, and subjects that reference European art history, are presented in eight separate sections. Using a broad range of media, the Colombian-born Botero has created a world of his own, one that is at once accessible and enigmatic.More about the Museum
Ancient Arts of China: A 5000 Year Legacy
Running: Now through December 31, 2009
Curated by authorities of Chinese history and culture from the Shanghai Museum, this incredible collection portrays the evolution of Chinese technology, art and culture utilizing rare examples of bronze vessels, mirrors, polychrome potteries, sculptures, porcelains, paintings, ivory carvings and robes.
The museum also contains a rich display of cultural items that tell the story of early California. Three of these permanent exhibits are:
California: The Golden Years
Inspired by the french impressionist painters, but not willing to copy directly, California, The Golden Years
exhibits paintings created by the local artists in the new the new plein air style.
This collection displays art and artifacts from all regions of California. Special emphasis is placed on items from the coastal regions of Southern California.
These galleries show items relating to the latter years of the growth of California. The west and missions are featured prominently in these exhibits.
In the museum is a full service restaurant. This means that it might be a little more expensive with foods that the little ones might or might not enjoy. Check out the web site before relying upon the restaurant to decide if you would like to eat there or before/after you go to the museum.
There are two gift shops in the Museum. One is located at the edit of one of the special exhibits and caters to items related to the exhibit you just experienced. The other contains general items relating to the exhibits as well as general museum related items that are quite common in most museum gift shops. Some items can be found on-line. Of special note are the catalogs that contain pictures from the different exhibits. Not only can you get information and pictures of the exhibits, but there is a selection of catalogs from past exhibitions allowing you to get them even though the exhibition is gone.
The Bowers Museum has much to offer, even if you cannot be there in person.