Sunday January 20, 2019
Tags for: The Cleveland Museum of Art’s Upcoming Exhibitions through Fall 2019
  • Press Release

The Cleveland Museum of Art’s Upcoming Exhibitions through Fall 2019

exterior of the CMA building

Cleveland, OH (January 20, 2019) –The Cleveland Museum of Art (CMA) today announced 12 major exhibitions scheduled through Fall 2019. Several feature collaborations with national and international peer institutions, while others include work by contemporary artists from across the globe.

Exhibition highlights include Shinto: Discovery of the Divine in Japanese Art, a project many years in the making and the first examination of Shinto art featuring objects from collections in both the United States and Japan, including many works designated as Important Cultural Properties by the Japanese government. This exhibition will be on view only at the CMA. Additionally, the CMA will present Michelangelo: Mind of the Master, an examination of Michelangelo’s achievements through more than two dozen of his finest surviving drawings from the Teylers Museum, the oldest museum in the Netherlands, established in 1784. This will be the first time this group of drawings has traveled to the US together.

Exhibitions highlighting the CMA’s collaborative relationship with other major institutions include Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940–1950, an exhibition that documents the first, formative decade of this pioneering African American photographer’s 60-year career, organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, and Medieval Monsters: Terrors, Aliens, Wonders, an evocative exploration of the fantastical beasts in the Middle Ages and the complex social roles they played, featuring the Morgan Library & Museum’s superb collection of illuminated manuscripts. 

Four exhibitions are dedicated to the work of contemporary artists: Second Careers: Two Tributaries in African Art, an exhibition that explores the connections between historical African art and works of art by six leading contemporary African artists; Raúl de Nieves: Fina, the first solo museum exhibition by contemporary artist Raúl de Nieves (Mexican, b. 1983), which features a vibrant, immersive installation at the Transformer Station; Cai Guo-Qiang: Cuyahoga River Lightning, with a commissioned gunpowder drawing by Cai Guo Qiang (Chinese, b. 1957) that references the 50-year anniversary of the burning of the Cuyahoga River; and Ámà: The Gathering Place, the CMA’s first commissioned site-specific artwork for the Ames Family Atrium, by Emeka Ogboh (Nigerian, b. 1977), a 2018 Hugo Boss prize finalist. These four exhibitions will be on view only in Cleveland.

*Please note: the information provided below is a partial listing and is subject to change. Please confirm scheduling and details by calling Kelley Notaro Schreiber at 216.707.6898 or by emailing


Featured Exhibition

Shinto: Discovery of the Divine in Japanese Art
April 9–June 30, 2019
The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Exhibition Hall

Shinto: Discovery of the Divine in Japanese Art introduces works exemplifying the worship of divinities called kami (pronounced kah-mee) from the 10th century through the 19th century. The exhibition and its accompanying catalogue take a thematic approach to understanding the rich world of art related to this religious tradition. From costumes worn in dances and theatrical performances at shrines to paintings of medieval pilgrimage routes and images representing the merging of kami and Buddhist deities, the exhibition is an expression of the everyday engagement of people with divinities in their midst. Including about 125 works of art in two rotations, it features treasures from Japanese shrines and temples never before seen outside Japan, and a significant number of works designated as Important Cultural Properties by the Japanese government.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue.

The Cleveland Museum of Art gratefully acknowledges:

Presenting Sponsors

Dr. Hiroyuki and Mrs. Mikiko Fujita

Quality Electrodynamics

E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation

Supporting Sponsors

Art Works | National Endowment for the Arts

Japan Foundation

Japan–United States Friendship Commission 

Kenneth S. and Deborah G. Cohen

John D. Proctor Foundation

Thomas & Beatrice Taplin Fund

Additional Support

Blakemore Foundation

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Endowment Fund


Featured Exhibition

Michelangelo: Mind of the Master
Sept 22, 2019 – Jan 5, 2020
The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Exhibition Hall

The name of the Italian Renaissance painter, sculptor, and architect Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475–1564) is synonymous with creative genius and virtuosity. The exhibition Michelangelo: Mind of the Master presents an unprecedented opportunity for museum visitors to experience the brilliance of Michelangelo’s achievements on an intimate scale through more than two dozen of his original drawings.

Michelangelo: Mind of the Master brings to the United States for the first time a group of drawings from the remarkable collection of the Teylers Museum (Haarlem, The Netherlands), which was formed in the 18th century in part from the collection of Queen Christina of Sweden (1626–1689). Additional drawings from the collections of the Cleveland Museum of Art and the J. Paul Getty Museum round out the display. A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the exhibition and includes essays by Emily J. Peters (Cleveland Museum of Art), Julian Brooks (J. Paul Getty Museum), and Carel van Tuyll van Serooskerken (Teylers Museum) that explore Michelangelo’s working methods and major projects, as well as the fascinating history of the ownership of his drawings after his death. 

Organized by the Teylers Museum in collaboration with the Cleveland Museum of Art and the J. Paul Getty Museum. 

Major Sponsor

Mr. and Mrs. A. Chace Anderson

Supporting Sponsor

Josie and Chace Anderson 


Featured Exhibition
Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940–1950
March 23–June 9, 2019
The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Exhibition Gallery

Focusing on extensive new research, Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940–1950 documents the importance of Gordon Parks’s (1912–2006) early experiences—from his immersion in the Chicago Black Renaissance to his friendships with Roy Stryker, Richard Wright, and Ralph Ellison—in shaping his groundbreaking, passionate vision. The exhibition traces his rapid evolution from an accomplished, self-taught practitioner to an independent artistic and journalistic voice widely communicating a meaningful and coherent understanding of critical social and cultural issues.

Organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington in collaboration with The Gordon Parks Foundation. 

Bank of America is proud to be the national sponsor of Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940–1950.

Supporting Sponsor

William S. and Margaret F. Lipscomb

Featured Exhibition

Medieval Monsters: Terrors, Aliens, Wonders
July 7–October 6, 2019
The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Exhibition Gallery

Medieval Monsters: Terrors, Aliens, Wonders leads visitors through the three different ways monsters functioned in medieval societies. “Terrors” explores how monsters enhanced the aura of those in power, be they rulers, knights, or saints. “Aliens” demonstrates how marginalized groups in European societies—such as Jews, Muslims, women, the poor, and the disabled—were further alienated by being depicted as monstrous. The final section, “Wonders,” considers a group of strange beauties and frightful anomalies that populated the medieval world. 

Medieval Monsters is organized by the Morgan Library & Museum, New York. 


Second Careers: Two Tributaries in African Art
October 20, 2019–March 8, 2020
Julia and Larry Pollock Focus Gallery

Second Careers explores the connections between historical African art and contemporary practice through a selection of exemplary highlights from the museum’s African collection and loaned works. CMA objects from nine cultures in Central and West Africa––male and female figures and masks, masquerade costume, a hunter’s tunic, and a prestige throne––are juxtaposed with large-scale installations, sculptures, and photographs by six leading contemporary African artists. 

The exhibition considers the status of canonical African art objects when they begin their “second careers” upon entering museum collections. It simultaneously explores contemporary modes of artistic production in Africa that employ mediums that once served other purposes in everyday life. Focusing more on the conceptual connection between the two contexts of African art, the exhibition considers how contemporary African artists from different generations draw inspiration from and seek transformative encounters with the historical canon. These contexts provide a critical understanding of African art, past and present.


Raúl de Nieves: Fina
February 2–April 28, 2019
CMA at Transformer Station

Raúl de Nieves (Mexican, b. 1983) transforms humble materials into spectacular objects and immersive narrative environments. Fina, the artist’s first solo museum exhibition, features a new site-specific installation: densely textured figurative sculptures populate a central mirrored structure in the Transformer Station’s main gallery. 

While this towering space is illuminated with blue hues that conjure a daytime sky, the adjacent gallery evokes nighttime when two figures dramatically emerge from darkness. Narrative facets of Fina are informed by de Nieves’s childhood experiences of Mexican artistic and cultural traditions filtered through the lens of this moment in history. 

Transformer Station

1460 West 29 Street 

Cleveland, OH 44113

For hours and other information, visit

Supporting Sponsor

Joanne Cohen and Morris Wheeler



As part of Cuyahoga50, a citywide commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the last Cuyahoga River fire and celebration of the progress made since toward clean water for all, the Cleveland Museum of Art presents two exhibitions that highlight the impact of human behavior on the environment. Featuring the work of renowned contemporary artists Cai Guo-Qiang and Edward Burtynsky, these two exhibitions draw attention to current threats to clean, sustainable water and encourage visitors to reflect on individual actions that impact the future of our planet.

Cai Guo-Qiang: Cuyahoga River Lightning
May 25–September 22, 2019
Julia and Larry Pollock Focus Gallery

Cai Guo-Qiang: Cuyahoga River Lightning presents three monumental gunpowder drawings by Chinese artist Cai Guo-Qiang (b. 1957), known for his site-specific artistic fireworks, gunpowder-ignited paintings and installations, and for choosing environmentally friendly material. While Cuyahoga River Lightning (2018) was specifically created for the exhibition, two other works in monochrome and polychrome gunpowder illustrate the artist’s reflections on the state of our planet, wildlife, and the world’s diminishing natural reserves of fresh water. 

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue co-published with Yale University Press.

Water: Edward Burtynsky
June 8–September 22, 2019 
Mark Schwartz and Bettina Katz Photography Gallery

Water: Edward Burtynsky explores humanity’s increasingly stressed relationship with water, the world’s most vital natural resource. Thirteen monumental color photographs by renowned artist Edward Burtynsky (Canadian, b. 1955) survey locales from the Gulf of Mexico to the banks of the Ganges. 

Offering both aesthetic abstraction and concrete data, these hauntingly beautiful images encourage viewers to ponder whether current water-management strategies are among the great human achievements or the most dangerous failures.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue published by Steidl with more than 100 color plates from Burtynsky’s water series. It includes essays by Lord and Wade Davis, renowned anthropologist and Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society.

Water: Edward Burtynsky is organized by the New Orleans Museum of Art. 


Ámà: The Gathering Place
August 2–November 24, 2019
Ames Family Atrium

Ámà: The Gathering Place is an immersive site-specific installation integrating sound, textiles, and sculpture by Emeka Ogboh (Nigerian, b. 1977). It is the CMA’s first commissioned artwork for the Ames Family Atrium and part of an ongoing series of large-scale contemporary installations presented in that space. The work’s point of departure is social role of the atrium within the museum: a soaring light-filled space at the center of the building used by visitors as an area for communing and lively exchange. Ogboh compares it to the ámà—or village square—the physical and cultural center of Igbo life in southeast Nigeria, where he was born. “Both sites,” he explains, “are contact zones, spaces of gathering and ritual activities in their respective settings.” 

On the occasion of the installation, parallels between the Ames Family Atrium and the Igbo village square will be activated, mirroring the global scope of the CMA’s encyclopedic collection. 

Presenting Sponsor

Sarah S. and Alexander M. Cutler


Beyond Truth: Photography after the Shutter
February 10–May 26, 2019 
Mark Schwartz and Bettina Katz Photography Gallery 

Beyond Truth explores figurative scenes and portraits in which artists have altered the “truth” through postproduction techniques ranging from composite printing, multiple exposures, and handwork on negatives and prints to digital capture and manipulation. Drawn mostly from the Cleveland Museum of Art’s collection with additional works from the Fred and Laura Ruth Bidwell Collection and the Akron Art Museum, the show contains work by 23 artists ranging from Henry Peach Robinson and Edward Steichen to Kehinde Wiley and Luis González Palma. The CMA debuts thirteen works, seven of which are recent acquisitions, including photographs by Zanele Muholi, Weegee, and Trevor Paglen.


Color and Comfort: Swedish Modern Design
February 17, 2019–February 9, 2020
Arlene M. and Arthur S. Holden Textile Gallery | Gallery 234

Color and Comfort: Swedish Modern Design presents the modern styling of mid-twentieth-century Swedish design, featuring textiles, ceramics, and glass from the CMA’s collection. Iconic work by Josef Frank will be shown together with work by artisans such as Viola Gråsten, sisters Gocken and Lisbet Jobs, Stig Lindberg, Sven Markelius, and Elizabeth Ulrick in an exhibition featuring themes of nature and pattern, color and contrast, nostalgia for the past, and finding modernity. This dynamic installation explores the idea of comfort and affordability in the modern Swedish home both before and after the Second World War. The introduction of bold, colorful patterning during the 1920s, the national nostalgia for Swedish cultural heritage in the 1930s, and the sparse lines of abstraction in the 1950s and ’60s come together to reveal a particularly Swedish sensibility in modern design—one that’s often used to define a broader modern Scandinavian style.


A Lasting Impression: Gifts of the Print Club of Cleveland
May 5–September 22, 2019
James and Hanna Bartlett Prints and Drawings Gallery

Organized in celebration of the centennial anniversary of the Print Club of Cleveland, this exhibition presents a selection of significant prints generously donated to the museum by the club over the last 100 years. Since its founding in 1919, the Print Club—the first museum affiliate group in the United States—has supported the Cleveland Museum of Art through its twofold mission to enrich the institution’s world-class print collection and to promote interest in the history of printmaking. 

A Lasting Impression, which includes more than 75 gifts by masters Albrecht Dürer, Rembrandt van Rijn, Francisco de Goya, Edgar Degas, Käthe Kollwitz, Pablo Picasso, and Jasper Johns, thematically traces the history of European printmaking over the course of six centuries through subjects ranging from landscape to abstraction and techniques such as woodcut, etching, and screenprint. 

The depth and quality of these works underscore the Print Club’s transformative effect on the Cleveland Museum of Art’s internationally recognized print collection. 

In honor of their centennial, the club has published, in partnership with the CMA, The Print Club of Cleveland: 100 Years, 1919–2019, which features an illustrated selection of notable gifts over the past several decades.

Presenting Sponsor

The Print Club of Cleveland

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