In 2013 collector, connoisseur and longtime Harwood Museum of Art supporter Gus Foster donated a remarkable collection of 391 works of contemporary art by 83 artists to the Museum. This summer, the Harwood Museum of Art will celebrate that extraordinary gift by exhibiting 121 works from the collection and publishing a 96-page full-color catalog featuring an essay by Evan M. Maurer, Director Emeritus of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts.

The Gus Foster Collection, distinguished by its quality, focus, and depth, is unsurpassed in the number of iconic works created by contemporary artists working in the acclaimed art colony of Taos, N.M. The many prominent East and West Coast artists represented in this gift – including Larry Bell, Lynda Benglis, Vija Celmins, Ron Cooper, Ron Davis and Ken Price- speak to the strong connection that Taos has long had with the national and international art worlds. In particular, the collection, which is on display through Sept. 7 at the Harwood Museum of Art, explores in depth the Taos-Los Angeles contemporary art connection.

Artists Ken Price and Larry Bell moved permanently from Los Angeles to Taos in the 1970s, followed by Ron Cooper, Gus Foster and - later - Ron Davis. Other artists such as Lee Mullican spent part of each year in Taos. The collection also demonstrates Foster’s commitment to artists who are less well known, with this summer’s exhibition featuring work by artists including Angie Coleman, Tom Dixon, Cody Riddle, and Suzanne Wiggin.

Taking over three of the Museum’s galleries, Highlights from the Gus Foster Collection will demonstrate the wide range of media in which contemporary artists create by presenting work ranging from oil and acrylic paintings, to ceramic sculptures, to objects created with aluminum-coated mylar. Works on paper will be exhibited in the George E. Foster, Jr. Gallery of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs, named in honor of Gus Foster’s father.

In order to share more work from this extraordinary collection, the initial installation of 33 works on paper will rotate in July so that an additional 31 works on paper may be exhibited. Thanks to a generous grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Harwood Museum of Art’s entire permanent collection, including the Gus Foster Collection, may be viewed beginning in March 2015 at Harwood Museum Collections.

EXHIBITION TOURS
Professionally trained docents will lead tours of Highlights from the Gus Foster Collection at 1 p.m. every Sunday while the exhibition is on view through Sept. 7. Group tours may be scheduled by contacting the Harwood Museum of Art at education@harwoodmuseum.org.

The Harwood Museum of Art is located at 238 Ledoux Street, Taos, NM  and is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays. For more information, visit: Harwood Museum.