July 20, 2020 - San Jose Museum of Art - 50X50: Stories of Visionary Artists from the Permanent Collection
July 20, 2020

San Jose Museum of Art

Firelei Báez, To see beyond it and to access the places that we know lie outside its walls, 2015. Gouache and ink on paper, 84 1/2 x 50 inches. San José Museum of Art. Museum purchase with funds provided by Tad and Jackson Freese, 2016.04.

Ruth Asawa works on a crocheted-wire sculpture in her living room, ca. 1976. Photo by Allen Nomura.

Alan Rath in his studio, Oakland, California. © Klaus Tilman, 2010.

50X50: Stories of Visionary Artists from the Permanent Collection
A digital catalog online now

San Jose Museum of Art
110 South Market Street
San Jose, California 95113
United States of America
Hours: Friday–Sunday 11am–5pm

T +1 408 271 6840

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In celebration of its 50th anniversary, San José Museum of Art (SJMA) presents a free digital publication titled 50X50: Stories of Visionary Artists from the Collection, highlighting 50 artists from the permanent collection. 50X50 focuses on the lifelong work of artists such as Ruth Asawa, Jay DeFeo, Louise Nevelson, Alan Rath, Leo Villareal, and more through multimedia content—including interviews, audio recordings, and archival documentation of exhibitions and studios. This open-access publication is available for free online and in multiple formats for download, including PDF and EPUB at 50X50.sjmusart.org.

The publication is comprised of 50 artist chapters, written by SJMA assistant curator Kathryn Wade, along with contributions from Susan Sayre Batton, Oshman Executive Director of SJMA; Dr. Letha Ch’ien, assistant professor of art history at Sonoma State University; Peter Lipman, an avid collector and arts patron, and SJMA Trustee; and Hung Liu, an accomplished visual artist and professor emerita at Mills College.

Each artist chapter features high-resolution images and videos of the artist and their work with new scholarship centering on their artistic practice and lives. Included is documentation of exhibitions and artist studios that expand upon their professional and private lives, and their ideas, creative processes, and lasting influences. Each chapter contains detailed footnotes along with links to the original source when possible.

SJMA is committed to equitable access to the arts, and 50X50 furthers SJMA’s vision to become a borderless museum, offering anyone with an internet connection the chance to gain deeper understanding of iconic artists in our permanent collection. 

The Artists
Diana Al-Hadid, Benny Andrews, Robert Arneson, Ruth Asawa, Judy Baca, Firelei Báez, Rina Banerjee, Ruth Bernhard, Elmer Bischoff, Barbara Bloom, Joan Brown, Jim Campbell, Enrique Chagoya, Robert Colescott, Mary Corse, Roy De Forest, Jay DeFeo, Llyn Foulkes, Gauri Gill, Andy Goldsworthy, Doug Hall, Mona Hatoum, Tim Hawkinson, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Mildred Howard, Jitish Kallat, Dinh Q. Lê, David Levinthal, Hung Liu, Frank Lobdell, Richard Misrach, Lee Mullican, Louise Nevelson, Manuel Ocampo, Nathan Oliveira, Tony Oursler, Alan Rath, Alison Saar, Raymond Saunders, Jennifer Steinkamp, Hito Steyerl, Stephanie Syjuco, Tabaimo, Masami Teraoka, Diana Thater, Leo Villareal, Bill Viola, Catherine Wagner, William T. Wiley, and Betty Woodman.

This publication is made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS grant #MA-10-16-0002-16).

Sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Lipman Family Foundation, the Richard A. Karp Charitable Foundation, Cheryl and Bruce Kiddoo, Yvonne and Mike Nevens, Peggy and Yogen Dalal, Evelyn and Rick Neely, Rita and Kent Norton, Elizabeth and Byron Ryono, Marge and Ken Nissly, Elaine Cardinale, George Crow in honor of Susan Crow, Toby and Barry Fernald, Tad Freese and Brook Hartzell, Elena Lebedeva and Alvin Smith, Marsha and Jon Witkin, and the SJMA Docent Council Alumni.

Programs at the San José Museum of Art are made possible by generous support from the Museum's Board of Trustees, a Cultural Affairs Grant from the City of San José, the Lipman Family Foundation, Yvonne and Mike Nevens, Facebook Art Department, the Richard A. Karp Charitable Foundation, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Adobe, Yellow Chair Foundation, the SJMA Director's Council and Council of 100, the San José Museum of Art Endowment Fund established by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation at the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, and The William Randolph Hearst Foundation.

SJMA is located at 110 South Market St in downtown San José, CA. The Museum is temporarily closed, per Santa Clara County orders to Shelter in Place due to Covid-19. SJMA continues to offer programming online and has expanded digital content, at: sjmusart.org/museum-from-home. Museum From Home features behind-the-scene explorations of exhibitions, art-making videos, educator lesson plans, a Curators’ Dashboard, and more. For up-to-date information about when SJMA will reopen, visit SanJoseMuseumofArt.org

Press contacts
Holly Shen, deputy director, hshen [​at​] sjmusart.org or T 917.364.1073
Melanie Samay, marketing + communications director, msamay [​at​] sjmusart.org or T 415.722.0555

Images available

San Jose Museum of Art
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