Past Exhibitions

Natural History

July 28, 2012 – October 14, 2012



Natural History brings together a wide range of contemporary art from the museum’s permanent collection to explore artists’ engagement with nature, landscape, and the built environment. 

Including painting, sculpture, photography, and video works,Natural History offers a non-traditional and playful presentation of relevant themes running through contemporary art and directly engages with our neighbor, Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

Collectively, the artists in the exhibition explore the ways in which humans understand and visualize our natural environment; the social and cultural meanings embedded in the tradition of landscape photography and painting; the use of natural motifs for formal experimentation; environmentalism; and the legacy of Romanticism, as it pertains to nature and the sublime. Artists include  John Divola, Mel Bochner,  Laura Owens, Fischli & Weiss, Ed Ruscha, Paul Thek, James Welling, Carsten Höller, Richard Hughes, Florian Maier-Aichen, Valeska Soares, Vija Celmins, Llyn Foulkes, and Rachel Harrison.

Natural History is the 69th installment of Carnegie Museum of Art’s Forum series. The exhibition is organized by Dan Byers, associate curator of contemporary art.

Support for this exhibition was provided by The Fellows of Carnegie Museum of Art. General operating support for Carnegie Museum of Art is provided by The Heinz Endowments and Allegheny Regional Asset District. Carnegie Museum of Art receives state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Installation Views

naturalhistory107x107.jpgMel Bochner's Measurement: Plant (Palm) by the gallery entrance