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The summer of 2022 exhibition was the first solo show in Houston for Baseera Khan, a  Texas-born, New York-based multidisciplinary artist. Their show Baseera Khan: Weight on History featured new and recent work, including a monumental architectural sculpture commissioned by the Moody, that offered a means to critique existing power structures and envision alternative futures. The season was also host to a number of events including the Pride Happy Hour, Summer Jam, Rice Public Art Sip + Stroll, and our closing reception with DJ Hiram. Over the summer the Moody team helped install a number of new works to the Rice Public Art collection, notably, Odili Donald Odita, Meeting Place / Painting with Changing Parts mural in Alice Pratt Brown Hall. 

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On July 9, 2022, the Moody welcomed visitors of all ages and families of all types to explore the building and see the artwork on view.  Younger guests were treated to face painting, art activities, and a scavenger hunt. An indoor local food market with tasty options from Lemond Kitchen, JQ’s Tex Mex BBQ, and Desi Fresh was also provided. The event was co-presented with The Informal Grub, creators of the Rice Village and Heights Farmers Markets. 

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Artist Raven Chacon led musicians with the Shepherd School of Music and Houston-based Nameless Sound in an outdoor performance of his graphic score American Ledger No. 1. Chacon is a Pulitzer Prize-winning Diné artist known as a composer of chamber music, as well as a solo performer of noise music. He was born in Fort Defiance, Navajo Nation, Arizona, United States.

Performing musicians include Sarah Ruth Alexander (voice, harmonium, aquaphone); Anthony Almendárez (trumpet, electronics); Tom Carter (electric guitar); Allison DeFrancesco (piccolo); David Dove (trombone); Sonia Flores (double bass, voice); Emmanuel Guajardo (electric bass); Jason Jackson (saxophone); Badie Khaleghian (electronics); Daniel Leibovic (voice); Nicholas Lindell (viola); Gabriel Martinez (percussion, ax, wood); Rebecca Novak (cornet); Ivette Roman-Roberto (voice); Annie Winkleman (oboe); Anders Zelinsky (drums, percussion); Sam Wu (conductor).  

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"Soundwaves: Experimental Strategies in Art + Music" was organized on the occasion of the 5th Anniversary of the Moody Center for the Arts and the 10th Anniversary of the James Turrell, "Twilight Epiphany" Skyspace at Rice University. Curated by Alison Weaver, the Suzanne Deal Booth Executive Director, the exhibition is made possible by the Moody Center for the Arts Founders Circle with additional support from the Elizabeth Lee Moody Excellence Fund for the Arts and the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Exhibiting artists included Nevin Aladag, Nick Cave, Raven Chacon, Charles Gaines, Jennie C. Jones, Idris Khan, Christine Sun Kim, Jason Moran, Sarah Morris, Trevor Paglen, Anri Sala, and Naama Tsabar. New work was created for the show by Jamal Cyrus, Spencer Finch, and Jorinde Voigt. A series of programs activated the space and artworks in the exhibition. Headlining programming partners included Raven Chacon, Jamal Cyrus, Jerry Hou, Lauren Jacobsen, Nameless Sound, and Anthony Pinn.

The Spring 2022 season also included the second Moody Wall Project installation featuring the work of Reginald Adams. You can learn more about this mural and the community engagement led by Adams on our website. His project was celebrated in conjunction with the Moody's 5th Birthday Bash with live music from The Selfless Lovers.

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Established as a University-wide arts initiative in 2008, the Rice Public Art collection underscores the unconventional approach and creative spirit of scholarly inquiry at Rice University. This world-class collection, which reaches across the entire Rice campus, includes an iconic James Turrell Skyspace, important sculptures by Michael Heizer, Shirazeh Houshiary, Beverly Pepper, Ursula Von Rydingsgard, and Mark di Suvero, a Sol Lewitt wall drawing, and two-dimensional works by Carmen Herrera, Dorothy Hood, Charles Gaines, and Leo Villareal, among many others. Access to the artwork is always free and available to students, visitors, and the general public.

The Moody Center for the Arts facilitates the acquisition, installation, maintenance, and awareness of the Rice Public Art collection. With campus partners, the Moody also identifies opportunities to engage the Rice and Houston communities through these amazing artworks. The summer music series and Skyspace dance performances, commissioned by the Moody, are examples of how these works can inspire artistic collaboration and student involvement.

These permanent works—and the Moody’s temporary public art programs Platform, Off the Wall, and collaboration at the BioScience Research Collaborative-- enliven the shared spaces on campus and signal to visitors that the arts are a critical part of a twenty-first century education.  

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This year the Moody Center for the Arts celebrates its fifth anniversary as Rice University’s leading laboratory for experimentation at the intersection of art and ideas. Since opening its doors in 2017, the Moody has become a dynamic site for new forms of collaboration and creativity. Moody's team and creative partners strive to foster dialogue about some of the most critical issues of our time through thought-provoking exhibitions, classes, workshops, public programs, and performances, as seen in this video that looks at the last five years. 

Over the past five years, the Moody has increased efforts to support local artists and to reach new audiences while partnering with a broad range of academic departments, making the University’s intellectual capital more widely available. Simultaneously, the Moody engages with an expansive group of off-campus collaborators who have brought original, often unexpected ideas to Rice.

As a hinge between the campus and the community, the Moody provides an open platform for original thought and an accessible site for engagement. Beginning with our decision to make all exhibitions and programs free and open to the public, we welcome all voices and invite participation from all sides.  Whether virtually or in person, connectivity and conversation through the arts feels more urgent now than ever.

Looking forward to the next five years, we embrace Rice University’s mission to cultivate diverse spaces for learning and discovery that contribute to the betterment of our world. Through the arts and the ideas the arts can inspire, the Moody's aim is to encourage both students and visitors to imagine new possibilities and work towards a better future.

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In the fall the Moody presented Kapwani Kiwanga: The Sand Recalls the Moon’s Shadow, the artist’s first solo exhibition in Houston, which consists of two new site-specific installations and a video work. Focusing on aspects of two nations’ economies—the instrumental role the cultivation of sisal played in Tanzania’s independence and the impact of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in Texas—the installations, Maya-Bantu and Dune, reflect on processes of extraction and the exploitation of natural resources. Alongside these monumental commissions, the video piece Vumbi underscores the importance of human care for the environment, while concurrently grappling with nature’s inexorable forces.

The Dimensions Variable series for the fall exhibition was initiated by the award-winning singer/songwriter, researcher, and educator Lisa E. Harris with Import, a commissioned performance that responded to Kiwanga's exhibition. This was followed by an original performance by Jasmine Hearn, Houston native and a three-time Bessie Award winner and 2019 Jerome Foundation Jerome Hill Fellow. Additionally, this fall, The Moody Center for the Arts launched a new collaborative project, Moody Project Wall, with the goal of fostering cross-campus student engagement with Houston-based artists. Centered on creating original artwork for a wall inside the Moody’s award-winning building, the first iteration of this project was ¡Displaced Mundo! The artist, Gerardo Rosales, worked closely with Rice students and community members to create a temporary large-scale wall painting. Aligning with his larger body of work, the inaugural artist used this opportunity to examine issues of class, race, gender, and sexuality through bold images infused with playfulness.

Kapwani Kiwanga: The Sand Recalls the Moon’s Shadow was curated by Ylinka Barotto, Associate Curator, Moody Center for the Arts. Video by Walley Films. 

Moody Project Wall: Gerardo Rosales, ¡Displaced Mundo! is made possible by the Rice University's Arts Initiative Fund and the Moody Center for the Arts Founders Circle with additional support provided by the Nyquist Family. It was curated by Frauke V. Josenhans, Curator at the Moody Center for the Arts and included Rice students  Emily DeAnn Peña ’25; Athenea Perez ’24; Alejandra Jimenez ’25; Javier Parada ’24; Jennifer Penaloza ’22; Laurel Chen ’22 and Sophia DeLeon-Wilson ’23. 

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In the summer of 2021, the Moody Center for the Arts presented Brie Ruais: Movement at the Edge of the Land, the first institutional solo exhibition of the Brooklyn-based sculptor Brie Ruais (b. 1982, Southern California). The exhibition featured a monumental installation of ceramic works, created specifically for the exhibition at the Moody, and displayed in dialogue with a series of new photographs and a video installation that document ephemeral interventions on the land. Arranged on both the floor and walls, the sculptures interacted with the galleries and the Rice campus, referencing the post-industrial transformation of the American West. A site-specific work in two parts engaged both the natural grounds outside the building, as well as the man-made container within.

Dimensions Variable was organized in conjunction with the Moody’s summer exhibition Brie Ruais: Movement at the Edge of the Land, visitors were invited to engage all their senses, and to connect with the large-scale ceramic pieces on view that emphasize our bodily connection with the natural environment. The event included a special ambulatory performance conceived in response to the exhibition by choreographer Oliver Halkowich, featuring Melody Mennite, principal dancer with Houston Ballet and Kelly Myernick Kubin, former Houston Ballet first soloist and current teacher with the Houston Ballet Academy, as well as Anthony Barilla, a musician, writer, and performance artist based in Houston. A hands-on workshop organized by ClayHouston gave visitors of all ages the opportunity to experiment with clay, free-style or with guidance.

This exhibition was curated by Frauke V. Josenhans, Associate Curator, Moody Center for the Arts. Video by Walley Films. Learn more at https://moody.rice.edu

The exhibition is made possible by the Thomas D. and Pamela Riley Smith Endowment for the Moody Center for the Arts. Major support is provided by the Louis Sudler Endowment and the Brad and Leslie Bucher Artist Endowment. Additional support is provided by the Tamara de Kuffner Fund, the Robert Lehman Foundation, the Kilgore Endowment Fund, the Sewall Endowment and albertz benda, New York.

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As part of Rice Public Art’s Platform series, inviting contemporary artists to respond to art, architecture, and research at Rice University through temporary, site-specific installations, the Dutch collective We Make Carpets will intervene in an open-air temporary structure adjacent to Baker Hall.

Based on the 19th century American tradition of a barn raising, a collective action in which the community comes together to build a barn for one of its members. The artists, from their studio in the Netherlands, provided a set of instructions for an installation to be realized by Houston-based volunteers. Given travel restrictions due to COVID-19, this innovative collaboration transcends international borders, bringing people together around a shared creative cause.

Marcia Nolte, Stijn van der Vleuten, and Bob Waardenburg, the artists of We Make Carpets, first exhibited in the U.S. in 2018 when invited by the Moody Center for the Arts to create a site-specific installation titled Crêpe Paper Carpet. According to the artists, “We are delighted to continue our collaboration with Rice University, and are inspired by the open-ended, collaborative nature of the Rice and Houston communities.”

This installation is made possible by the Creative Industries Fund, NL and the Moody Center for the Arts. Video by Walley Films.

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In the spring of 2021, the Moody Center for the Arts celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Rothko Chapel by presenting a unique group exhibition.

Artists and the Rothko Chapel: 50 Years of Inspiration highlighted the extraordinary impact the Rothko Chapel has had on both artists and the public since opening in 1971. Organized in two sections, the first part restaged the 1975 exhibition Marden, Novros, Rothko: Painting in the Age of Actuality organized at Rice University by Harris Rosenstein and supported by Dominique de Menil. This presentation was the first time the works by Brice Marden and David Novros were reunited since 1975, recreating the immersive experience that viewers had upon first seeing them installed at Rice. The second section looked to the future, highlighting works by contemporary artists of diverse ages, nationalities and backgrounds - Sam Gilliam, Sheila Hicks, Shirazeh Houshiary, and Byron Kim- as a means of exploring the wide-reaching influence of the non-denominational Chapel, and how its legacy has manifested through various media and aesthetics.

The Moody Center for the Arts organized a series of interdisciplinary programs around the exhibition, which took place in tandem with the Rothko Chapel’s 50th Anniversary celebrations in the spring of 2021.

This exhibition was curated by Frauke V. Josenhans, Associate Curator, Moody Center for the Arts.

The exhibition was made possible through the Moody Center for the Arts Founders Circle, the Texas Commission on the Arts and the Elizabeth Lee Moody Excellence Fund for the Arts with additional support from the John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation.

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On today’s Up To The Minute, , Dr. Frauke Josenhans, associate curator of Moody Center of the Arts at Rice University, reviews its current exhibitions. Interview begins at the 12:30 mark of the video.

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In the summer of 2021, the Moody Center for the Arts will present Brie Ruais: Movement at the Edge of the Land, the first institutional solo exhibition of the Brooklyn-based sculptor Brie Ruais (b. 1982, Southern California). The artist creates large-scale abstract ceramic pieces, which operate on the scale of an individual body yet dynamically engage the architectural or natural environment. Employing her own physical features and bodily force as an artistic tool, the sculptures are shaped by this burst of energy. The artist’s movement-based practice is legible through the scrapes, gouges, and gestures embedded in the surfaces and forms of the ceramic works.  Each sculpture is made with the equivalent of her body weight in clay, resulting in human-scale works that forge an intimacy with the viewer’s body. Through her collaborative engagement with raw materials like clay, dirt, and gravel, Ruais’s work generates a physical and sensorial experience that calls us to examine our relationship to the land.

The exhibition will feature a monumental installation of ceramic works, created specifically for the exhibition at the Moody, and displayed in dialogue with a series of new photographs and a video installation that document ephemeral interventions on the land. Arranged on both the floor and walls, the sculptures will interact with the galleries and the Rice campus, referencing the post-industrial transformation of the American West. A site-specific work in two parts will engage both the natural grounds outside the building, as well as the man-made container within.

This exhibition is curated by Frauke V. Josenhans, Associate Curator, Moody Center for the Arts

The exhibition is made possible by the Thomas D. and Pamela Riley Smith Endowment for the Moody Center for the Arts. Major support is provided by the Louis Sudler Endowment and the Brad and Leslie Bucher Artist Endowment. Additional support is provided by the Tamara de Kuffner Fund, the Robert Lehman Foundation, the Kilgore Endowment Fund, the Sewall Endowment and albertz benda, New York.

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Responding to the Moody's spring exhibition Artists and the Rothko Chapel: 50 Years of Inspiration, Shepherd School of Music composers and musicians performed five new works. Video credit: Rice University Public Affairs, Brandon Martin.

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Ink on polished and electroplated stainless steel elements, cable
Pae White has created a site-specific installation for the rotunda of McNair Hall, home of the Jones Graduate School of Business. Responding to the existing architecture, ambient light, and the relationship between the elements and the viewer, colorful disks suspended from the ceiling form a dynamic, ever-changing sphere. Echoing the international background and global outlook of the students, faculty, and staff of Rice University’s Jones School of
Business, the suspended sculpture invokes the broader world, ideas of the future, and the scale of thought that can inspire positive change.
According to the artist, “My hope is that the artwork will reference a globe in flux, a globe where nothing is solidified or congealed – a colorful, shifting sphere of excitement, intrigue and agility. Surprise blushes of color and unexpected pattern groupings that change depending upon one’s viewing position reference a world of rewarding mysteries and surprises; a world worth exploring.”
This commission is made possible by the Jones Graduate School of Business

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Join Frauke V. Josenhans, Associate Curator at the Moody Center for the Arts, for a tour of Artists and the Rothko Chapel: 50 Years of Inspiration. The exhibition celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Rothko Chapel by highlighting the extraordinary impact the Chapel has had on both artists and the public since opening in 1971. Organized in two sections, the first part restages the 1975 exhibition Marden, Novros, Rothko: Painting in the Age of Actuality. The second section looks to the future, highlighting works by Sam Gilliam, Sheila Hicks, Shirazeh Houshiary, and Byron Kim. T

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Hear from featured States of Mind artist Adriana Corral, whose work "Latitudes" (2019) is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights debossed and embossed in English, Spanish, German and Japanese. In addition, Ylinka Barotto, associate curator at the Moody, discusses the importance of Corral’s work and its relationship to the exhibition.

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Hear from featured States of Mind artist Camilo Godoy, whose work "Everybody knows they are guilty" (2013-) draws attention to the legacy of violence perpetrated by the government during his lifetime. Godoy discusses his work and the how the Moody's exhibition engages audiences with pressing issues of the time.

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Hear from States of Mind: Art and American Democracy featured artist Rodney McMillian as he talks about his work “Untitled (The Supreme Court Painting,” (2004-2006). McMillian shares the inspiration behind his work and the impact he believes States of Mind has on current political conversations.

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The Moody highlights its Fall 2020 season featuring States of Mind: Art and American Democracy. The exhibition reflects on some of the most pressing topics facing American democracy and is timed to coincide with the 2020 presidential election in order to encourage dialogue around current social and political issues.

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Responding to the Moody's fall exhibition States of Mind: Art and American Democracy, Shepherd School of Music students composed new works which were performed in the gallery. 

Featuring:
Joanna McDonald, composer
"A Glimpse" (2019)
Performer: Daniel Cho, violin

Jake Sandridge, composer
"Improvisation with radio feedback"

Auburn Lee, composer
"Untitled" (2018) for fixed media

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Take a 360° tour of the Moody's fall exhibition States of Mind: Art and American Democracy. Each artist in the exhibition offers a discrete and potent account of how political issues directly affect our daily lives. By illuminating challenging, often entrenched policies, theses artists seek to foster discourse and propose social change. Experience the full 360° tour.

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Hear from States of Mind: Art and American Democracy featured artist Aram Han Sifuentes as she talks about her work Official Unofficial Voting Station: Voting for All Who Legally Can’t for the 2020 Presidential Election, (2020), a site-specific commission for the Moody Center for the Arts.

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Hear from States of Mind: Art and American Democracy featured artist Sandy Rodriguez as she talks about her work “Mapa de Los Angeles: For Those Killed by Police in 2018” (2018). The exhibition, which reflects on some of the most pressing topics facing American democracy, is timed to coincide with the 2020 presidential election in order to encourage dialogue around current social and political issues.

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Take a tour of the Moody's Fall 2020 exhibition States of Mind: Art and American Democracy with Associate Curator Ylinka Barotto.

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The Moody highlights its Summer 2020 season featuring site-specific window installations by Ganzeer and Erin Curtis and responses to these works by performance poet The Outspoken Bean and Open Dance Project.

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The Moody Center for the Arts commissioned Open Dance Project to respond to the second iteration of the Summer Window Series, "Light Shift" by Erin Curtis. Accompanied by music by Kirk Suddreath, the company of twelve interacted with the window art while masked and physically distanced, upholding COVID-19 safety protocols.

 

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As part of the Moody's Summer Music Series, five composers from the Shepherd School of Music were commissioned to create original works responding to individual objects in Rice’s Public Art collection. Each composer wrote a short solo or duet to be performed in front of the artwork. The fourth composition in the series, “Iteration Etudes,” is inspired by Sol LeWitt's "Wall Drawing #1115," and is composed by Theo Chandler. It is performed by oboist Virginia McDowell.

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As part of the Moody's Summer Music Series, five composers from the Shepherd School of Music were commissioned to create original works responding to individual objects in Rice’s Public Art collection. Each composer wrote a short solo or duet to be performed in front of the artwork. The third composition in the series, “In Our Own Likeness,” is inspired by Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror" (2011) and is composed by Jake Sandridge. It is performed by cellist Bree Ahern and clarinetist Roy Park.

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As part of the Moody's Summer Music Series, five composers from the Shepherd School of Music were commissioned to create original works responding to individual objects in Rice’s Public Art collection. Each composer wrote a short solo or duet to be performed in front of the artwork. The second composition in the series is inspired by Mark di Suvero's Po-um (Lyric) (2003) and is composed by David Jones. It is performed by percussionist Aaron Smith.

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As part of the Moody's Summer Music Series, five composers from the Shepherd School of Music were commissioned to create original works responding to individual objects in Rice’s Public Art collection. Each composer wrote a short solo or duet to be performed in front of the artwork. The first composition, Of Wood, is inspired by Ursula von Rydingsvard's Malutka II (2018) and composed by Daniel Zlatkin. It is performed by cellist Russell Houston.

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Alison Weaver, Moody Center for the Arts Executive Director, Alison de Lima Greene, Isabel Brown Wilson Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston,  and Dena Woodall, Associate Curator of Prints and Drawings, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, discuss artist Ursula Von Rydingsvard, the film "URSULA VON RYDINSVARD: INTO HER OWN" (2019), and her work.  This discussion is moderated by Marian Luntz, Curator of Film & Video at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

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Pascale Marthine Tayou, whose work is featured in the Moody’s spring exhibition Radical Revisionists: Contemporary African Artists Confronting Past and Present, talks about the inspiration behind his three works Le Code Noir (2018), Jpegafrica/Africagift (2006), and Plastic Tree (2015).

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"Radical Revisionists" exhibition designer and Rice University Professor of Architecture Carlos Jiménez discusses his design process and the inspiration behind the gallery's color scheme.

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Consulting curator Rachel Kabukala discusses Radical Revisionists featured artist Njideka Akunyili Crosby's "In the Lavender Room" (2019), which is installed on the facade of the Moody building.

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The Moody highlights its Spring 2020 season featuring Radical Revisionists: Contemporary African Artists Confronting Past and Present. The exhibition presents works by artists from Africa and the Diaspora who problematize Eurocentric tropes of race, representation and prevailing colonial narratives. The season included a performance by artist Serge Attukwei Clottey and Black Bodies in White Spaces, an evening event choreographed by Harrison Guy.

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Featured in the Moody's spring exhibition Radical Revisionists: Contemporary African Artists Confronting Past and Present, artist Robin Rhode talks about the inspiration behind his work, “The Point of Vanishing” (2012-2013). 

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The Moody highlights its Fall 2019 season in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 space flight. Moon Shot presents works responding to the moon landing by a selection of innovative artists working from 1969 to the present. Artists featured include Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Laurie Anderson’s and Hsin-Chien Huang, as well as Siah Armajani, Matthew Day Jackson, Nancy Graves, Rachel Rose, Katy Schimert, and Michelle Stuart.

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The Moody highlights its Spring 2019 season focusing on ecology and the environment and featuring Natasha Bowdoin's Sideways to the Sun, Michele Blazy's We Were the Robots, and Justin Brice Guargilia's We are the Asteroid III with performances by Poncili Creacion and Machine Dazzle.

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The Moody highlights its Fall 2018 season featuring Matthew Ritchie's The Demon in the Diagram, and performances by Silkroad Ensemble and artist-in-residence Hope Mohr.

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The Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University commissioned Dutch collective We Make Carpets to create a site-specific installation for its Central Gallery. This exhibition is the first time that Marcia Nolte, Stijn van der Vleuten, and Bob Waardenburg, the artists of We Make Carpets, show their colorful and surprising work in the U.S.

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The Moody highlights its Spring 2018 season featuring Josiah McElheny's Island Universe, Leo Villareal's Particle Chamber, and Pile the Wood High!, organized by Rice Professor Lisa Lapinski.

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The Moody highlights its Fall 2017 season featuring Mickalene Thomas' Waiting on a Prime Time Star and performances by Hope Stone, Jarrod Beck and Da Camera.

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The Moody’s inaugural programming includes Olafur Eliasson’s Green Light Artistic Workshop, photographs by Thomas Struth, a large-scale installation by the Tokyo art collective teamLab, a video installation by Diana Thater, a new 3-D paintbrush developed by Google, the production of An Iliad—a reimagining of Homer’s classic for the modern world, and internationally acclaimed Beirut-born Palestinian artist Mona Hatoum as the first artist-in-residence.

 

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The Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University was designed by renowned Los Angeles-based architect Michael Maltzan. The architect’s striking contemporary design, with its bold geometric shapes and inviting transparency, will create a beacon on Rice’s campus while affirming the Moody’s mission to foster connections across disciplines.

Opening on February 24, 2017, the Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University is a state-of-the-art, 50,000-square-foot facility dedicated to cross-disciplinary collaboration between the arts, sciences and humanities. The building will serve as an experimental platform for creating and presenting works in all disciplines, a flexible teaching space to encourage new modes of learning, and a forum for creative partnerships with visiting national and international artists.