Chattanooga, TN (April 19, 2016) – As part of our ongoing ArtWise Distinguished Speakers Series, the Hunter Museum of American Art welcomes Sanford Hirsch, Executive Director of the Adolph & Esther Gottlieb Foundation in New York, to speak on Thursday, May 5 at 6pm about the current special exhibit of paintings and monotypes by Abstract Expressionist Adolph Gottlieb.

Gottlieb famously said, “The role of the artist is that of image-maker. Different times require different images.” For Gottlieb, abstraction was a way to address viewers on an emotional and spiritual level. Along with close friend Mark Rothko, Gottlieb outlined the ideas of the Abstract Expressionists in a joint letter to The New York Times in 1943. The letter stated, in part, “We favor the simple expression of the complex thought…We are for flat forms because they destroy illusions and reveal truth.” Hirsch’s talk will explore these ideas and how they informed the work of Gottlieb and his cohorts.

Sanford Hirsch has developed policy and programs for the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation since its inception in 1976.  In his capacity as the foundation’s director, Hirsch has originated several major exhibitions, published numerous articles about Gottlieb and American art, and has lectured on related topics in the U.S. and abroad. Hirsch organized the Hunter Museum’s current special exhibition “A Painter’s Hand: The Works of Adolph Gottlieb” in cooperation with Hunter Museum staff. This exhibition will subsequently travel to several other museums in the U.S.

As part of Throwback Thursday, this presentation, as well as access to the two current special exhibitions, is offered to the public for the throwback price of $5 for adults (free for members and children under 17 with paying adult).

ArtWise events occur multiple times a year at the Hunter Museum, often coinciding with special exhibitions, and feature nationally and globally known speakers from the art community. Past speakers include Lalla Essaydi, Lynsey Addario, and Albert Paley. The ArtWise series is generously sponsored by the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee Community Trust. Media support provided is by Brewer Media.