Dayton Art Institute Announces 2020 Exhibitions
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Dayton Art Institute Announces 2020 Exhibitions

Dayton Art Institute Announces 2020 Exhibitions

Dayton Art Institute exhibitions in 2020 includes Japanese woodblock prints, art of the American West and a unique take on some of the biggest names in 20th century modern art.

Dayton Art Institute Announces 2020 Exhibitions


As The Dayton Art Institute  (DAI) prepares to welcome in the 2020 season, the museum has announced a suite of exhibitions for the new year.

The 2020 season will feature three Special Exhibitions, as well as several Focus Exhibitions that highlight specific artists, works or themes.

The special exhibition season begins with Samurai, Ghosts and Lovers: Yoshitoshi’s Complete 100 Aspects of the Moon, on view February 22–May 3, 2020, and continues with New Beginnings: An American Story of Romantics and Modernists in the West, May 30–September 12, 2020 and Picasso to Hockney: Modern Art on Stage, October 17, 2020–January 17, 2021.

“We are excited with our lineup of exhibitions for the coming season,” states Dr. Jerry N. Smith, DAI Chief Curator. “We close our 2019-2020 Centennial celebration with the opening of an exhibition organized by the DAI around our recent acquisition of a rare, complete set of Yoshitoshi’s 100 Aspects of the Moon, one of the greatest achievements in Japanese woodblock printmaking. We follow this up with a look at the diverse and colorful art of the American Southwest, drawn from the Tia Collection, one of the most extensive private collections of art of the American West in the world. We close out the year with a look at what happened when major artists like Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Henri Matisse, David Hockney and many others designed sets and costumes for the stage. In short, it will be a bold and colorful year of major, internationally recognized art offerings in 2020 at the DAI.” 

Samurai, Ghosts and Lovers: Yoshitoshi’s Complete 100 Aspects of the Moon

February 22–May 3

The Dayton Art Institute will be the exclusive venue for this exhibition, organized by the DAI from a recent acquisition of a complete set of Tsukioka Yoshitoshi’s 100 Aspects of the Moon. The series is one of the outstanding achievements in the history of Japanese woodblock prints and is a tour-de-force, combining striking designs with dramatic stories from Japan’s past. The prints depict heroism and humor, love and loss, mystery and magic, with the linking motif of the presence of the moon. This exhibition will provide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see all 100 prints on view together, and it is a fitting conclusion to the museum’s centennial celebrations.

New Beginnings: An American Story of Romantics and Modernists in the West

May 30–September 13

This major traveling exhibition is drawn from the internationally admired Tia Collection. New Beginnings: An American Story of Romantics and Modernists in the West offers the dynamic story of art of New Mexico in the early 20th century through bold colors and dramatic compositions. This exhibition features more than 110 works by 72 artists, including painting, sculptures, photographs and prints. It highlights the evolution of art in the Southwest, from the late Romantics and Classicists to the advent of early Modernism.

Picasso to Hockney: Modern Art on Stage

October 17, 2020–January 17, 2021

Picasso to Hockney: Modern Art on Stage is a traveling exhibition drawn from the McNay Art Museum’s renowned Tobin Collection of Theatre Arts. It features more than 120 objects of set and costume designs and offers fresh insights into artists and movements, from Cubism and Constructivism to Surrealism and Pop Art. This exhibition contains works by some of the most celebrated artists of the 20th century, including Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Fernand Léger, Natalia Gontcharova, Joan Miró, Louise Nevelson, Robert Indiana, Jim Dine, David Hockney, and many others.

In addition to the slate of Special Exhibitions, the DAI will present a series of smaller Focus Exhibitions, highlighting a diverse range of art.

Focus Exhibitions planned for 2020 include The Roaring (and The Quiet) ‘20s, which draws from the DAI collection and looks at the dramatic decade of the 1920s. Bukang Y. Kim: Journey to the East is an immersive installation of recent scroll paintings by the Cincinnati-based Korean artist. Archiving Eden: Dornith Doherty Photographs features images by the internationally recognized photographer of seed banks and the global preservation efforts by agriculturalists who are working to assure stable food sources despite climate change and decreased agricultural diversity. Preserving the Pure Land: The Art of Japanese Painting Conservation, will feature the DAI’s recently conserved, 400-year-old painting Thirteen Buddhist Figures, which will be shown for the first time in more than 40 years. The Focus Exhibition season will close the year with The Art of Norman Rockwell (working title), a DAI exclusive exhibition with paintings and drawings by America’s most beloved artist and illustrator. Additional Focus Exhibitions will take a deep dive into the DAI’s extensive collection to feature highlights of photography and works on paper. Watch the DAI's website and social media for dates and more information.

“2020 will be a busy year for exhibitions at the DAI. We look forward to complementing our lineup of Special Exhibitions with a variety of Focus Exhibitions, which provide our guests multiple offerings during any visit,” added Smith. “These are visually and intellectually stimulating installations that might look at a single artist, like Norman Rockwell, or a theme, like the conservation of centuries-old scroll paintings. There will be plenty to see and enjoy throughout the year.”

“Our curatorial team has put together an outstanding selection of diverse exhibitions to kick off our second century,” said DAI Director & CEO Michael R. Roediger. “It’s the perfect time to become a member and enjoy a full year’s worth of amazing art experiences at your Dayton Art Institute.”

The DAI’s centennial exhibition season is currently concluding with the Special Exhibition Maker & Muse: Women and Early 20th-Century Art Jewelry, on view through January 19, as well as the Focus Exhibitions William Preston Mayfield Photographs, on view through January 5, Mona Lisa Today, on view through January 12, and Art of Ernest Blumenschein, on view through February 23.

For more about exhibitions at the Dayton Art Institute, visit

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