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NOVEMBER 22 Albers Foundation invites applications for its 2017 artists-in-residence program

NOVEMBER 2 The Museum of Modern Art publishes "One and One Is Four: The Bauhaus Photocollages of Josef Albers"

JULY 21 Thread is awarded the 2016 Plan Award for culture

MAY 20 David Zwirner Gallery appointed worldwide representative for the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation

MAY 17 Albers Foundation launches online bookstore

MAY 9 Thread is shortlisted for the 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture

MARCH 31 Albers in Art in Embassies program


FEBRUARY 19 Educational workshops for schoolchildren in conjunction with the exhibition "A Beautiful Confluence"

FEBRUARY 5 Emiko Nakano's Japanese translation of Virginia Gardner Troy's book "Anni Albers and Ancient American Textiles: From Bauhaus to Black Mountain" is now available

JANUARY 16 Interaction of Color workshop at the Exploratorium, San Francisco

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One of the two residential studios at the Albers Foundation

Albers Foundation invites applications for its 2017 artists-in-residence program

The Albers Foundation maintains two residential studios for visiting artists on its seventy-acre campus in Bethany, Connecticut. Residencies are designed to provide time, space, and solitude, with the benefit of access to the Foundation's archives and library. Artists working in any discipline are welcome to apply. No aesthetic connection to the Alberses' art is necessary, though applicants should exemplify the seriousness of purpose that characterized both Anni and Josef. Residencies are typically two months long and take place throughout the year.

Residencies are awarded by invitation and by application and we try our best to accommodate the scheduling preferences of accepted artists. There is one application cycle per year, ending on January 1. For more information and to apply, please visit https://albersfoundation.submittable.com/submit.

One and One Is Four: The Bauhaus Photocollages of Josef Albers (The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2016)

The Museum of Modern Art publishes "One and One Is Four: The Bauhaus Photocollages of Josef Albers"

One and One Is Four: The Bauhaus Photocollages of Josef Albers, published by the Museum of Modern Art, New York, is the first book to reproduce all seventy photocollages created by Josef Albers at the Bauhaus using photographs he made between 1928 and 1932. Hailed in his own lifetime as among the most important figures of twentieth-century art, both as a practitioner and as a teacher at the Bauhaus, Black Mountain College, and Yale University, Albers achieved widespread acclaim across a range of mediums, from glassworks and furniture design to printmaking and painting. Yet Albers's engagement with modernist photography has remained largely unknown. At once expansive and restrained, this remarkable body of work anticipates concerns that Albers would pursue throughout his career: seriality, perception, and the relationship between handcraft and mechanical production. The publication celebrates MoMA's recent acquisition of ten of Albers's photocollages, which are on view in a related exhibition at the museum from November 23, 2016, through April 2, 2017.

Sinthian kids at Thread, Senegal, 2016

Thread is awarded the 2016 Plan Award for culture

Thread, the artists' residency and cultural center established by the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation and Le Korsa in Sinthian, Senegal, has won the 2016 Plan Award in the category of Culture. The award, which is offered annually by The Plan, an internationally recognized architecture magazine, is designed "to disseminate knowledge of and improve the quality of the work done by designers, academics, critics, and students in the architecture, design, and city planning fields, thereby promoting debate on topical design and planning themes."

Congratulations to Toshiko Mori and Jordan MacTavish of Toshiko Mori Architect, who designed the building. Congratulations, also, to Nick Murphy and Moussa Sene, Thread's directors, as well as to the residents of Sinthian and the visiting artists who enliven the space with their collaborations, demonstrating the power of intercultural connection. For more information, please visit Thread's website at thread-senegal.org

Josef and Anni Albers at Black Mountain College, 1949. Photo: Theodore Dreier

David Zwirner Gallery appointed worldwide representative for the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation

We are delighted to announce that David Zwirner Gallery has been selected as the worldwide representative for works of art that the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation chooses to sell by its founders, the textile artist and abstract painter and printmaker Anni Albers, and the color theorist, painter, and printmaker Josef Albers.

The Alberses met at the renowned Bauhaus School in Weimar, Germany, in 1922. They were married in Berlin in 1925, and emigrated to the United States in 1933, following the refusal of the Bauhaus faculty to work in collaboration with the Third Reich, to teach at the newly formed, progressive Black Mountain College. The Alberses had been married for fifty years when Josef died at age eighty-eight in 1976. Anni Albers died at age ninety-four in 1994. Anni was the first textile artist ever to have a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, in 1949. Josef was the first living artist ever to have a solo retrospective at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in 1971.

Zwirner replaces the dealer Leslie Waddington, who had this role on the Foundation's behalf until his death last November. Nicholas Fox Weber, the Foundation's Executive Director, was approached by many of the leading international galleries specializing in contemporary work who sought to sell the Alberses' work on behalf of the Foundation. Of these, he made a short list of the four galleries he considered the most qualified, and treated the search "in the manner of an architectural competition rather than the usual secretive, behind-closed-door approach more common in the art world and guaranteed to generate rumors." He wrote the four chief executives of the galleries on the short list an open letter, their names all given, posing the same questions and stating the same hopes and policies to the contenders in order to make the choice that would best serve the nonprofit Albers Foundation.

For purposes of the announcement of his final decision, Mr. Weber issued the following statement: "I considered my recent search for the ideal art gallery to represent the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation worldwide to be one of the most significant, possibly daunting, tasks of my forty years at the helm of this wonderful organization. But what I thought would be difficult has proved to be a source of enormous pleasure. In David Zwirner, David Leiber, and others on the team of this wonderful art gallery, I have found people with the integrity, energy, passion for art, and human values that were dear to Josef and Anni alike. The Alberses established, as the goal of our Foundation, "the revelation and evocation of vision through art." With our desire to perpetuate those intentions in places ranging from some of the poorest villages in rural Africa to the most sophisticated museums in great metropolises, we believe that David Zwirner, the man and the gallery, embodies out interests with aplomb, professionalism, wisdom, and kindness." In November 2016, David Zwirner will present an exhibition of Josef Albers's work in its 537 West 20th Street location in New York.

The Albers Foundation serves multiple purposes, working on exhibitions worldwide, sponsoring publications that help fulfill the Alberses' goals, maintaining artists' residencies both on its Connecticut campus and near the Gambia River in West Africa, overseeing new editions of furniture and objects and textiles based on the Alberses' designs, working on collaborative enterprises like ballets by the choreographer Wayne McGregor based on the Alberses' art, and assisting with medical, educational, and cultural aid through Le Korsa, an international nonprofit it created to improve the lives of people in rural Senegal and in some of the poorest regions of the Senegalese cities of Tambacounda and Dakar.

Our online bookstore features rare and out-of-print titles and exhibition catalogues such as Search Versus Re-Search and On Weaving.

Albers Foundation launches online bookstore

Our online bookstore features rare and out-of-print titles and exhibition catalogues. We have sought-after classics by the artists themselves, including Search Versus Re-Search by Josef Albers and On Weaving by Anni Albers. Also available are groundbreaking exhibition catalogues such as Anni and Josef Albers: Latin American Journeys, one of the first books to explore the influence of the Alberses' many visits to Mexico and Latin America. The 2010 revised edition of The Prints of Josef Albers: A Catalogue Raisonné 1915–1976 is a handsome counterpart to The Prints of Anni Albers: A Catalogue Raisonné, 1963–1984, from 2009. Together, the two books show the artists' full range of printmaking and their precision and experimentation with a versatile medium. Recent catalogues include the lavishly illustrated A Beautiful Confluence: Anni and Josef Albers and the Latin American World and Josef Albers: Sublime Optics, among many others. All purchases support the educational initiatives of the Albers Foundation; for more information, please visit albersdesignshop.bigcartel.com.

Thread is shortlisted for the 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture
Thread's open brickwork provides ventilation while preventing rain and dust from entering the building.
The roof of Thread funnels rainwater to two basins where it can later be used, an important feature in Sinthian's arid climate.

Thread is shortlisted for the 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture

The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation is pleased to announce that Thread, the artists' residency and cultural center developed by the Foundation in Sinthian, Senegal, has been shortlisted for the Aga Khan Award for Architecture. Congratulations are due to Toshiko Mori and Jordan MacTavish of Toshiko Mori Architect, who designed Thread, as well as to all of the center's staff, and to the residents of Sinthian, who truly make the building a vibrant place.

The award is unique among prizes because it selects projects that improve the overall quality of life for the surrounding community in addition to exhibiting architectural excellence.

Thread and the other nominees are undergoing on-site review by specialists, who include architects, engineers, and conservators, and will be subject to a final review by a jury. The eventual winner will receive $1 million in prize money. For further information, please visit Thread's website (thread-senegal.org) and the 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture website (http://www.akdn.org/2016Award).

Two of Josef Albers’s Homage to the Square paintings overlook the stair hall at the Ambassador’s Residence in Madrid. Photo: François Halard for Architectural Digest (September 2015)

Albers in Art in Embassies program


There are as many ways for art to be political as there are for politicians to be artful, but one of the simplest is to participate in the United States' Art in Embassies (AIE) program. First envisioned by the Museum of Modern Art in 1953, AIE was formalized ten years later by President John F. Kennedy to encourage cross-cultural dialogue and exchange by exhibiting significant works of art in U.S. embassies and consulates throughout the world.


The Albers Foundation has long supported AIE, lending multiple works by both Josef and Anni to the program. It is fitting that their art has been displayed in U.S. embassies. The Alberses emigrated to the United States from their native Germany in 1933, when the Nazi regime closed the Bauhaus. It was in the U.S. where the Alberses found the freedom to continue to live and work as they wished—as artists and teachers who believed in the value of art to promote critical and creative thinking.

Works by the Alberses have been on view in U.S. embassies in Vienna, Tokyo, Brasília, and Beijing, among others. Currently, two Homage to the Square paintings are prominently featured at the Ambassador's Residence in Madrid, and one in Paris. While the Ambassador's Residences aren't open to the public, Albers enthusiasts in those cities can avail themselves of the Homage to the Square exhibition at Galería Cayón, Madrid, through April 23, or catch an original Josef Albers photograph in the La Boîte de Pandore exhibit organized by the artist Jan Dibbets at the Musée d'art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, which opened on March 25.

Atlante educator Elisa Nocentini discusses the use of line in Anni Albers's work with a group of schoolchildren at A Beautiful Confluence, Museo delle Culture, Milan, February 2016
Students made “textile drawings” in which they explored the interaction of materials such as jute, wool, and thread.

Educational workshops for schoolchildren in conjunction with the exhibition "A Beautiful Confluence"

Material, that is to say unformed or unshaped matter, is the field where authority blocks independent experimentation less than in many other fields, and for this reason it seems well fitted to become the training ground for invention and free speculation.

—Anni Albers, "Work With Material," 1937

Schoolchildren in Milan lived these words of Anni Albers recently. As part of guided visits to A Beautiful Confluence: Josef and Anni Albers and the Latin American World at Mudec, Museo delle Culture, the students engaged in a series of art-making workshops that explored the qualities of certain materials: paper, jute, and wool, in particular. The workshops were inspired by A Beautiful Confluence, which examines the influence of ancient Latin American art and architecture on the work of Josef and Anni Albers.

"An important thing was to underline the meeting between different cultures united by the same aesthetic vision," said Samuele Boncampagni, a member of Atlante Collective, an Italian cultural organization which designed the workshops.

Led by Elisa Nocentini, an Atlante educator, students compared the uses of line in the Alberses' work and in the Latin American artifacts and weavings which the couple had collected, and which were also on display. They then made a collaborative line drawing, based on those works, with a partner. After looking closely at Anni Albers's weaving Epitaph, the students made "textile drawings" in which they explored the interaction of materials with very different qualities: squares of jute and wool thread. Although the children worked on a small scale, they quickly learned that imagination is the only relevant measurement of a "training ground for invention."

On the left is Emiko Nakano's Japanese translation of Anni Albers and Ancient American Textiles: From Bauhaus to Black Mountain, with the original 2002 book by Virginia Gardner Troy on the right.

Emiko Nakano's Japanese translation of Virginia Gardner Troy's book "Anni Albers and Ancient American Textiles: From Bauhaus to Black Mountain" is now available

Emiko Nakano, a former professor of textile design at Tokyo Zokei University, has translated Virginia Gardner Troy's 2002 book Anni Albers and Ancient American Textiles: From Bauhaus to Black Mountain into Japanese. The book is one of the most comprehensive studies of Albers's weavings and traces the artist's interest in Andean textiles, which she considered "the most outstanding examples of textile art [from which] we can learn most." From Troy's book: "Using Andean textiles as her guides, Albers developed an innovative approach to the teaching, practice, and understanding of weaving in the twentieth century, paving the way for the medium of fiber to be included in the fine arts mainstream." This admiration for and connection to the art of the ancient past was rooted in Albers's desire to find design solutions for the modern age. Troy's book reveals how Albers's weavings, teaching, and life connected the past to the present. Thanks to Nakano's translation, the link between Ancient American weavings, the Bauhaus, and Black Mountain College now extends to Japan. Art critic Hiroshi Ogawa says the book "will fill in what's missing in the field of modern art history in Japan."

The Albers Foundation led an Interaction of Color workshop at San Francisco's Exploratorium on January 16, 2016. The beginning exercise was to make 3 colors appear to be 4. From there, everyone dove in, compared colors, consulted with neighbors, tried, tested, experimented. More than 100 participants joined in for a morning of color experiments inspired by Josef Albers.
The Interaction of Color workshop at the Exploratorium, San Francisco, was an inspired and energetic exploration of careful looking and playful making, from which everyone left with a sharper eye and a work of art. (January 2016)

Interaction of Color workshop at the Exploratorium, San Francisco

In January 2016, a team from the Albers Foundation traveled to San Francisco's Exploratorium to participate in Begin here: Assignments, instructions, prompts, and cues from the artist's classroom, a program organized by Marina McDougall of the Exploratorium and Sarah Ganz-Blythe of the RISD Museum. Sponsored by the Exploratorium's Center for Art and Inquiry, the weekend included presentations from the museum's art and scientific research staff and from Stephen Thomas, director of the experimental Oxbow School in Napa, California, as well as workshops with dancers from Company Wayne McGregor and by the Albers Foundation. The objective of the Begin Here project is to use artists' studio practices and teaching methods as models or inspiration for new kinds of public education programs and hands-on exhibits.

As part of the weekend program, Albers Foundation educators Fritz Horstman, Jeannette Redensek, and Michael Beggs led a two-hour Interaction of Color workshop for the museum's general public. The beginning exercise was to make 3 colors appear to be 4. From there, everyone dove in, compared colors, consulted with neighbors, tried, tested, experimented. It was an inspired and energetic exploration of careful looking and playful making, from which everyone left with a sharper eye and a work of art. More than 100 participants joined in for a morning of color experiments inspired by Josef Albers's Interaction of Color.