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Contemporary Collecting: The Judith Neisser Collection

February 13, 2011–May 22, 2011
Galleries 182–184

For more than 30 years, Judith Neisser has been attentively attuned to the visual aspects of her surroundings, first as a writer and critic of architecture and interior design and, more recently, as a distinguished collector of international contemporary art. The Neisser Collection—equally rigorous in visual and conceptual coherence—features an extraordinary selection of paintings, sculpture, and works on paper created from the 1960s to the present and is the subject of this upcoming exhibition and accompanying publication, the second in the series Contemporary Collecting.

Remarkable in its quality and focus, the Judith Neisser Collection gives special emphasis to a core group of artists emerging from Minimal and Conceptual art of the 1960s, most notably Sol LeWitt, Robert Ryman, Donald Judd, Brice Marden, Dan Flavin, and Blinky Palermo. Other artists from distinct but related traditions—such as Lucio Fontana, Eva Hesse, Cy Twombly, Agnes Martin, Ellsworth Kelly, Sherrie Levine, and Roni Horn, for example—have been wonderfully integrated into the collection based on shared uses of seriality, the monochrome, reductive geometric forms, and the grid. Many of the objects featured in the exhibition have been gifted or designated as promised gifts to the Art Institute of Chicago.


A 160-page full-color catalogue accompanies the exhibition and serves as the first detailed look at nearly 100 works from the collection. The publication includes a foreward by Art Institute director James Cuno; an essay by independent art historian Annie Rorimer; and an interview with Judith Neisser by James Rondeau, exhibition curator and Frances and Thomas Dittmer Curator and Chair of Contemporary Art.

Blinky Palermo. Untitled, 1972. Promised gift of Judith Neisser. © Blinky Palermo.