Now You See Me . . .

Reflections on Portraits and Abstractions from the Collection

May 24, 2018 - March 23, 2019

If one looks closely and listens carefully, works of art can ask important questions that elicit understanding of our world. For example, what societal factors influence how an artist depicts another person? What role does photography play in transforming individuals into icons? Or, what does it mean when people talk about being a “real” man? Sometimes, artworks ask the viewer self-referential questions. For example, can a “painting” be made on a computer? When you remove craftsmanship, in what other ways can we determine if a work of art is “good”? This year’s permanent collection exhibition looks at portraits and abstractions – their “human-ness” or mechanical nature – and more importantly, the spectrum of questions that one can derive from the work. What questions or responses do you have? We invite you to join the conversation through this exhibition curated by Plains Art Museum Director Andrew Maus and Associate Curator Tasha Kubesh, with assistance from the Museum’s Curatorial Team members and installation staff.   

Plains Art Museum is home to over 4,000 diverse national, regional, and local works of art. Since the Museum’s incorporation in 1975, it has focused primarily on collecting American modern and contemporary art in a variety of styles with special emphasis in regional artwork, Native American work, and Modern Masters. This current exhibition also acknowledges donations to the collection from private collectors and businesses that are making Fargo-Moorhead the cultural center of the Upper Midwest.

  • Martin Wanserski, First Born, 1981, Mixed media, 13 x 3 x 7 in. Museum Purchase: 23th Midwestern Invitational Exhibition Purchase
  • Andy Warhol, Jacqueline Kennedy II, 1965, Screenprint, Gift Donald D. Powell, © 2018 Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
  • Fritz Scholder, Kiva Rest, 1977, Oil on canvas, Museum purchase

Other Exhibitions

RedBall Project

October 4, 2018 - October 10, 2018

North Carolina-based artist Kurt Perschke’s acclaimed work, the RedBall Project, is a 15 foot sculptural installation traveling around the world, adopting cities as its canvas. Through a simple act of imagination, Perschke squeezes and places the RedBall in imaginative locations to draw attention to our built environment and history, and disrupt our daily routines.

View Exhibition

FMVA Studio Crawl Preview

August 30, 2018 - October 27, 2018

Each year, Fargo Moorhead Visual Artists (FMVA) presents the Studio Crawl, a popular, free event that gives the community access to professional artists’ studios. The Studio Crawl is an opportunity for people to meet artists, see demonstrations, and purchase their work.

View Exhibition

Cone Pack Invitational

September 6, 2018 - January 12, 2019
A Place at the Table

Cone Pack is a contemporary clay community from the Fargo-Moorhead area. The collective includes some of the area’s most talented and active ceramic artists.

View Exhibition

On Place: Three Views of the Land

September 13, 2018 - January 17, 2019
by Wayne Gudmundson, Drake Hokanson, Stuart Klipper

On Place exhibits the work of three of the Midwest’s most experienced photographers culminating in 45 images from their excursions along the region’s back roads, broad landscape, rivers, and small towns.

View Exhibition

Mike Marth

June 21, 2018 - October 7, 2018
This is Not a Still Life

This is Not a Still Life explores the multiple dimensions of Moorhead (MN)-based artist Mike Marth’s artwork and its remarkable evolution. Exhibiting a mastery of materials, Marth’s work is often formal in nature, emphasizing its inherent qualities of form, style, symbolism, and texture.

View Exhibition