The Museum of Modern Art received a gift of 800 artists’ blueprints.
Robert Rauschenberg, White Paintings- 1951, 1965, ink, lined paper, and staples on cardboard; and ink on paper. Gift of the Gilbert B. and Lila Silverman Instruction Drawing Collection, Detroit. © 2019 Robert Rauschenberg Foundation.
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) has received a gift of 800 works by 300 different artists from the Gilbert B. and Lila Silverman Instruction Drawing Collection. Of the artists represented in the gift, 113 were not previously in MoMA’s collection. The donation includes works by John Cage, Christo, Mike Kelley, Merce Cunningham, Hanne Darboven, Walter de Maria, Yoko Ono, Adrian Piper, RAMMELZEE, and Robert Rauschenberg, among others.
The Instruction Drawing Collection is named as such because many of the drawings are blueprints and proposals for artworks and installations, a great deal of which were ephemeral in nature and so these drawings constitute some of their only documentation. The majority of the drawings date from the 1960s to the ‘80s, a critical period in the development of conceptual art.
In a statement, Christophe Cherix, MoMA’s chief curator of drawings and prints, said:
This collection raises fascinating questions for audiences and scholars alike, regarding issues such as the primacy of idea over process in art making, the legacy of ultimately unrealized or inherently ephemeral artworks, and the role of drawing today as paper becomes an increasingly uncommon repository for artists’ thoughts. This singular group of works offers a unique journey into the minds of some of our greatest artists.
Gilbert B. and Lila Silverman had previously made two other major donations to MoMA: their substantial collection of Fluxus artifacts and ephemera a decade ago, and the archives of Avalanche magazine in 2005.
Donald Judd, Instruction Drawing for Otterlo Show Wall Sculpture, 1976, pencil on paper. Gift of the Gilbert B. and Lila Silverman Instruction Drawing Collection, Detroit. © 2019 Judd Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.