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Uncommon Accumulation: The Mark and Judy Bednar Collection of Chicago Imagism

March 14, 2020 – October 11, 2020

Roger Brown, Forest Fire, 1976. Oil on canvas, 52 x 72 in. Promised gift of Mark and Judy Bednar.
Roger Brown, Forest Fire, 1976. Oil on canvas, 52 x 72 in. Promised gift of Mark and Judy Bednar.
overview

To celebrate Mark and Judy Bednar’s transformative gift of Chicago Imagist art from their collection to the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, MMoCA will bring together the gift in the museum’s main galleries. Uncommon Accumulation will showcase works that have already been gifted to the museum alongside the promised gifts that have been collected by the Bednars over the past 45 years. This gift of nearly 100 works of art complements the museum’s existing collection of Chicago Imagism through its inclusion of artworks produced very early in the careers of several of the artists. Formative works by Roger BrownRobert LostutterGladys NilssonJim NuttEd PaschkeChristina RambergBarbara RossiKarl Wirsum, and Ray Yoshida from the 1960s and 70s—a period when some of the Imagists were still in graduate school at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC)—are part of this extraordinary gift. These new additions uphold MMoCA as having one of the largest, and now one of the most comprehensive, collections of Chicago Imagism.

The Chicago Imagists were a group of figurative artists who emerged in Chicago in the mid-1960s. Using vibrant color and bold lines, they depicted the human body as grossly distorted and highly stylized. As students of SAIC, the Imagists passed by iconic paintings and the extraordinary collection of Surrealism on display at the Art Institute on their way to classes. Although influenced by the encyclopedic collection of the museum, the Imagists were equally inspired by ethnographic collections at the Field Museum, self-taught artists, comic books, storefront window displays, and advertisements in magazines.

The Bednars’ gift also reveals the profound friendships the couple has developed with the artists over the years. From dinners at their home to trips to the Metropolitan Opera, the support and admiration bestowed upon the artists is heartwarming and reciprocated. These sincere friendships are revealed in some of the inscriptions on the works of art—below one drawing reads “Happy Birthday Judy / From Your Friend / Robert Lostutter.”

To support continued research and the accessibility of these works, the Bednars have also funded the museum’s collection database and website redesign. While strengthening the museum’s existing collection of Chicago Imagism, these generous gifts also support the museum’s core mission of increasing education and inspiration through the arts.

Jim Nutt, Fret, 1990. Acrylic on linen in artist's frame, 26 x 26 in. Collection of Mark and Judy Bednar.
Jim Nutt, Fret, 1990. Acrylic on linen in artist’s frame, 26 x 26 in. Collection of Mark and Judy Bednar.
Exhibition Support

Uncommon Accumulation has been made possible by the Gabriele Haberland Permanent Collection Fund; a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts; and MMoCA Volunteers.

Exhibition Catalogue

The catalogue for this exhibition is available for purchase on Amazon.

Artwork

Chair de Triomphe. Artist: Roger Brown. Date: 1977. Medium: oil on wood chair.

Chair de Triomphe

1977

Roger Brown

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Chair de Triomphe. Artist: Roger Brown. Date: 1977. Medium: oil on metal iron.

Chair de Triomphe

1977

Roger Brown

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Forest Fire. Artist: Roger Brown. Date: 1976. Medium: oil on canvas.

Forest Fire

1976

Roger Brown

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Topsy-Turvy by Reflection. Artist: Roger Brown. Date: 1973. Medium: oil on canvas.

Topsy-Turvy by Reflection

1973

Roger Brown

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City Nights: All You-Wanted-To-Know-or-Don’t-Want-to-Know-And-Were-Afraid-To-Ask-A-Closet-Painting (subtitle supplied by Barbara Bowman). Artist: Roger Brown. Date: 1978. Medium: oil on canvas.

City Nights: All You-Wanted-To-Know-or-Don’t-Want-to-Know-And-Were-Afraid-To-Ask-A-Closet-Painting (subtitle supplied by Barbara Bowman)

1978

Roger Brown

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First Drawing for Spangled Coquette. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1995. Medium: graphite on paper.

First Drawing for Spangled Coquette

1995

Robert Lostutter

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Untitled #27. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1994. Medium: watercolor and graphite on paper.

Untitled #27

1994

Robert Lostutter

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Four preparatory drawings and six palettes (Studies for Rainforest). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: c. 1991. Medium: watercolor and graphite on paper.

Four preparatory drawings and six palettes (Studies for Rainforest)

c. 1991

Robert Lostutter

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Untitled (Study for Rainforest). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1991. Medium: graphite on paper.

Untitled (Study for Rainforest)

1991

Robert Lostutter

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Untitled (Study for Rainforest). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1991. Medium: watercolor pencil on paper.

Untitled (Study for Rainforest)

1991

Robert Lostutter

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Toucan (preparatory drawing and tracing). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: c. 1975. Medium: watercolor and graphite on paper.

Toucan (preparatory drawing and tracing)

c. 1975

Robert Lostutter

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Toucan. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1976. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Toucan

1976

Robert Lostutter

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Chelmon Rostratus. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1975. Medium: graphite on canvas.

Chelmon Rostratus

1975

Robert Lostutter

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Wahnes Parotia. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2009. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Wahnes Parotia

2009

Robert Lostutter

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Spangled Coquette. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1995. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Spangled Coquette

1995

Robert Lostutter

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Spotted Forktail. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1977. Medium: graphite on canvas.

Spotted Forktail

1977

Robert Lostutter

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Untitled (head of man and woman). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1996. Medium: graphite on paper.

Untitled (head of man and woman)

1996

Robert Lostutter

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Kyōsei 22. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2018. Medium: graphite on paper.

Kyōsei 22

2018

Robert Lostutter

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Kyōsei 18. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2018. Medium: graphite on paper.

Kyōsei 18

2018

Robert Lostutter

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Preparatory drawing and two palettes (Study for Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986-1990. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Preparatory drawing and two palettes (Study for Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan)

1986-1990

Robert Lostutter

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Preparatory drawing and two palettes (Study for Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986-1990. Medium: watercolor.

Preparatory drawing and two palettes (Study for Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan)

1986-1990

Robert Lostutter

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Preparatory drawing and two palettes (Study for Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986-1990. Medium: watercolor.

Preparatory drawing and two palettes (Study for Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan)

1986-1990

Robert Lostutter

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Three preparatory drawings (Study for Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Three preparatory drawings (Study for Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down)

1986

Robert Lostutter

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Three preparatory drawings (Study for Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Three preparatory drawings (Study for Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down)

1986

Robert Lostutter

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Three preparatory drawings (Study for Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Three preparatory drawings (Study for Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down)

1986

Robert Lostutter

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Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1986. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Parrot Watching the Sun Go Down

1986

Robert Lostutter

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Two Hummingbirds (Study for Scintillant Hummingbird and Gorgeted Woodstar). Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1982. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Two Hummingbirds (Study for Scintillant Hummingbird and Gorgeted Woodstar)

1982

Robert Lostutter

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Scintillant Hummingbird and Gorgeted Woodstar. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1982. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Scintillant Hummingbird and Gorgeted Woodstar

1982

Robert Lostutter

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Cinnamon Hummingbird and Allied Emerald. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1984. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Cinnamon Hummingbird and Allied Emerald

1984

Robert Lostutter

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Hummingbirds – Gould’s Jewelfront and Blue Throated Hummingbird. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1988. Medium: oil on canvas.

Hummingbirds – Gould’s Jewelfront and Blue Throated Hummingbird

1988

Robert Lostutter

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The Man Who Remembers What Birds Once Looked Like. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1973. Medium: oil on canvas.

The Man Who Remembers What Birds Once Looked Like

1973

Robert Lostutter

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Fish. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: c. 1974. Medium: oil on canvas.

Fish

c. 1974

Robert Lostutter

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Mandril. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1976. Medium: oil on canvas.

Mandril

1976

Robert Lostutter

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Dutchman 3. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1974. Medium: oil on canvas.

Dutchman 3

1974

Robert Lostutter

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Garden of Opiates 2. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2012. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Garden of Opiates 2

2012

Robert Lostutter

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Flemish Cloth. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2011. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Flemish Cloth

2011

Robert Lostutter

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Garden of Opiates 8. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2011. Medium: graphite on paper.

Garden of Opiates 8

2011

Robert Lostutter

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Garden of Opiates 2. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 2009. Medium: graphite on paper.

Garden of Opiates 2

2009

Robert Lostutter

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The Watch. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1987. Medium: graphite on canvas.

The Watch

1987

Robert Lostutter

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Morning for the Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan. Artist: Robert Lostutter. Date: 1989. Medium: watercolor and graphite on paper.

Morning for the Plate-Billed Mountain Toucan

1989

Robert Lostutter

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A Girl in the Arbor #13. Artist: Gladys Nilsson. Date: 2013. Medium: collage with gouache, watercolor, colored pencil, and crayon on paper.

A Girl in the Arbor #13

2013

Gladys Nilsson

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Noteable Monsters. Artist: Gladys Nilsson. Date: c. 1969. Medium: watercolor on paper.

Noteable Monsters

c. 1969

Gladys Nilsson

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Rtysts and Modules. Artist: Gladys Nilsson. Date: 1976. Medium: watercolor.

Rtysts and Modules

1976

Gladys Nilsson

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Plant #24. Artist: Gladys Nilsson. Date: 2011. Medium: collage and graphite on paper.

Plant #24

2011

Gladys Nilsson

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Plant #8. Artist: Gladys Nilsson. Date: 2010. Medium: collage and graphite on paper.

Plant #8

2010

Gladys Nilsson

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Examining. Artist: Gladys Nilsson. Date: 2013. Medium: gouache and watercolor on paper.

Examining

2013

Gladys Nilsson

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WeLL!! (perhaps a little later?). Artist: Jim Nutt. Date: 1978. Medium: colored pencil on paper.

WeLL!! (perhaps a little later?)

1978

Jim Nutt

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Fret. Artist: Jim Nutt. Date: 1990. Medium: acrylic on linen with stained wood frame.

Fret

1990

Jim Nutt

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Wow!. Artist: Jim Nutt. Date: 1980, colored added in 1994. Medium: colored pencil on paper.

Wow!

1980, colored added in 1994

Jim Nutt

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One good look!. Artist: Jim Nutt. Date: 1982. Medium: colored pencil on paper.

One good look!

1982

Jim Nutt

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Glove. Artist: Ed Paschke. Date: 1971. Medium: graphite and colored pencil on paper.

Glove

1971

Ed Paschke

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Floating Gloves. Artist: Ed Paschke. Date: 1971. Medium: oil on linen.

Floating Gloves

1971

Ed Paschke

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Stunted Stardom. Artist: Ed Paschke. Date: 1969. Medium: oil on canvas.

Stunted Stardom

1969

Ed Paschke

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Bill. Artist: Ed Paschke. Date: 1974. Medium: oil on canvas.

Bill

1974

Ed Paschke

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Tommy. Artist: Ed Paschke. Date: 1975. Medium: graphite on paper.

Tommy

1975

Ed Paschke

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Comedia. Artist: Ed Paschke. Date: 1984. Medium: oil on canvas.

Comedia

1984

Ed Paschke

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Midnight Sun. Artist: Christina Ramberg. Date: 1983. Medium: acrylic on masonite.

Midnight Sun

1983

Christina Ramberg

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Lizard Hair and Shoe. Artist: Christina Ramberg. Date: 1969-1970. Medium: acrylic on masonite, in artist's painted frame.

Lizard Hair and Shoe

1969-1970

Christina Ramberg

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Gloved. Artist: Christina Ramberg. Date: 1974. Medium: acrylic on Masonite, in artist's painted frame.

Gloved

1974

Christina Ramberg

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Rill Roller. Artist: Barbara Rossi. Date: 1976. Medium: graphite and colored pencil on board.

Rill Roller

1976

Barbara Rossi

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Poor Self Trait #1: Dog Girl. Artist: Barbara Rossi. Date: 1970. Medium: color etching and aquatint.

Poor Self Trait #1: Dog Girl

1970

Barbara Rossi

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Poor Self Trait #1: Dog Girl. Artist: Barbara Rossi. Date: 1970. Medium: photo-etching.

Poor Self Trait #1: Dog Girl

1970

Barbara Rossi

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Poor Self Trait #3: Curls. Artist: Barbara Rossi. Date: 1970. Medium: color photo-etching.

Poor Self Trait #3: Curls

1970

Barbara Rossi

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Poor Self Trait #3: Curls. Artist: Barbara Rossi. Date: 1970. Medium: color etching and aquatint.

Poor Self Trait #3: Curls

1970

Barbara Rossi

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Show Girl No. 2. Artist: Karl Wirsum. Date: 1969. Medium: acrylic on canvas, in artist's painted frame.

Show Girl No. 2

1969

Karl Wirsum

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EXceedO TuxEdO. Artist: Karl Wirsum. Date: 1982-83. Medium: pastel on paper.

EXceedO TuxEdO

1982-83

Karl Wirsum

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Uncommon Accumulation. Artist: Ray Yoshida. Date: 1975. Medium: collage of crayon on paper, pasted onto paper.

Uncommon Accumulation

1975

Ray Yoshida

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Indeliberate Dissociation. Artist: Ray Yoshida. Date: 1977. Medium: oil on canvas.

Indeliberate Dissociation

1977

Ray Yoshida

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