Current Exhibitions

Long Beach Museum of Art
2300 E Ocean Blvd.
Color Fields

April 29 – August 20, 2023 | Color Fields presents an exhibition of first- and second-generation Color Field painters alongside contemporary artists engaging with ideas similar to those in the 1940s when the movement emerged in New York. A subgenre of Abstract Expressionism, Color Field art rejected gestural mark-making which up until this point, had been synonymous with painting. In its place, stretches or fields of color shifted the focus onto the viewer. Emphasizing form and process, and central to Color Field art was this simple yet radical change that gave viewers the space to impress their own perceptions—devoid of the artist’s “intention” as a guide.

From the Museum’s Permanent Collection, this exhibition showcases both a unique and extensive overview of Color Field painting from the likes of Theodoros Stamos, Barnett Newman, Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland, and Sam Francis. Works by seven Southern California artists included alongside these works from the collection echo the fundamentals of Color Field abstraction, seen reinterpreted in a contemporary context.

This exhibition is generously supported by The Kenneth T. and Eileen L. Norris Foundation, RuMBa Foundation of Long Beach and Bess J. Hodges Foundation.

The Corporate Collector
Gifts of the Gelson’s Collection

April 1 – August 20, 2023 | In 1951, brothers Bernard and Eugene Gelson opened the first Gelson’s Market in Burbank, California. Their vision for an upscale grocery experience with an open layout, custom fixtures, and floor-to-ceiling windows was an industry-first, and indicative of the midcentury modern sensibility that swept across Southern California in the 1950s. A parallel sense of spatial transience informed hard-edge paintings of the period, which combined the distinct forms of geometric abstraction with flat fields of monochromatic color.

Gifted to the Long Beach Museum of Art in 2016, The Gelson Collection consists of 28 paintings, works on paper, and wall sculptures of prominent hard-edge and color field artists. This exhibition brings together works by Ron Davis, Gene Davis, Sam Francis, Ellsworth Kelly, Joe Goode, Vasa Velizar Mihich, and an unknown artist—all of whose experimentations with color, form, and process remain significant influences on today’s contemporaries.

Image: Artist Unknown, Abstract 4, 1985, Watercolor on paper, 47 x 47 inches, Gift of Gelson’s 2016.9

Barbara Strasen

April 29 – August 20, 2023 | ALL TOGETHER NOW, presented in the Lane Oceanview Gallery showcases nine works made in the late 1960s by San Pedro-based artist Barbara Strasen. In 2016, LBMA exhibited Layer by Layer—which true to its title, presented highly complex, colorful, layered, and evocative imagery of natural elements together with figures in space. A premise of these tangled compositions was to encourage viewers to look in the moment, to be present with the work, to dig deeper and unearth a multitude of possibilities. ALL TOGETHER NOW suggests a similar intent, this time looking to memories, or at least, our shifting perceptions of them over time. Strasen seeks to find coalescence in the turbulence of apparently unrelated and contradictory images.

Following the opening reception, ALL TOGETHER NOW will be on view through August 20, 2023.

I AM: LBUSD Elementary Art Exhibition

April 13 – June 4, 2023 | This year, LBMA invited elementary school students across the district to submit a self-portrait that reflects their identities and to reflect on the different aspects that make them who they are and unique. The Long Beach Museum of Art extends a warm thank you to the students and teachers at the following schools for their participation in this exhibition: Dooley Elementary, Emerson Elementary, Kettering Elementary, Roosevelt Elementary, Oropeza Elementary, Hudson Elementary, Bryant Elementary, Stevenson Elementary, and Riley Elementary.

LBMA Downtown
356 E 3rd St.
Virginia Katz: Transitory Nature
April 15 – July 9, 2023 | At their core, the works in this exhibition look to the landscape for insight. Transitory, used to describe ephemera, Katz renders in the context of the natural world. Her inquests reveal the environment as a physical, three-dimensional space within an immaterial realm. And from this realm, she examines our complex relationship with Nature. Her reiterations of the landscape with various painting media consider the impermanence of all things—including the works themselves. These ideas are presented in three bodies of work concurrently: Mixed Media Monoprints, Watercolors, and Interventions as they relate to landscape painting.Join us for the opening reception on Saturday, April 15 from 6 – 7 PM.