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Friday, 20 March 2015 12:06

The Black Mountain College Museum & Arts Center Embarks on a Monumental Expansion Project

Anni Albers. Anni Albers. Textile Arts Center

In the annals of 20th-century American art, few legends loom quite as large as that of Black Mountain College. Founded in 1933 by the classics scholar John Andrew Rice and the engineer Theodore Dreier, it was a progressive institution based in Black Mountain, a small North Carolina town that aimed to place art making at the heart of a liberal arts education. That same year, the Nazis forced the closing of another grand experiment, Germany’s Bauhaus school, prompting many of its teachers and students to decamp for the United States. Several landed at Black Mountain, most prominently Josef Albers, who was chosen to lead the art program, and his wife, Anni, who taught textile design and weaving.

Under Albers, whose course on materials and form was one of only two requirements (the other was a class on Plato), Black Mountain soon became known as a kind of Shangri-La for avant-garde art.

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