To See Is to Have: Navigating Today’s Art Ecosystem

May 18, 2017 to August 6, 2017

The inspiration behind To See Is to Have: Navigating Today’s Art Ecosystem is to make private art public, and to share with every member of our community selections from the diverse collections of members of the McNay Contemporary Collectors Forum (MCCF). The artworks on view open doors to new worlds of discovery, and have been selected from the personal collections of the members of MCCF, who dedicate themselves to learning about, engaging with, and collecting contemporary art. By presenting a diverse group of objects not typically on public view, this exhibition reinforces the McNay’s commitment to providing life-changing experiences through engagement with the visual arts for all visitors.

MCCF sponsors many programs, including trips to national and international destinations. In total, members of MCCF have traveled to more than 40 cities together. In each location, they visit artists, curators, art dealers, and fellow collectors in the spaces where those individuals live and interact with art, and they learn about the unique characteristics of various art communities.

Like a biological community of organisms interacting in nature, the art world thrives when it functions as an ecosystem of interconnected artists, art dealers, curators, and collectors. Each part works together to drive the creative production and exchange of art works in studios, galleries, museums, and art fairs around the world. Although the practice of collecting art is often thought of as an activity reserved for only a select few, this exhibition proves that the world of art can be explored at any level of experience.

Accompanied by an illustrated gallery guide that attempts to break down the barriers to collecting art, To See Is to Have: Navigating Today’s Art Ecosystem encourages and emboldens visitors to embark on their own journeys of discovery of contemporary art. 

This exhibition is organized by Jackie Edwards, Assistant Curator, McNay Art Museum. The Elizabeth Huth Coates Exhibition Endowment and the Arthur and Jane Stieren Fund for Exhibitions are generously funding this exhibition. Additional support is provided by the AT&T Foundation and Alan Beckstead.

Jesse Amado, Will Work for Free and Forever (Let’s Provide Yves Klein Blue to Street Beggars), 2015. Polychrome Le Corbusier on paper, mirror. Collection of Pam Wagner. Image courtesy of Ruiz-Healy Art.