Fragments of Memory

Sep 20, 2024 – Jan 26, 2025
Menil Drawing Institute

Fragments of Memory, a selection of works from the Menil’s permanent collection, explores the ways in which the past imbues the present. In their drawings, the featured artists take up commonplace embodiments of personal and collective memory, such as scrapbooks, snapshots, notes, relics, and odes, to reimagine how we might access fraught memories and contested histories. In the hands of these artists, such as Gael Stack, Luc Tuymans, Sari Dienes, among others with works on view in this exhibition, the past becomes replete with possibility, proposing new understandings of our present.

Memories are incomplete renditions of the past—composites built from slivers of recollections that reveal the emotions behind moments. The material form that memories take, such as bits of ephemera pressed into a scrapbook, can be similarly splintered. The drawings presented in this exhibition were created from the mid-20th century to the present moment and represent different ways that artists have placed fragments of personal experiences and historical events at the heart of their work.

Fragments of Memory is curated by Kelly Montana, Assistant Curator, Menil Drawing Institute.

This exhibition is generously supported by Sheila Noeth and Ted Dohman, and by the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance.