Dayton Art Institute announces exhibitions for 2019 centennial celebration

The Dayton Art Institute will celebrate its 100th year with a series of special exhibitions.

“This will be a stellar year for exhibitions at the Dayton Art Institute, as is fitting for our centennial celebration,” Jerry N. Smith, the DAI’s chief curator, said.

“We will host three major special exhibitions during the year and will present several diverse, smaller exhibitions. There will be plenty to see and enjoy throughout the year.”

The special shows, two significant Asian art loans, and several “focus exhibitions” will commemorate the DAI, founded in 1919 as the Dayton Museum of Art in a Monument Avenue mansion in downtown Dayton.

The special exhibitions will begin with “For America: Paintings from the National Academy of Design,” Feb. 23-June 2.

The major traveling exhibition will debut at the DAI with 100 paintings by 79 artists including Winslow Homer, N.C. and Andrew Wyeth and John Singer Sargent.

“Our Century: Dayton Area Collects,” will bring together works from significant private art collections in the region from June 29–Sept. 22.

The exhibition will explore the role collectors have played in helping the DAI grow and looking ahead to the future.

Another special exhibit will showcase more than 240 pieces of art jewelry from the turn of the 20th century.

“Maker & Muse: Women and Early 20th Century Art Jewelry,” from Oct. 25–Jan. 19, 2020, will display the Art Nouveau styles of France, Germany and Austria and the Arts and Crafts movement in Britain and America.

The show will take a special look at the roles women played in the creation and wearing of art jewelry.

The focus exhibitions will highlight specific artists.

“Unlike our special exhibitions, which provide a deep dive into a subject, our upcoming focus exhibitions allow us to put a spotlight on a movement, an artist, a medium or idea,” Smith said. “These are smaller exhibitions with exceptional art that will touch on an array of diverse topics.”

Civil rights icon and author Dorothy Irene Height was rarely seen without a hat. Forty-two of her favorite hats will be on display and her life explored in “Dorothy Height’s Hats,” March 23–June 23.

A focus on French Impressionism and Claude Monet’s influence on art will be on display in “Monet and Impressionism,” May 11–Aug. 25.

The exhibition will have works by Edgar Degas, Camille Pissarro and Pierre Auguste Renoir on display, as well as Monet’s masterpiece, Waterloo Bridge, on special loan from the Denver Art Museum.

The 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing will be celebrated with “The Moon Museum,” on display June 29–Sept. 8.

The exhibit will feature designs by Andy Warhol and Rauschenberg and other works of art related to the moon and the Apollo missions.

“William Preston Mayfield Photographs,” Sept. 21–Dec. 29, will conclude the focus exhibitions.

Mayfield, a pioneering Dayton photographer who had a 60-year career in and around Dayton, was among the first to take photos from an airplane.

The dates for additional focus exhibitions, “Mona Lisa Today,” “In the Company of Friends: The Legacy of Kettering and Patterson,” and “Art of Ernest Blumenschein,” are still being finalized.

A stone sculpture from ancient Gandhara and an ancient Chinese bronze vessel will be on special loan during 2019 and on display in the Asian art galleries. The current exhibition, “Impressive: 100 Years of Japanese Prints at The DAI,” will continue throughout the centennial.

“You won’t want to miss these exhibitions, as well as the museum’s many other centennial events, including ‘100 Happenings for 100 Years’ and special community open houses,” Michael R. Roediger, the DAI’s director and CEO, said. “Please make plans to join us throughout 2019. We look forward to celebrating the museum’s rich history with the Dayton community.”

The Dayton Art Institute’s Centennial Celebration exhibitions for 2019:

Feb. 23–June 2: “For America: Paintings from the National Academy of Design”

March 23–June 23: “Dorothy Height’s Hats”

May 11–Aug. 25: “Monet and Impressionism”

June 29–Sept. 8: “The Moon Museum”

June 29–Sept. 22: “Our Century: Dayton Area Collects”

Sept. 21–Dec. 29: “William Preston Mayfield Photographs”

Oct. 25–Jan. 19, 2020: “Maker & Muse: Women and Early 20th Century Art Jewelry”

For more information about upcoming exhibitions and The Dayton Art Institute's centennial celebrations, visit or call 937-223-4ART (4278).

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