Hospice of the Western Reserve Partners with MOCA Cleveland

The Spring 2014 exhibition at MOCA Cleveland runs through June 8 and features 22 national and international artists. The spring season kicks off with a provocative exhibition that uses mortality as its subject. DIRGE features 22 selected artists, both living and deceased, who work in painting, drawing, sculpture, video, photography, and installation. The exhibition aims to create a substantive space in which we might better understand, even appreciate life, by reflecting on its end.

A dirge is a song expressing mourning. Likewise, the artworks featured communicate a range of creative responses to death and how it conditions life. Some works are highly subjective exercises by artists facing their own impending death. Others draw from the loss of those closest to examine the role of grief, memory, and ritual. Made using diverse processes and materials, the featured artworks probe the mysterious nature of death to identify and reinforce the most potent characteristics of life.

In connection with DIRGE, MOCA Cleveland is partnering with Hospice of the Western Reserve to offer a special program that expands upon the subject matter in a significant and progressive way. On Thursday, May 8, 2014 at 7 p.m., Chuck Behrens, spiritual care coordinator for Hospice of the Western Reserve, who has sat at the bedside with countless individuals in their final moments of life, will share his unique insights about the relationship between creative expression, spirituality, and mortality. An accomplished speaker and advisor, Behrens received his Masters in Divinity from Lexington Theological Seminary and has worked in a spiritual care capacity with Hospice of the Western Reserve since 1994.

“Hospice of the Western Reserve is honored to be partnering with MOCA to support this innovative exhibit that shines a light on what has long been a taboo topic in our society,” said Michele Seyranian, the nonprofit agency’s Business Development Officer.

The 2014 exhibition programs are supported in part by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, and Leadership Circle gifts from the Britton Fund, Margaret Fulton Mueller, Agnes Gund, Scott Mueller, Joanne Cohen and Morris Wheeler, Margaret Cohen and Kevin Rahilly, Doreen and Dick Cahoon, Becky Dunn, Harriet and Victor Goldberg, Donna and Stewart Kohl, and Toby Devan Lewis. All MOCA Cleveland exhibitions and programs are presented with major support from The William Bingham Foundation, Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, The Cleveland Foundation, The George Gund Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, Nesnadny + Schwartz, The Ohio Arts Council and the continuing support of the Museum’s Board of Directors, patrons, and members.

DIRGE: Reflections on [Life and] Death will be on view through June 8, 2014. Admission for MOCA Cleveland members and children under 6 years old is free. General admission is $8; seniors 65+, $6; and students with valid ID, $5. MOCA Cleveland’s hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 12 – 5 pm; open until 9 pm Thursdays; closed Mondays. For more information on MOCA and all of its programming, visitwww.MOCAcleveland.org or call 216-421-8671. 

Laurie Henrichsen


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Volume 5, Issue 3, Posted 12:48 PM, 04.10.2014