Women of Newcomb:
- DurationJune 3 – July 24, 2016
- Works byLouise Grosz, Mary Alice Peak Reiss, Ida Kohlmeyer, Carolyn Frohsin Heller, Stephanie Hirsch
- Curated ByMonica Ramirez-Montagut
Marking its twentieth anniversary and honoring the Newcomb College legacy, the museum will present an exhibition of recent acquisitions by Newcomb College alumnae: Louise Grosz (B.Des. ’30); Mary Alice Peak Reiss (B.Des. ’30); Ida Kohlmeyer (B.A. ’33, M.F.A. ’56), Carolyn Frohsin Heller (’59), and Stephanie Hirsch (’92).
Louise Grosz (1908–2003) was one of the first significant female commercial artists to work in New Orleans. Her repertoire included design work with local department stores Gus Mayer, Godchaux, Maison Blanche, Dillard’s, Cushman’s, and Porter Stevens, as well as Macy’s in New York.
Mary Alice Peak Reiss (1909–1981) designed scenery and costumes for New Orleans Carnival organizations, including the Krewe of Rex with which she worked for nearly 15 years. Throughout her professional career she continued to paint in her home studio and also with a group of Newcomb alumnae of New Orleans’ Studio 8.
One of the most recognized artists to graduate from Newcomb, Ida Kohlmeyer (1912–1997) was strongly influenced by the Abstract Expressionists, including Hans Hofmann with whom she studied. She worked in an array of media—painting, sculpture, printmaking—and was the subject of the museum’s 2004 exhibition, Systems of Color.
Inspired by Kohlmeyer, Carolyn Frohsin Heller (1937–2011) utilized bold shapes and colors, often depicting the tropical environs of south Florida, her home for fifty years. Starting with prints, wood-cuts, and acrylics on canvas, she later expanded into jewelry, scarves, and mixed-media pieces. Several of her works were reproduced and distributed by Williams-Sonoma.
Stephanie Hirsch (1970– ) uses beads, sequins, and embroidery to explore deeper or double meaning of words with humor and enlightenment. She was recently the P3 Studio artist-in-residence through the Art Production Fund at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.