A Wild Story: The David and Sarojini Johnson Print Collection

February 23 – May 21, 2023 

Please note: DOMA will be closed to the public March 4 - 13 for Ball State's Spring Break and May 6 for Commencement Day ceremonies on the Arts Terrace.

This exhibition is the first public presentation of an outstanding Midwestern collection amassed over four decades by printmakers and educators David and Sarojini Johnson. The display features relief and intaglio prints created by more than 25 artist printmakers represented in the Johnsons’ collection, including works by Francisco Goya, Lea Grundig, Stanley William Hayter, Mauricio Lasansky, and Sue Coe. The selection emphasizes the contributions of German Expressionist and Midwestern artists, with concentrations of art condemned by the Nazis as degenerate (entartete Kunst) and the legacy of printmaking at Atelier 17. These works are juxtaposed with several prints from the David Owsley Museum of Art’s collection that incorporate items acquired for the museum with David Johnson’s advice. A catalogue with essays by the collectors and contemporary Midwestern printmakers examines the democratic foundation of print collecting and the Johnsons’ desire to acquire works on paper of historical significance, quality, and social impact.   

DOMA regularly schedules programs related to special exhibitions. For A Wild Story: The David and Sarojini Johnson Print Collection, the following events are offered to enhance the enjoyment and appreciation of this extensive show:

February 27, 4pm: Educator Exhibition Overview (A free tour for faculty, educators, and museum Friends; registration appreciated.)

March 23, 5pm: Printmakers Panel and Reception (A free public talk, no registration required; the museum will be open to the public for a 5:00 p.m. reception prior to the 6:00 p.m. talk for visitors who wish to come early to view the exhibition.)

Image: Käthe Kollwitz (German, 1867–1945). The Young Couple (Junges Paar), 1904, soft-ground etching, plate: 11 3/4 x 12 9/16 in., The David and Sarojini Johnson Print Collection. © 2023 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Rising to the Surface: Paintings by Debbie Ma

September 28 – December 21, 2023 

Debbie Ma’s abstract paintings are marked by their sense of order, balance, and a surface dynamism informed by her studies in graphic design and inspired by a cross-section of modern masters. Her use of white and its variants evoke ancient walls and sculptures, Italian frescoes, as well as paintings by American Minimalist Robert Ryman and Spanish artist Miquel Barceló. Ma’s choice of materials, such as her signature medium of marble dust, lends her paintings a reflective quality, sculptural effect, and, as in Antoni Tàpies’s later works, a sense of “meditative emptiness.” Ma notes how “Working with stone, albeit in powder form, demands the same physicality as carving. I always describe my paintings as two-dimensional sculptures because a lot of effort is made to create volume and thickness.”

Ma speaks many languages and filters them into her work, which is both varied and consistent, preoccupied as she is with materials and their surprising effects. There are Cy Twombly-like marks, calligraphic jottings, and Jackson Pollock–evoking gestures and layering. She says she is fascinated with grids (but not too tightly administered) and can’t resist patterning and surface textures. Her use of geometry suggests how we view and measure what we see.

Surprisingly, having long worked mostly in monochrome, Ma has recently been experimenting with colors in her works, many with a sculptural impasto appearance where light, texture, and complimentary tones on paper produce an unexpected degree of spontaneity.


Image: Debbie Ma, American (born 1967), Social Fabric, 2019, marble dust on canvas, 72 x 90 in. (182 x 328 cm) © Debbie Ma. 

Beyond the Medici: The Haukohl Family Collection

February 22 – May 19, 2024 

The Beyond the Medici exhibition presents a selection of artworks from the Haukohl Family Collection, the largest private collection of Florentine Baroque art of the late 16th to the early 18th centuries outside of Italy. Assembled over more than 35 years by Houston-based art collector and co-founder of the Medici Archive Project Sir Mark Fehrs Haukohl, the collection includes paintings and sculptures depicting allegories, religious narratives, genre scenes, and portraits. The exhibition sheds light on the intellectual history of Florence under the reign of the Medici Grand Dukes, while at the same time illuminating the deep interest in science and painting founded on disegno (drawing or preliminary study) during the Florentine Baroque period. Overall, the exhibition and its accompanying catalogue illustrate how the Florentine artists of the 17th and early 18th centuries influenced European art history, politics, and philosophy to a far greater extent than art historical research and the public have previously perceived. The collection highlights the elegance and bravura (dramatic skill) of Italian artists along with showcasing the role of women in history. Sir Mark and his personal philanthropies have launched an American college art museum tour, of which the David Owsley Museum of Art is a welcome beneficiary. Please join us and bear witness to the beauty of Florentine Baroque art and culture.


Image: Onorio Marinari (1617-1716), Madonna and Child, oil on canvas, 33.5 x 29.5 in., Haukohl Collection. Photo Credit: MNHA/Tom Lucas 

Image: Felice Ficherelli, (1605-1660), St. Sebastian Tended by Saint Irene, oil on canvas, 40.2 x 40.2 in., Haukohl Collection. Photo Credit: MNHA/Tom Lucas 

The David Owsley Museum of Art has proudly hosted engaging exhibitions over the years for our University community and other diverse audiences to enjoy.

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David Owsley Museum of Art

2021 W. Riverside Avenue
Muncie , IN 47306

9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. (Tuesday–Friday)
1:30–4:30 p.m. (Saturday)


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