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Three exhibits open fall season at de Saisset Museum

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept.8, 2000 - Santa Clara University's de Saisset Museum opens its 10-week fall exhibition season on Sept. 23, celebrating the University's 150th anniversary, with two new exhibits: Jewish ritual objects by New York artist Tobi Kahn, and paintings by former SCU art professor Joseph Thomas.

The museum also opens its 46th year with a year-long exhibition of paintings by its namesake, San Jose painter Ernest de Saisset, from the museum's permanent collection.

The museum season opens Sept.23 and continues through Dec. 1., Tuesdays through Sundays.

Entitled "AVODA: Objects of the Spirit-Ceremonial Objects by Tobi Kahn," the Kahn exhibit features 58 ceremonial objects fashioned by the New York-based artist in his signature style that combines timeless images of nature with spare and contemporary treatment.

"Avoda: Objects of the Spirit" is a traveling exhibition curated by Laura Kruger and circulated by Carol Spinner. It was made possible by sponsorship of the Exhibition Advisory Committee of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, New York.

The exhibition's showing at the de Saisset Museum is supported by the Santa Clara University 150th Anniversary fund and is part of SCU's celebration of its founding by Italian Jesuits in 1851.

"Unlikely Portraits, Seasonal Strands: Recent Paintings" by Joseph Thomas, former SCU art professor, also opens Sept. 23.

What do weather and portraiture share in common? Thomas sees weather as a metaphor for mood, and his paintings reflect this viewpoint. Thomas' canvases resemble abstract expressionism. Thomas completed the paintings in this exhibition while serving as visiting assistant professor in SCU's art and art history department, 1998-2000. This exhibition also is co-sponsored by SCU 150th Anniversary.

"Ernest de Saisset: Paintings from the Permanent Collection" also opens Sept.23, and will continue through the end of the 2000-2001 season.

Ernest de Saisset (1864-1899), the namesake of the de Saisset Museum, was born to a prominent San Jose family that immigrated to the United States from France during the Gold Rush years. He attended then Santa Clara College for three years. This survey of 10 paintings from the museum's permanent collection shows the style and content of de Saisset's paintings.

The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will be closed Nov. 23 - 27, and Dec.2 - Jan.1. Admission is free. For more information, call the de Saisset Museum at 408-554-4528.

The 17,000-square-foot museum opened next to the Mission Santa Clara de Asis on the Santa Clara University campus in 1955. The member-supported, privately funded institution operated by Santa Clara University, is accredited by the American Association of Museums.


For more information, contact Ann Koster, public relations officer and collections manager at the de Saisset Museum, at 408-554-6877. For information about Santa Clara University and for SCU's 150th celebration, see

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