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Betty Branch, A Retrospective

Friday, September 02, 2022 - Sunday, March 05, 2023

This comprehensive look at the expansive career of beloved local artist Betty Branch is drawn from the Taubman Museum of Art’s permanent collection, private collectors, and the artist herself, examining the evolution of Branch’s artwork and processes.

Betty Branch began her art career in her mid-forties, receiving both her BA and MA in Studio Art from Hollins University. During her studies she discovered that, while she was adept at painting and drawing, sculpture was her primary passion. Branch’s output is prolific, and she has created hundreds of artworks over the last four decades ranging in scale from palm-sized fetishes to monumental public sculptures.

This exhibition will follow the trajectory of Branch’s career, focusing not only on her exploration of female form, rites of passage, and personal experiences metaphorically portrayed, but on her mastery of a wide array of additive and reductive sculpture in wax, clay, fiber, and stone. Branch’s rich history will be featured through a large installation of a portion of her studio including sketches, maquettes, tools, clippings, and inspirational objects produced and collected throughout her career, providing an intimate peek into the brilliant mind of Betty Branch.

The exhibition is on view September 2, 2022-March 5, 2023 in the David R. and Susan S. Goode Gallery, the Media Lab, and the Bank of America/Dominion Resources Gallery. 

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Image credits (top)

Betty Branch's studio (detail), Courtesy of Amy Pearman, Boyd Pearman Photography

 (left top right, top to bottom)

Betty Branch (American, born 1934), Isabel, 1998, Bronze, Gift of the artist, 1984.015

Betty Branch (American, born 1934), Stretch I and II, 1998, Bronze, Gift of the artist, 1999.027 and 1999.028

Betty Branch (American, born 1934), Dancer, 1989, Rosa Portuguese marble, Purchased with funds provided by the Collector’s Circle, 2008.104