Strange Weather: from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation

Kehinde Wiley (American (b. 1977))
Marechal Floriano Peixoto II, 2012
oil on canvas
107 x 83 in.

Carlos Amorales (Mexican (b. 1970))
Useless Wonder Maps 1, edition 4/7, 2010
39 1/2 x 52 1/2 in.

Alison Saar (American (b. 1956))
Grow'd, 2019
cast bronze
78 1/2 x 39 x 38 3/4 in.


Strange Weather: from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation

October 21, 2023 to April 07, 2024

By and by all trace is gone, and what is forgotten is not only the footprints but the water too and what is down there. The rest is weather. Not the breath of the disremembered and unaccounted for, but wind in the eaves, or spring ice thawing too quickly. Just weather.” -Toni Morrison

Strange Weather: From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation features contemporary art works which illuminate and reframe the boundaries of bodies and the environment. The artworks included in the exhibition span five decades, from 1970-2020, and are drawn together for how they creatively call attention to the impact and history of forced migrations, industrialization, global capitalism, and trauma on humans and the contemporary landscape. 

Weather can refer to both subtle and violent atmospheric conditions in a given place and time. The influential artists in the exhibition utilize a range of aesthetic strategies, including abstraction, portraiture, figurative painting, landscape, and installation, to explore the current atmospheric strangeness. Julie Mehretu’s three prints created as a response to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 render abstract an intricate cartography of a rapidly changing climate. Kehinde Wiley’s large-scale painting, Marechal Floriano Peixoto II, 2009 monumentalizes issues of identity and nature. Nicola Lopez’s constructed collage monoprints show startlingly dystopian urban landscapes, with iron structures and vibrant colors. Wendy Red Star's photographic series, “Four Seasons,” links weather patterns to the consumption and commodification of Native American culture. Together, these and other works make the body and the land legible as paired sites of contestation, offering profound insights about the connections between aesthetics, history and our tempestuous climate. 

Artists include Carlos Almarez, Carlos Amorales, Leonardo Drew, Joe Feddersen, Hock E Aye Vi Edgar Heap of Birds, James Lavadour, Nicola Lopez, Hung Liu, Julie Mehretu, Wendy Red Star, Alison Saar, Lorna Simpson, Kiki Smith, Charles Wilbert White, Kehinde Wiley, and Terry Winters. Concurrent with Strange Weather, a capsule exhibition of the works of Glenn Ligon from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation will be on view in the JSMA’s Artist Project Space.

Virtual Tour

Strange Weather is curated by Dr. Rachel Nelson, director, Institute of the Arts and Sciences, UC Santa Cruz in collaboration with Professor Jennifer González, History of Art and Visual Culture, UC Santa Cruz. The exhibition is organized by the Institute of the Arts and Sciences and the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History. 

The works in this exhibition were collected by Jordan D. Schnitzer, an alum of the University of Oregon and one of the country’s premiere collectors of contemporary art.  Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation in Portland, Oregon was established in 1997.  Since the program’s inception, the Foundation has organized over 180 exhibitions and has art exhibited at over 160 museums.

About the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation

At age 14, Jordan D. Schnitzer bought his first work of art from his mother’s Portland, Oregon contemporary art gallery, evolving into a lifelong avocation as collector. He began collecting contemporary prints and multiples in earnest in 1988. Today, the collection has become one of the most important post-war and contemporary collections in all mediums, exceeding 20,000 objects and has grown to be the country’s largest private collection of prints and multiples.  He generously lends work from his collection to qualified institutions with no additional fees. The Foundation has organized over 180 exhibitions and has had art exhibited at over 160 museums. Mr. Schnitzer is also President of Schnitzer Properties, a privately owned real estate investment company based in Portland, Oregon, owning and managing office, multi-tenant industrial, multi-family and retail properties in six western states.

The Foundation was established in 1997 as a non-profit organization to manage the collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation.  The Foundation publishes scholarly brochures, exhibition catalogues, and catalogues raisonnés in conjunction with exhibitions drawn from the collections.  The Foundation also funds museum outreach and programming – especially to lesser served communities – furthering the mission of letting artists speak to us, through their art, on important issues facing society.