“This show here is everything I’ve got in my heart and in my head,” beamed Nassau County Museum director Charles Riley, who curated the exhibit Anything Goes: The Jazz Age, which runs through July 8. It kicked off with an opening gala last month, showcasing powerful paintings and sculpture, intimate drawings (some never before exhibited), bold posters, sheet music, fashion, eye-dazzling jewelry, sleek furniture and musical instruments (including Victrola turntables and a piano playing Gershwin’s own piano rolls).
The giants among the artists of the twenties were Picasso, Léger, Miro, Gaston Lachaise, Stuart Davis, Florine Stettheimer and Tamara de Lempicka. Composers such as Gershwin and Porter were taking syncopation and the blues to new heights, while the Ballets Russes broke all dance conventions. The literature of the era included such masterworks as James Joyce’s Ulysses and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, which was begun in nearby Great Neck and inspired in part by a painting by Francis Cugat that is one of the highlights of the show. A gallery dedicated to the super-heroes of the age includes memorabilia related to Lindbergh and the original Hobey Baker trophy, college hockey’s highest honor named for a World War I flying ace.
Don’t miss out on this spectacular show that truly highlights the age of passion and reckless abandon. For more information, visit www.nassaumuseum.org.