Photo: Henrik Kam

Open Ended

Painting and Sculpture since 1900


Floor 2

This presentation of masterworks and experimental pieces from SFMOMA’s collection of painting and sculpture explores themes that have shaped the history of modern art from the early twentieth century to our own time. Organized as a series of chapters, the exhibition focuses on revolutionary ideas, geographical centers, individual artists, and relationships between artists. Together, the works in Open Ended explore the complexities and even contradictions of modern and contemporary art, suggesting new interpretations of the museum’s collection, and examining the passions and beliefs that have spurred artists’ creativity in a rapidly changing world.

Reinstallation of the painting and sculpture collection is supported in part by the Henry Luce Foundation and an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Entry to this exhibition is included with general admission. Tickets are available now; advance online purchase is highly recommended.

Header image: Photo: Henrik Kam

Exhibition Preview

  • Artwork image, Ruth Asawa Untitled 1958

    Ruth Asawa, Untitled (S.114, Hanging, Six-Lobed Continuous Form within a Form with One Suspended and Two Tied Spheres), ca. 1958; collection SFMOMA, Phyllis C. Wattis Fund for Major Accessions; © Estate of Ruth Asawa; photo: Katherine Du Tiel

  • Artwork image, Henri Matisse's Femme au Chapeau

    Henri Matisse, Femme au chapeau (Woman with a Hat), 1905; collection SFMOMA, bequest of Elise S. Haas; © Succession H. Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; photo: Ben Blackwell

  • Artwork image, Mark Rothko's No. 14, 1960, 1960
    Mark Rothko, No. 14, 1960, 1960; collection SFMOMA, Helen Crocker Russell Fund purchase; © 1998 Kate Rothko Prizel & Christopher Rothko / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; photo: Ben Blackwell
  • Artwork image, Marcel Duchamp Fountain

    Marcel Duchamp, Fountain, 1917/1964; collection SFMOMA, purchase through a gift of Phyllis C. Wattis; © Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris / Estate of Marcel Duchamp; photo: Ben Blackwell

Newly On View

Mira Schendel, Trenzinho (Little Train), 1965

Named by artist Mira Schendel’s young daughter, Little Train is a delicate construction of blank rice paper and cotton thread. Gently animated by the motion of passersby, the piece conjures familiar feelings of passage, movement, and the unknown.

Image: Mira Schendel, Trenzinho (Little Train), 1965/1982; collection SFMOMA, Phyllis C. Wattis Fund for Major Accessions; © Estate of Mira Schendel

Related Presentation

Composing Nature: Paul Klee and John Cage

October 21, 2017–March 11, 2018

Explore the vital role of nature in the works on paper by Swiss-born modernist Paul Klee and prints made at the Bay Area’s Crown Point Press by pioneering composer and visual artist Cage. Though separated by more than a generation, each artist found in nature not only a shared subject but also a compositional model.

On view on Floor 2.

Image: Paul Klee, Garten der Leidenschaft (Garden of Passion), 1913; collection SFMOMA, gift of the Djerassi Art Trust