Medieval to Metal: Special exhibition on the guitar opens June 29 at the Currier Museum

Exhibit kicks off Friday night with the Side Door Series and guitar virtuoso Johnny A.

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MANCHESTER, NH – Medieval to Metal: The Art and Evolution of the Guitar, an exhibition celebrating the artistic development of the guitar, will open this Friday at the Currier Museum of Art.  The exhibition features 40 musical instruments, ranging from the rare and antique to the wildly popular and innovative, along with period photographs and album covers which document the recent history of the rock guitar.

The exhibition explores all facets of the world’s most popular instrument, from its history in popular culture over the past centuries to the modern efforts to reinvent the guitar with different materials, shapes, and approaches to design. Spanning centuries of design and craftsmanship, the exhibition takes visitors through the history of an object that is one of the most recognizable items on the planet.


The guitar pervades culture beyond music. It was an integral element of the work of artists like Vermeer and Picasso, and today it is incorporated into advertising everything from clothes and cars.

“It’s hard to find anyone who hasn’t been affected by the guitar,” stated H. P. Newquist, executive director of the National Guitar Museum, the organizer of the exhibition. “It’s a widely held belief that the two most recognizable man-made shapes on the planet are those of the Coca-Cola bottle and the electric guitar.”

Rickenbacher Lapsteel ES

Medieval to Metal opens to the public on June 29.

On Friday, June 28, the exhibition will be inaugurated with a special concert by guitar virtuoso Johnny A. The night begins with a pre-concert cocktail reception with live music. Guests will have an exclusive first look at the new exhibit and be able to talk directly with the curators in the galleries.

For tickets to the opening celebration Side Door Music Series featuring Johnny A, or more information on the Medieval to Metal exhibition, please visit currier.org.


About the Currier Museum of Art

The Currier Museum of Art is an internationally renowned art museum located in Manchester, New Hampshire. The Currier features European and American paintings, decorative arts, photographs, and sculpture, including works by Picasso, Monet, O’Keeffe, Andrew Wyeth, and LeWitt, with exhibitions, tours, and programs year-round.