Global contemporary art events and news observed from New York City. Suggestion? Email us.
NEWS

Controversial Nick Cave Installation Heads to Brooklyn Museum

January 15th, 2021

The Brooklyn Museum will install Nick Cave’s piece Truth Be Told outside the museum, which generated controversy last during its installation at the Jack Shainman space in Kinderhook, NY.  “Museums are being called on to tell the truth, from the painful to the celebratory,” says museum director Anne Pasternak. “We can invite a constructive conversation.”
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Guggenheim Names Naomi Beckwith as Deputy Director and Chief Curator

January 15th, 2021

The Guggenheim has appointed Naomi Beckwith, formerly senior curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago as deputy director and chief curator. “If you look out over the cultural landscape — particularly in the U.S. — she is quite obviously one of the outstanding leaders of today with a huge potential as well,” says museum director Richard Armstrong. “She’s very adept at issues of identity and, particularly, multidisciplinary art. We have to think about the Guggenheim’s growth over the next few years, so it needs to be a person with enormous capacity.”
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Bloomberg Charts Rush of Galleries Moving Works Out of UK Before Brexit

January 15th, 2021

A piece in Bloomberg charts the rush by galleries to move works out of the UK before Brexit goes into effect. “The higher up the market, the more global it is,” says Anthony Browne, chairman of the British Art Market Federation, regarding the challenges posed by shipping more works outside of the UK borders. “It’s the smaller galleries and dealers and mid-market ones that have buyers in the EU that will be mostly affected.”
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Hank Willis Thomas Memorial to Go on View in Boston Commons

January 15th, 2021

Hank Willis Thomas’s 22-foot-high bronze memorial honoring the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King’s commitment to racial equity will go on view in Boston Commons. “At this moment in 2021 we are asking: What would it be for Boston to be the epicenter of civil rights? And of economic and racial justice?” says Imari Paris Jeffries, executive director of King Boston. “We want to imagine that and do that.”
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Curator Chris Sharp Opens Gallery in LA

January 15th, 2021

Curator Chris Sharp, part of the team behind Mexico City’s Lulu has opened his own space in Los Angeles. The space opens Jan. 23rd with a show of work by Emma McIntyre.
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Kunstmuseum Basel to Host Show of Drawings from Kara Walker’s Never Before Seen Archives

January 14th, 2021

A collection of drawings, collages and studies held for years in Kara Walker’s personal archives will go on view thus summer at Kunstmuseum Basel.  “I invited Kara Walker to do an exhibition at the Kunstmuseum Basel and proposed a focus on her drawings rather than her cutouts,” says curator Anita Haldemann. “She has hidden these drawings from the public and sometimes also from herself because they were either too intimate and too painful or too shocking to face them herself or to confront the audience with them.”
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NYT Calls for New Deal for the Arts

January 14th, 2021

A piece by Jason Farago in the New York Times this week calls for a New Deal for the Arts as a way to rehabilitate the currently struggling arts sector during the pandemic. “Not since 1945 has the United States required catharsis like it does in 2021,” he writes.
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Germany Returns the Last of the Confirmed Nazi-Looted Works from Gurlitt Trove

January 14th, 2021

Germany has returned the last of the 14 works from the Gurlitt Collection that could be authenticated as looted, DW reports. “We cannot make up for this severe suffering, but we are trying with the appraisal of Nazi art looting to make a contribution to historical justice and fulfill our moral responsibility,” says Culture Minister Monika Grütters.
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Jannis Kounellis to Open Major Retrospective of His Work at Walker Art Center in 2022

January 13th, 2021

Jannis Kounellis will receive the first major retrospective of his work in the US in 35 years, opening a major show at the Walker Art Center in 2022. “Jannis is an artist that moved all his life from one country to another to fulfill his dream of being an artist,” says curator Vincenzo de Bellis. “His works speak to memory, history, and migration—things which are very important today.”
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Smithsonian Partners with PBS for Online Educational Programming

January 13th, 2021

The Smithsonian will partner with PBS this year to launch a series of online education programs, the Washington Post reports.  “The Smithsonian has so many resources, but even we don’t have broad enough shoulders to do all of this,” says Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III. “The pandemic has given us the opportunity to fill a void. It has accelerated where we wanted to go. [PBS] gives us a great portal to do that.”
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

New York – Teresita Fernandez: “Maelstrom” at Lehmann Maupin Through January 23rd, 2021

January 15th, 2021

Teresita Fernandez, Rising (Lynched Land) (2020), via Lehmann Maupin
Teresita Fernandez, Rising (Lynched Land) (2020), via Lehmann Maupin

Taking over Lehmann Maupin’s New York exhibition space, artist Teresita Fernández’s new show, Maelstrom, focuses on a new series of monumental sculptures and installations that unapologetically visualize the enduring violence and devastation ignited by colonization.  Turning particular attention to the Caribbean archipelago, the first point of colonial contact in the Americas, Fernández challenges the viewer to consider nuanced readings of people and place, looking beyond dominant, continental narratives to instead consider the region as emblematic of an expansive and decentralized state of mind. Read More »

New York – Rachel Eulena Williams: “Tracing Memory” at Canada Gallery Through January 23rd, 2021

January 14th, 2021

Rachel Eulena Williams, Tracing Memory (Installation View), via Canada
Rachel Eulena Williams, Tracing Memory (Installation View), via Canada

Currently on view at Canada Gallery in New York, Tracing Memory, the debut exhibition by artist Rachel Eulena Williams sees the artist striking a balance between painting and sculpture, reveling in the structure and propositional space of painting while working freely against easy classifications or limitations.  Discarding a reliance on stretchers in favor of works that roam freely across the walls and set up unique geometric conversations in space, the artist’s work is a fascinating first offering at the gallery. Read More »

Paris – Raphaela Simon: “The Fashion Show” at Max Hetzler Through January 30th, 2021

January 13th, 2021

Raphaela Simon, Model mit Dresserin (2020), via Max Hetzler
Raphaela Simon, Model mit Dresserin (2020), via Max Hetzler

Walking into Galerie Max Hetzler in Paris, one is presented with a particularly intriguing scene, more akin to the interiors of a luxe fashion shop than a gallery: walls are covered with minimal, cool paintings depicting various designer goods and signifiers of upper class recreation and lifestyle, while a series of mannequins snake throughout the gallery, bearing aloof facial expressions and clothed in handmade fashions.  The show, fittingly titled The Fashion Show, is a presentation of new work by the artist Raphaela Simon, a coy commentary on consumer goods made for the center of the fashion world, Paris.

Raphaela Simon, Fleischwurst (2020), via Max Hetzler
Raphaela Simon, Fleischwurst (2020), via Max Hetzler

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New York – Jack Whitten: “I AM THE OBJECT” at Hauser & Wirth Through January 23rd, 2021

January 12th, 2021

Jack Whitten, My Argiroula: For Argiro Galeraki 1981-1995 (1995), via Hauser & Wirth
Jack Whitten, My Argiroula: For Argiro Galeraki 1981-1995 (1995), via Hauser & Wirth

Currently on view at Hauser & Wirth New York, the gallery is presenting a dynamic show of rarely seen works by American artist Jack Whitte, focusing in particular on the artist’s practice from 1991 through 2000, a period of intense experimentation during which, deeply affected by tumultuous world events, he strove to incorporate a full emotional spectrum into his work. Blurring the boundaries between sculpture and painting, and between the studio and the world, the multidimensional works on view combine geometric abstraction and found objects to mine spiritual and metaphysical thematic veins. Read More »

New York – Adrian Ghenie: “The Hooligans” at Pace Gallery Through February 27th, 2021

January 11th, 2021

Adrian Ghenie, Gauguin with Cowboy Hat (2020), via Pace
Adrian Ghenie, Gauguin with Cowboy Hat (2020), via Pace

The Hooligans, Adrian Ghenie’s fourth solo exhibition with Pace Gallery, brings forth a selection of nine new paintings and three drawings from the enigmatic and expressive Romanian artist.  All produced within the last year, the show draws on Ghenie’s continued interest and exploration of abstraction and its history, pulling in particular here from the work of  J.M.W. Turner, Vincent van Gogh, and Paul Gauguin. Radicals in their time, their work unsettled artistic conventions, and here are treated as such in Ghenie’s equally visceral style.

Adrian Ghenie, The Impressionists (2020), via Pace
Adrian Ghenie, The Impressionists (2020), via Pace

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Los Angeles – Anna Rosen: “Egg and Dart” at Night Gallery Through January 23rd, 2021

January 8th, 2021

Anna Rosen, Fabergé (2020), via Night Gallery
Anna Rosen, Fabergé (2020), via Night Gallery

Currently on at Night Gallery in Los Angeles, artist Anna Rosen has brought forward a series of new fresco paintings, marking her second solo show with the gallery. Mining a particular juxtaposition between the language of modern art, and a deconstruction of the language of that era in art history, Rosen’s pieces are a colorful and enigmatic reinvention of its tenets.    Read More »

Los Angeles – March Avery at Blum & Poe Through January 9th, 2021

January 7th, 2021

March Avery, Houseplants (1974), via Blum & Poe
March Avery, Houseplants (1974), via Blum & Poe

Currently on view at Blum & Poe’s Los Angeles exhibition space, the New York-based artist March Avery is presenting a solo exhibition of works spanning forty years of practice, following up on the recent announcement of the artist’s addition to the gallery’s roster, and marking her first show with the gallery in its spacious Los Angeles home. Read More »

New York – Kim Jones: “RATS LIVE ON NO EVIL STAR” at Bridget Donahue Through January 9th, 2021

January 6th, 2021

Kim Jones, Untitled (1958-59, 2004, 2020), via Bridget Donahue
Kim Jones, Untitled (1958-59, 2004, 2020), via Bridget Donahue

Artist Kim Jones has been working in sculpture and performance for over 50 years, unifying a range of complex political and social sentiments through his challenging and unique works.  In his first exhibition at Bridget Donahue this month, RATS LIVE ON NO EVIL STAR, Jones fills the gallery with selections from five decades of work. Jones’s experience as a soldier in the Vietnam War has influenced his artistic production, as well as his experience using leg braces after an illness restricting his ability to walk at the age of seven. Read More »

New York – Alexis Rockman: “Lost Cargo” at Sperone Westwater Through January 16th, 2021

January 5th, 2021

Alexis Rockman, The Rime (2020), via Sperone Westwater
Alexis Rockman, The Rime (2020), via Sperone Westwater

Currently on at Sperone Westwater in New York, artist Alexis Rockman is presenting a selection of new watercolors that mark a continued investigation of the medium in relation to the impending climate disaster and resulting crises in human migration and social/political responses.  Marking his fourth solo show with the gallery since 1992, the show takes a lyrical and metaphorical tone in addressing these concepts, marking natural signifiers and moments of mythological crisis as deeply resonant notes in the current state of humanity.  Read More »

Paris – Gunther Uecker: “Lichtbogen” at Lévy Gorvy Through January 23rd, 2021

January 4th, 2021

Gunther Uecker, Lichtbogen (2020), at Levy Gorvy
Gunther Uecker, Lichtbogen (2020), at Levy Gorvy

Marking a new wrinkle in the artist’s already boundless body of work, artist Gunther Uecker has brought forth a new selection of pieces on view currently at Lévy Gorvy recently inaugurated Paris exhibition space.  The show features a range of new pieces, a dramatic development in the artist’s seven-decade practice, radiant paintings that vibrate with the energy of their creation, embodying fluidity and light. Read More »