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The inaugural exhibition at the new Whitney Museum of American Art, which opens to the public today, is predicated on the elusiveness of a cohesive and stable national identity in the United States. The enormous show is titled America Is Hard to See after the 1951 Robert Frost poem of the same name — whose original title was “And All We Call America” — in which he ruminates on the expeditions of Christopher Columbus:
America is hard to see.
Less partial witnesses than he
In book on book have testified
They could not see it from outside —
Or inside either for that matter.
But, with more than 600 works by over 400 artists, it’s actually shockingly easy to spot America in America Is Hard to See. There are works featuring US flags, US presidents (including Richard Nixon, Ronald Regan, and Barack Obama), a US vice-president (Dick Cheney), US soldiers, and the US Capitol building. There are works that have “America” in their titles, and even one that just consists of the word “America” in neon letters. So don’t believe what Frost and the Whitney curators tell you — here’s proof that America isn’t hard to see at all.
In a world delighted and entertained by displays of material excess, Diane Simpson shows that there is another possibility.
The animal carcass sculptures are gruesome yet their materials — the artist’s own discarded clothing — lend them some gentleness.
Art by Athena LaTocha, Wendy Red Star, Marianne Nicolson, Anita Fields, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith & Neal Ambrose-Smith, and more is on view through January 2022.
Mr. Bernatowicz, in your introductory text you talk about the need for honesty, the disease of hypocrisy, overreaching governments. You do not fulfill a single one of your own ideals.
The biggest problem with turning Dune into a film is that the book appears increasingly derivative of generic sci-fi tropes.
Ed Roberson’s motorcycle ride from Pittsburgh to the Pacific is a quest-romance, an exploration of American culture and American mythology.
View work by over 40 experimental artists and collectives from throughout the Americas who contributed to New York’s art scene during the 1960s and ’70s.
The legendary performer Ricky Jay amassed a collection of about 10,000 rare books, posters, and artwork about all things esoteric.
The proceeds will benefit the BDC’s community-centered initiatives and exhibitions.