Within and beyond the American artworld, the politics of race have assumed a central position this year with a degree of ugliness that feels particularly virulent.
Over 100 artists and intellectuals — including Judith Butler, Lucy Lippard, Chantal Mouffe, Walid Raad, Martha Rosler, and Gayatri Spivak — have signed on to a public letter calling on participants to withdraw from Creative Time’s traveling Living as Form exhibition on the grounds that it is currently showing at an institution with a “central role in maintaining the unjust and illegal occupation of Palestine.”
Two more artists have joined Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency in withdrawing from the traveling iteration of Creative Time’s Living as Form exhibition curated by Nato Thompson, Hyperallergic has learned.
The revelation that a Creative Time exhibition curated by Nato Thompson has traveled to Israel unbeknownst to participants has drawn sharp rebukes from artists subscribing to the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, including the immediate withdrawal of one artist contacted by Hyperallergic with the news.
In one of those useful coincidences of the New York art scene, two current exhibitions discuss global commerce and history, labor and money through one peculiar entry point: sugar.
One of the season’s most anticipated art events will finally open to the public tomorrow. Kara Walker’s “A Subtlety,” aka the “Marvelous Sugar Baby,” is the renowned artist’s first public artwork.
“It’s a utopian vision of Brooklyn, isn’t it?” A friend asked this as we stood in the middle of her Prospect Heights block, watching people swirl around us, and I agreed. There appeared to be representatives of so many different races, ethnicities, genders, and economic classes, all packed into that one block, Park Place between Underhill and Vanderbilt Avenues.
I first learned about Nick Cave’s work in an undergraduate puppetry class. Puppetry, like architecture and some other disciplines, is the synthesis of a myriad of techniques both artistic and mechanical, attracting sculptors, dancers, and engineers in equal number. Similarly, Cave’s 30-strong herd of horses that visited Grand Central last week in his piece HEARD•NY, presented by MTA Arts for Transit and Creative Time, as well as the “Soundsuits” for which he gained initial recognition are genre-bending works of art: they are visual and performative wonders as well as feats of construction. Cave is the director of the Graduate Fashion Program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, so while he may be an unwitting puppeteer, he is certainly no stranger to the intersections of beauty, functionality, and craftsmanship.
Before Nick Cave’s “Heard•NY” galloped off into its first performance of its week-long installation in Grand Central Terminal, the soundsuit artist explained that he wanted to “produce a piece that brought us back to a dream state.” The 60 dancers from the Alvin Ailey School definitely gave the 30 fringed horse costumes a strange sort of life, as they changed into the horses and then out again into a frenzied dance of movement.
On October 12, during Creative Time’s 2012 Summit we liveblogged the evolving boycott over what some people were calling a “partnership” with an Israeli organization that received funds from the Israeli government. Now the venerable arts nonprofit has released a statement regarding the event and the claims by the boycotters. The letter was emailed to Summit Attendees today.
Hip hop duo Rebel Diaz, artist Narcenio Hall and Cairo-based art collective Mosireen are boycotting the two-day 2012 Creative Time Summit in Manhattan because of what they are calling a partnership with an Israeli organization that is funded by the Israeli government.
For his latest project, The Last Pictures, Trevor Paglen is doing something unconventional: he’s sending photographs into space. Paglen, an artist and writer with a PhD in geography, worked with researchers and assistants at public art organization Creative Time to select a group of 100 photographs meant to reflect the reign of humans on earth, “a visual record of our contemporary historical moment,” according to the project’s website; in the process, he conducted interviews with scientists, philosophers, artists, and historians about the idea. He then enlisted material scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to help him etch the pictures into an archival, gold-plated disc, and launched the photo set into space aboard a communications satellite. The pictures will live on there for billions of years — long past the time when humans inhabit the earth, probably until the end of the earth itself.