On a Friday evening, my partner and I wander into an auditorium at Brown University and find ourselves five minutes into what is apparently Kenneth Goldsmith’s poem “The Body of Michael Brown.”
Between the proliferation of galleries in Bushwick and, to a lesser extent, Greenpoint, the small cadre of Dumbo galleries sticking it out, longtime heavyweights including the Brooklyn Museum and BRIC mounting ambitious shows, and Creative Time parachuting Kara Walker’s sugar sphinx into the Domino Sugar Factory, it’s been an exceptionally strong year for art in Brooklyn.
Donelle Woolford, the fictitious artist whose work has become a collaboration between Joe Scanlan, Abigail Ramsay, and me, has done an extraordinary thing. Her existence exhorts the public to rally and come to her defense, but has simultaneously exposed its inability to do so.
Let’s begin with the obvious: to attempt a comprehensive exhibition of contemporary art from across Brooklyn would be not only impossible but foolish, a kind of Tower of Babel of artistic practice. And so the Brooklyn Museum’s eagerly awaited Crossing Brooklyn is not a sweeping survey but a tight, thematic show, focused mostly on one specific type of art making manifest throughout the borough.
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.
We asked attendees to send us responses to our ArtTalk with the Yams in whatever form they liked so we could compile them here, offering a taste of the event in the process.
On Thursday, August 7, Hyperallergic will be hosting our next ArtTalk featuring the Yams Collective — aka HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN? — at their studio in Dumbo, Brooklyn.
Now that the Whitney Biennial is over and the critical debate around it has subsided, I feel it’s time to put this project to rest: I created Joe Scanlan.
There was no mention of the Whitney Museum or the Biennial, of Joe Scanlan, Donelle Woolford, or Michelle Grabner on the microphone at alternative arts space Freecandy last Thursday night.
The 38-member collective of artists that withdrew from the Whitney Biennial two weeks ago, known as the Yams Collective or HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN?, is screening its pulled contribution along with other material in an alternative Brooklyn space tonight and tomorrow.
The Yams Collective, the largest of the eight collectives participating in the 2014 Whitney Biennial, has withdrawn over objections to the curatorial program, Hyperallergic has learned.