U.S. Museum Exhibitions

The following guide to museum shows currently on view is compiled from Artforum’s three-times-yearly exhibition preview. Subscribe now to begin a year of Artforum—the world’s leading magazine of contemporary art. You’ll get all three big preview issues, featuring Artforum’s comprehensive advance roundups of the shows to see each season around the globe.

Louise Fishman, Untitled, 2011, acrylic on metal, 8 1/2 × 7 1/4 × 1 1/4".

“Louise Fishman: Paper Louise Tiny Fishman Rock”

ICA - INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART, PHILADELPHIA
PHILADELPHIA
Through August 14
Curated by Ingrid Schaffner

In tandem with an independently organized retrospective at the Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, State University of New York, this hometown survey of Fishman’s fifty-year-long career features the painter’s esteemed large-scale gestural abstractions alongside a selection of intimate studio investigations—an assortment of miniature paintings, sketchbooks, and small sculptures—that share the same physicality and unapologetic emotional punch as her bigger, iconic works. The exhibition’s hinge is Self-Portrait, Fishman’s 1960 self-portrait as a boxer, one of the artist’s engagements with feminism and queer identity. The show promises to reveal the rigorous material research underlying Fishman’s celebrated career, one dedicated to reclaiming the language of Abstract Expressionism, long dominated by men. The accompanying catalogue features contributions by Helaine Posner, Carrie Moyer, and Nancy Princenthal and an interview with the artist by Ingrid Schaffner, curator of the Fifty-Seventh Carnegie International.

Michelle Grabner

Vik Muniz, Sandcastle #10, 2014, digital C-print, 71 × 86 7/8". From the series “Sand Castles,” 2014.

Vik Muniz

HIGH MUSEUM OF ART
ATLANTA
Through May 29
Curated by Arthur Ollman

Best known for his elaborate copies of iconic images from pop culture and the Western art-historical canon made with materials such as garbage, chocolate sauce, and peanut butter, São Paulo–born artist Vik Muniz is now the recipient of a midcareer retrospective, consisting of 120 photographs and three sculptures, dating from 1989, the year of Muniz’s first solo exhibition in New York, to the present day. The show will also include several examples of Muniz’s recent technophilic forays into the microcosmic, including works from “Sand Castles,” 2014, which features blown-up images of castles the artist etched on grains of sand using a focused ion beam, and “Colonies,” 2014, a collection of mandala-like images of cancer cells and bacteria, both created in collaboration with researchers at MIT. A catalogue featuring an essay by the curator and an interview with Muniz by art historian Diana Wechsler accompanies the exhibition.

Brienne Walsh

Walker Evans, Shoppers, Randolph Street, Chicago, 1946, gelatin silver print, 15 1/2 × 12 1/4". © Walker Evans Archive, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

“Walker Evans: Depth of Field”

HIGH MUSEUM OF ART
ATLANTA
June 11 - September 11
Curated by John T. Hill, Heinz Liesbrock, and Brett Abbott

While America fractures under the pressure of the latest presidential election, the High Museum is revisiting a photographic practice that subjected the nation to a brilliantly sensitive aesthetic conscience. Featuring more than 120 black-and-white and color prints, spanning from the 1920s to the 1970s, the show and attendant catalogue will give viewers a chance to revisit the dogged intelligence of a lifetime’s hard poetry. Evans had few peers in his capacity to disclose social relations through images and to coax the slow violence of American life into visibility. Working with Lincoln Kirstein, he learned to amplify the power of this disclosure through sequence. This is hard stuff for a museum to handle, but it remains vital to try. Travels to the Vancouver Art Gallery, Oct. 29, 2016–Jan. 22, 2017.

Robin Kelsey

Yuri Ancarani, Il capo (The Boss), 2010, 35 mm transferred to HD video, color, sound, 15 minutes. From the series “La malattia del ferro (The Malady of Iron),” 2010–12. From “Architecture of Life.”

“Architecture of Life”

BERKELEY ART MUSEUM AND PACIFIC FILM ARCHIVE (BAMPFA)
BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA
Through May 29
Curated by Lawrence Rinder

BAM/PFA celebrates the opening of its new building by Diller Scofidio + Renfro with this epic presentation of more than 250 artifacts that sit at the nexus of art, architecture, and life itself. Encompassing a heterogeneous array of objects drawn from the history of music, science, craft, religion, and experimental design, among other cultural practices, the show and its multiauthored catalogue speak to architecture’s varied connections to “forms of life.” Viewed in the context of DS+R’s remarkable structure, for which the New York–based firm sliced through an old printing plant and fused it to a dramatically foreign form, the exhibition promises to remind us that architecture not only operates to regulate spaces, bodies, and psyches in the service of cultural norms but, like art—and, one hopes, this show—can open up new, critical prospects for encountering the contemporary milieu.

Felicity Scott

“Everywhen: The Eternal Present in Indigenous Art from Australia”

HARVARD ART MUSEUMS
CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS
Through September 18
Curated by Stephen Gilchrist

"Dreamings: The Art of Aboriginal Australia,” held at the Asia Society in New York in 1988, was a key exhibition in demonstrating that Aboriginal art was not “primitive” but modern. This show goes one step further in arguing that Aboriginal art is not modern but contemporary. “Everywhen,” a neologism adopted from anthropologist William Stanner, is a way of taking the Dreaming—the cultural and spiritual worldview of Aborigines—out of the past and placing it in the present. The show includes Pintupi artists such as Mick Namarari Tjapaltjarri, the Anmatyerr Emily Kame Kngwarreye, Sydney photographer Christian Thompson, Brisbane Conceptualist Vernon Ah Kee, and other native Australians. If New Yorker David Smith once made a work called Australia in response to Aboriginal art, and Texan Forrest Bess actually wanted to become an Aborigine, what Gilchrist seeks to prove is that Aboriginal art is not just “everywhen” but belongs everywhere.

Rex Butler