THE 78TH WHITNEY BIENNIAL is full of beautiful, smart, and trenchant art. It unfolds as a series of crisscrossing conversations and exhilarating moments where things simply feel good togetherand yes, everything feels better in the new building. Cauleen Smith’s glittering, handmade banners, emblazoned with poetically mournful slogans in protest of black lives lost to racist violence, announce both the museum’s most inclusive Biennial yet and curators Christopher Y. Lew and Mia Locks’s attunement to injustices that long predate Trump’s win, but that are sure to tragically intensify under his rule. The statement Everything feels better in the new building takes as a given that everything, in general, is worse. The show benefits fromand is burdened byan anxious climate that no one wished for, and it offers some encouragement, if not solace, with its earnest back-to-work
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