• Arthur Wesley Dow, August Moon, 1905, woodcut print, 5 1/3 x 7 1/2".

    “The Third Mind: American Artists Contemplate Asia, 1860–1989”

    Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
    4525 Oak Street
    July 19, 2013–January 3, 2010

    Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum | New York
    1071 Fifth Avenue
    January 30–April 19, 2009

    Curated by Alexandra Munroe

    “The Third Mind” looks to subvert the narrative of cultural influence’s one-way flow from West to East by focusing on how artists, writers, and filmmakers in the United States have consistently drawn on “Asian” (mainly Japanese, Chinese, and Indian) artistic traditions and religious practices. Curator Alexandra Munroe arranges more than 200 works into seven roughly chronological sections, beginning with pieces by Mary Cassatt and John La Farge, among others, and ending with the likes of Meredith Monk and Bill Viola. The show’s title, referencing a 1965 work by William S. Burroughs and Brion Gysin that recombined textual fragments to form new narratives, evokes the eclecticism that has characterized American appropriations of the Asian ever since Matthew C. Perry landed in Japan.

  • Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Pulse Room, 2006, lightbulbs. Installation view.

    Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

    Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art
    4420 Warwick Boulevard
    February 20–May 3, 2009

    Curated by Christopher Cook

    Mexican-born Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s first solo museum exhibition in the United States will cast his audience as star, presenting five works that evolve in response to the public’s interactions with them. Each of the one hundred hanging lightbulbs in the installation Pulse Room, 2006, blinks at a rate determined by a museumgoer’s heartbeat; two works from his “Shadow Box” series combine the spectator’s visage, displayed on an LCD monitor, with saved footage of hundreds of previous passersby; and in 33 Questions Per Minute, Relational Architecture 5, 2000, the earliest work on view, twenty-one tiny screens flash more than fifty-five billion queries generated by computer software and visitors alike. Lozano- Hemmer’s thoughtful deployment of new media alludes to the registers of human interconnectedness engendered by digital culture: Be prepared to feel both important and lost in the crowd.