• Taryn Simon, The Central Intelligence Agency, Art, CIA Original Headquarters Building, Langley, Virginia, 2003/2007, color photograph. From series “An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar,” 2007.

    “Taryn Simon: Photographs and Texts”

    Helsinki City Art Museum
    Kluuvi Gallery Unioninkatu 28 B
    April 9–May 6, 2012

    Milwaukee Art Museum
    700 N. Art Museum Drive
    September 22, 2011–January 1, 2012

    Moscow House of Photography / Multimedia Art Museum
    Ostozhenka 16
    January 20–February 19, 2012

    Curated by Lisa Hostetler

    With the tenacious sleuthing sensibility of an investigative reporter and a keen eye for the resonantly offbeat, Taryn Simon has spent the past decade turning her lens toward the forbidden and the forgotten, producing documentary photographs paired with concise factual texts. This midcareer survey will focus on four of the artist’s most ambitious projects, including her 2007 series “An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar,” which led viewers behind the scenes at normally inaccessible sites—nuclear-waste-storage facilities, cryonic units, CIA headquarters—and “Contraband,” 2010, for which she spent five days shooting items confiscated or detained at New York’s JFK International Airport. With its aggregation of the exotic (dried deer penis) and the mundane (a plastic pitcher jammed full of salami), the latter series encapsulates Simon’s operative fascination: the curious stories that reside in the material facts of things.

  • Neo Rauch, Das Blaue (The Blue), 2006, oil on canvas, 9' 101⁄8“ x 13' 103⁄8”.

    4th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art

    Moscow International Biennale of Contemporary Art
    September 23–October 30, 2011

    Curated by Peter Weibel

    The central exhibition in this biennial will span two venues—the gentrified industrial premises of the new ARTPLAY Design Center and the palatial galleries of the TsUM (supported by its namesake, one of Moscow’s poshest department stores). According to curator Peter Weibel, the show’s title, “Rewriting Worlds,” twists Marx’s famous directive to not interpret the world but to change it: Weibel, for his part, is suggesting that it is precisely through a reinterpretation of the world that change happens. And with this biennial, featuring eighty artists—among them Kader Attia, Bernadette Corpora- tion, Elena Elagina and Igor Makarevich, Susan Hiller, Isaac Julien, Neo Rauch, and, tentatively, Ai Weiwei—from twenty countries, Moscow is allowing in a wider world than ever before. There will also be numerous related special projects, mostly by local curators, spreading beyond Russia’s capital to Yekaterinburg, Nizhniy Novgorod, and select interna- tional sites, too.