previews

  • Donald Judd, untitled, 1960, oil on canvas, 70 × 47 7⁄8". © Judd Foundation/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

    Donald Judd, untitled, 1960, oil on canvas, 70 × 47 7⁄8". © Judd Foundation/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

    “Judd”

    MoMA - The Museum of Modern Art
    11 West 53rd Street
    March 1–July 11, 2020

    Curated by Ann Temkin and Yasmil Raymond with Tamar Margalit and Erica Cooke

    This spring, the sole Donald Judd retrospective in the US in three decades—titled “Judd,” in perfect step with the artist’s trademark directness—will offer many visitors their first chance to see a holistic presentation of the practice that has had such a massive impact on contemporary art and culture at large. Judd’s legacy as a crucial hinge between modernism and its postmedium aftermath has seemingly been exhaustively assessed, but by tracing the whole arc of his practice—with sixty paintings, sculptures, and drawings from his thirty-year career—MoMA promises to explore its radicality and complexity, which Judd’s affiliation with Minimalism, a movement now more or less thoroughly co-opted as design, may have obscured. As contemporary art wrestles with its own radicality and complexity, or lack thereof, there couldn’t be a better time to revisit an artist who doggedly confronted form, presence, and politics, both on the page and in “real space.”

  • Niki de Saint Phalle

    MoMA PS1
    22-25 Jackson Avenue at 46th Avenue
    April 5–September 7, 2020

    Curated by Ruba Katrib

    Florid, bodacious, and unabashed—all words apropos to the work of Niki de Saint Phalle, an aristocratic dropout and unruly visionary. The first exhibition of her work at a New York museum will feature more than one hundred works, including sculpture, prints, and jewelry, as well as documentation of her public works, including original models for and photographs and drawings of Tarot Garden, open to the public since 1998. Inspired by Antoni Gaudí’s Park Güell in Barcelona and Ferdinand Cheval’s Le Palais Idéal in southeastern France, and surely influenced by Simon Rodia’s Watts Towers in Los Angeles, the artist began building out her storied fourteen-acre sculpture park in central Italy in 1978 with a bountiful array of figures from the tarot deck, all rendered in plaster and gleaming mosaic atop of Etruscan ruins.

  • Gerhard Richter, Betty, 1977, oil on wood, 11 3⁄4 × 15 3⁄4".

    Gerhard Richter, Betty, 1977, oil on wood, 11 3⁄4 × 15 3⁄4".

    “Gerhard Richter: Painting After All”

    The Met Breuer
    945 Madison Avenue
    March 4–July 5, 2020

    Curated by Sheena Wagstaff and Benjamin H. D. Buchloh with Brinda Kumar

    This sprawling survey, Richter’s first in the US in seventeen years, will provide an opportunity for an uninitiated generation of American viewers to take stock of the work of the eighty-seven-year-old artist, whose status as a master of conceptually driven painting is, at this point, undeniable. Featuring more than one hundred pieces in a panoply of media (with, as the title indicates, an emphasis on paintings), the exhibition will display work never before seen on this side of the Atlantic, including the series “Cage,” 2006; the four-panel Birkenau, 2014; and Forest, 2005, a twelve-painting suite that will command its own immersive gallery. The show will be accompanied by a comprehensive catalogue with newly commissioned essays by its curators as well as by scholars Briony Fer, Hal Foster, Peter Geimer, and André Rottmann. In our era of political uncertainty and upheaval, a fresh engagement with an artist known for his confrontation of modern history’s darkest episodes seems most timely.

  • “Countryside, The Future”

    Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum | New York
    1071 Fifth Avenue
    February 20–August 14, 2020

    Curated by Rem Koolhaas and Troy Conrad Therrien

    Following his 2014 Venice Biennale project and its stocktaking of architecture’s “global” condition, Koolhaas, with a host of collaborators, takes on another “mutant form of human coexistence”: the countryside. Eighty case studies of the rapid transformation of rural environments across the planet—ambiguously described in press materials as “non-urban”—will appear in the form of films, documents, and paintings, speaking not of our tired romance with bucolic landscapes but of artificial intelligence, automation, genetic engineering, tax incentives, and managerialism. The emergent financialization that haunted Koolhaas's Delirious New York (1978) has spread worldwide, increasingly integrating the “non-urban” into its economic disposition. Given architecture’s territorializing logics, the exhibition prompts us to question the political consequences of a turn to rural environments: What other forms of collective existence or disobedience can be read in the countryside?

  • Jacob Lawrence, From every Southern town migrants left by the hundreds to travel north, 1940–41, casein tempera on hardboard, 12 × 18". From “Vida Americana: Mexican Muralists Remake American Art, 1925–1945.” © The Jacob and Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence Foundation, Seattle/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

    Jacob Lawrence, From every Southern
    town migrants left by the hundreds to travel north,
    1940–41,
    casein tempera on hardboard, 12 × 18". From “Vida Americana:
    Mexican Muralists Remake American Art, 1925–1945.” © The Jacob and Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence Foundation, Seattle/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

    “Vida Americana: Mexican Muralists Remake American Art, 1925–1945”

    Whitney Museum of American Art
    99 Gansevoort Street
    February 14–May 17, 2020

    Curated by Barbara Haskell with Marcela Guerrero, Sarah Humphreville, and Alana Hernandez

    “Let us reject theories anchored in the relativity of ‘NATIONAL ART.’ LET US BECOME UNIVERSAL!” urged David Alfaro Siqueiros in the sole issue of Vida-americana, his magazine dedicated to vanguard culture from the Americas. This namesake exhibition, which will feature nearly two hundred works by more than sixty artists, eschews Siqueiros’s directive in favor of examining the ways in which the three best-known Mexican muralists—José Clemente Orozco, Diego Rivera, and Siqueiros himself—transformed US art during their extended sojourns in the country. By placing examples from the expat output of los tres grandes and their Mexican peers alongside contemporaneous works by US artists, the show will elucidate how figures such as Hideo Noda, Jacob Lawrence, and Ben Shahn drew on the muralists’ methods of visualizing collective history and exposing economic and racial injustice. The catalogue will include eleven essays that add texture to the complex and ongoing dynamics of transnational exchange.

  • Jana Euler

    Artists Space
    11 Cortlandt Alley
    February 21–April 19, 2020

    Curated by Jay Sanders and Jamie Stevens

    In a field as overrun as figurative painting is today, Jana Euler stands apart with a practice that performs and troubles its own entanglement with existing power structures. This is ambitiously ambivalent art, where painterly virtuosity teams with situational irony. Having recently upped her work’s scale, punch, and comedy with paintings of phallic sharks, Euler now turns her attention to the newly relocated Artists Space in TriBeCa. Having followed the institution’s renovation and building process for many months, the artist will present new paintings and sculptures that promise to engage both the materiality of the cast-iron architecture and the reboot’s significance. Euler developed her site-specific scheme in close conversation with curators Jamie Stevens and Jay Sanders, with whom she has previously worked at Cubitt Artists in London and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, respectively.

  • “RACHEL FEINSTEIN: MAIDEN, MOTHER, CRONE”

    The Jewish Museum
    1109 Fifth Avenue
    November 1, 2019–March 22, 2020

    Curated by Kelly Taxter

    While Game of Thrones viewers longed for the petite, fair-haired Daenerys to become a sweet and merciful queen, they instead got their eyelashes singed by this “mother of dragons.” Rachel Feinstein, whose life and fairy-tale work are often mistaken for a Cinderella story, can probably relate—the lightest surface scratch of her darkly surreal tableaux looses ominous multitudes. This November, the Jewish Museum will host the first US survey of Feinstein’s twenty-five-year career, uniting her winter-white grotesques in all their berserk and flamboyant glory with roughly fifty of her installations, drawings, videos, and maquettes, as well as a mammoth swath of panoramic wallpaper and a thirty-three-foot-long wall relief. Feinstein’s sensibility can encompass everything from a Rococo salon to a spectral snowscape: Walt Disney meets Francis Bacon, Fragonard meets the White Walkers. In a world of glib oppositions, it’s significant that there’s no “versus” in Feinstein’s nightmare wonderland. Here, Beauty and the Beast isn’t about genders or genres locked in a duel. It’s about how these non-binary struggles inhabit everyone.