Biennials, cremated canvases, German faces, cashmere sportswear, sculptural tour de force, fashionable shoes, and an iPhone app comprise this week’s roundup:
- 2010: Whitney Biennial will open at the Whitney Museum of American Art on Thursday, February 25. Art21’s Ellen Gallagher (Season 3) is one of fifty-five artists selected by curators Francesco Bonami and Gary Carrion-Murayari for this year’s show. She was also included in the 1995 Biennial, and had a solo exhibition at the museum in 2005. This time Gallagher has partnered with Dutch artist Edgar Cleijne on a film installation that includes sculptural construction and silk-screened panels. Gallagher recently told The Providence Journal: “In some ways, it feels very similar to my first Biennial. I mean, it’s a huge honor for any artist to be invited to participate in a Whitney Biennial. In a way, it’s a little like being nominated for an Academy Award. You feel this wonderful sense of validation.” 2010 is on view through May 30.
- Shrew’d: The Smart & Sassy Survey of American Women Artists, a biennial invitational at the University of Nebraska’s Sheldon Museum of Art, focuses on the work of artists who question social norms of representation in art, pop culture and daily life. According to the website, the survey “takes a critical feminist perspective on society’s mixed messages about assertive women, which describes what some contemporary women artists have had to become.” Carrie Mae Weems (Season 5), whose work is included in the exhibition, will lecture at the museum on March 30. Shrew’d continues through May 9. (Watch a slideshow here.)
- Pure Beauty is the largest retrospective exhibition ever mounted in Spain that is dedicated to Season 5 artist John Baldessari. The Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona display features more than 130 works created between 1962 and 2009. Curated by Leslie Jones, Jessica Morgan and Bartomeu Marí, the exhibition brings together many of the artist’s most relevant works, such as God Nose (1965); Cremation Project (1970), which marked Baldessari’s burning of all the canvases he had produced between May 1953 and March 1966, accompanied by its corresponding urn, commemorative plaque and death notice published in the San Diego Union newspaper; Commissioned Paintings (1969); and Baldessari Sings LeWitt (1972), featuring the artist singing every one of Sol LeWitt’s thirty-five conceptual statements to the music of different popular tunes, such as “Singing in the Rain” and the American national anthem. Pure Beauty (titled for one of Baldessari’s early works) will travel to the Los Angeles County Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
- German Faces — an exhibition that draws from a long-term body of work by Season 2 artist Collier Schorr — is on view at Modern Art Gallery in London through March 20. Every summer for the past 18 years, Schorr has traveled to southern Germany, working in and around the small town of Schwäbisch Gmünd. She used the landscapes of artists Sander, Kiefer, Beuys, Baselitz and Chagall as a ground on which to play out imagined and inherited histories of Germany and her own Jewish heritage. Schorr’s images are further influenced by reportage, fictional films, and portrait photography. The installation of this project, completely arranged by the artist, includes photographs, drawings, collages and videos. Schorr was recently named “Artist of the Week” by The Guardian.
- Through April 23, works by Season 2 artist Maya Lin are on view at The Arts Club of Chicago. The exhibition includes wood constructed land formations and bodies of water, wire wall pieces, drawings, pastel rubbings, and a piece created specifically for the city. According to Chicago Art Magazine, “Maya Lin’s show is a sculptural tour de force, which will surely be counted among the year’s best.”
- Art21 artists Vija Celmins (Season 2) and Robert Ryman (Season 4) have inspired recent runway fashions. Payless ShoeSource tapped designer Lela Rose for a special fall shoe collection that debuted during New York Fashion Week. According to CNN Money, “The collection’s inspiration stems from the textural and ‘craggy’ landscapes of the moon and earth, and the graphite works by Vija Celmins featuring lunar floors and nighttime skies.” Huffington Post reports that designer Jason Wu’s fall collection was inspired by Ryman’s monochromatic canvases, resulting in minimalist “sportswear with a highly civilized twist and turn.”
- Works by Barbara Kruger (Season 1) and Lari Pittman (Season 4) are featured in the exhibition Disquieted at the Portland Art Museum. The show explores our social condition and how living artists have responded, challenging our preconceptions and exposing our vulnerability in turbulent times. The exhibition boasts its own iPhone application that includes video interviews with artists; commentary from curators and educators; and a map so visitors can easily locate featured works of art. Disquieted is on view through May 16.