Prospect.4 Curator Brings in Some Big Names for Advice
William Cordova, Wangechi Mutu, and Ebony G. Patterson join the triennial's council.
Mark your calendars: Prospect.4, the fourth edition of New Orleans’s international art festival, will welcome visitors in November 2017, just in time for the 300th anniversary of the founding of New Orleans. The triennial’s new artistic director, Trevor Schoonmaker, has promised that it will be particularly global in scope. To guarantee this, he’s announced a newly-formed “artistic directors council” for the event, featuring some big names as advisers.
Artists William Cordova, Wangechi Mutu, and Ebony G. Patterson will join Miranda Lash of the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky; Omar Lopez-Chahoud of Miami’s Untitled art fair; Filipa Oliveira of the Fórum Eugénio de Almeida, Lisbon; and Zoe Whitley of the Tate, London, on the council.
“These are people Trevor wanted to work with and who he trusts and admires, and has deep friendships with,” Prospect New Orleans executive director Brooke Davis Anderson told artnet News of the new group in an e-mail. (Schoonmaker curated, for instance, Mutu’s 2013–14 travelling museum survey, “Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey.”)
The council actually came on board in the fall of 2015, and was originally conceived of as a “sounding board” to help Schoonmaker take a truly global approach to the project, Anderson explained. “I also had a real desire to integrate them into our project more deeply… not just to be advisers, but to participate in a variety of ways, to go the distance with us,” she added.
The responsibilities of the council, which will span the full three years of planning Prospect.4 requires, will include recommending artists for inclusion in the exhibition, working on the accompanying catalogue publication, and participating in public programming during the Prospect.4 opening.
What exactly all this will look like isn’t yet clear, but Schoonmaker gives a hint about what he has in mind a press release. “The rich diversity of New Orleans has developed over a long history of colonization, the trans-Atlantic slave trade, waves of migration and displacement, and Gulf Coast trade routes buoyed by the city’s position as the American South’s largest port,” said Prospect New Orleans’s, in a statement. “Artists in Prospect.4 will explore many of these histories and themes and how they relate to contemporary geographical and cultural settings around the world.”
Though November 2017 may still seem a long way off, Anderson was quick to point out that the event is beginning to take shape. “Our board of directors and staff are already working tirelessly on Prospect.4,” she said in a statement. “Artists are making site visits and our many partnerships are being confirmed.”
Prospect.4 will be on view November 11, 2017–February 25, 2018.
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