Bowie! Degas! Danh Vo! 36 Electrifying Museum Shows to See Across the United States in (Early) 2018
The first three months bring the US debut of "Soul of a Nation," "Art in the Age of the Internet," and a sequel to "Womenhouse."
Here are some of artnet News’s highlights of museum shows opening across the United States in the first three months of 2018:
“Dissent and Desire”
Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston
January 9-April 29, 2018
Sunil Gupta and Charan Singh chronicle contemporary LGBTQ+ life in Delhi, India, via some 40 color documentary photographs. (The show is presented in conjunction with Houston’s annual FotoFest, which this year focuses on new media and photography art from India.)
“Motion Pictures: Photographs by Gjon Mili”
San Diego Museum of Art
Opening January 20, 2018
While his name is not immediately recognizable, the photographs of Gjon Mili graced the pages of Life magazine for decades. Mili was a pioneering photographer in capturing motion using various tools and technologies that redefined the limits of photography.
“Unspeakable: Atlas, Kruger, Walker: Hammer Contemporary Collection”
January 20–May 13, 2018
With a selection of video installations by Charles Atlas, Barbara Kruger, and Kara Walker, “Unspeakable” highlights the ways these contemporary creators deploy visual imagery, montage, and narration as social critique.
“Edmund Clark: The Day the Music Died”
International Center of Photography, New York
January 26–May 6, 2018
A decade’s worth of video and installation work by the British photographer, focusing on the toll of the global war on terror.
“Peter Hujar: Speed of Life”
Morgan Library & Museum, New York
January 26–May 20, 2018
This show brings together more than 100 photographs created by Hujar over the course of his career, serving as a record of the societal shifts in New York City—especially the East Village—as it changed from the Stonewall uprising in 1969 through the 1980s as the AIDS crisis took hold.
“Thomas Cole’s Journey: Atlantic Crossings”
Metropolitan Museum of Art
January 30–May 13, 2018
To mark the 200th anniversary of Thomas Cole’s first trek across the Atlantic, major works by the landscape painter highlight the influence of Cole’s travels on a body of work best known for capturing the American landscape.
“Design in Revolution: A 1960s Odyssey“
Philadelphia Museum of Art
February 3-September 9, 2018
A look at how artists, graphic designers, and architects responded to a tumultuous decade. A trove of rock-and-roll posters is touted as a particular highlight.
“Diego Rodriguez-Warner: Honestly Lying”
Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver
February 2–May 13, 2018
Printmaker Diego Rodriguez-Warner’s new work gives us a tangle of tromp l’oeil gestures and art historical references culled from his life growing up in Denver and training formally as an artist.
“Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power“
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
February 3-April 23, 2018
The blockbuster Tate show arrives in the US, looking at the forces that shaped some 60 artists including Romare Bearden, Noah Purifoy, Martin Puryear, Faith Ringgold, Betye Saar, Alma Thomas, Charles White, and William T. Williams.
“Ten Americans: After Paul Klee”
Phillips Collection, Washington, DC
February 3–May 6
An exhibition celebrating the work of Paul Klee as a pioneer of abstract art, design, and color theory, documenting his lasting imprint on a generation of American artists. Klee’s works are presented in dialogue with artists including William Baziotes, Adolph Gottlieb, Robert Motherwell, and Kenneth Noland.
“Leon Golub: Raw Nerve”
February 6–May 27, 2018
A survey of paintings by the expressionist Leon Golub, including Gigantomachy II, gifted to the museum in 2016, as well as works from throughout this politically inspired artist’s career.
“Art in the Age of the Internet, 1989 to Today”
Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston
February 7–May 20
“Art in the Age of the Internet” aims to be a survey of exactly what the title suggests, looking at the work from a diverse group of artists including Harun Farocki, Nam June Paik, Thomas Ruff, Frances Stark, Hito Steyerl, Martine Syms, and Anicka Yi.
New Museum, New York
February 6–April 15
Alexandra Pirici blends fluid choreography and performance art. Using both live actors and a hologram (!), her work urges viewers to question the notion of what it means to be ‘present,’ especially in the context of a museum.
“Harald Szeemann: Museum of Obsessions”
February 6–May 6
Harald Szeemann is regarded as a pioneering curator in the avant-garde movements of the 1960s and 1970s. For this exhibition, materials culled from the Harald Szeemann Archive at the Getty Research Institute provide a cohesive examination of the super-curator’s many wide-ranging interests.
*This exhibition features a satellite presentation, “Grandfather: A Pioneer Like Us,” on view at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA) from February 4 to April 22, 2018.
“Danh Vo: Take My Breath Away”
February 9–May 9, 2018
This winter, the Guggenheim has the first American survey of the Vietnam-born Vo, whose work reflects on the influence of US materialism and military force on Southeast Asia.
“Jasper Johns: Something Resembling Truth”
Broad Museum, Los Angeles
February 10-May 13, 2018
A major tribute to the famed neo-Dada, proto-Pop artist, via some 120 important works, in a show co-organized with the Royal Academy in London.
“Degas: A Passion for Perfection”
Denver Art Museum
February 11‒May 20, 2018
The DAM charts the course of the master Impressionist’s 60-year career, demonstrating his unique ability to capture the changing city around him. The more than 100 works include bronze sculptures, pastels, paintings, and prints that demonstrate his fondness for experimentation.
“Tarsila do Amaral: Inventing Modern Art in Brazil”
Museum of Modern Art
February 11–June 3, 2018
In keeping with the boom in Brazilian modernism, a major exhibition exploring the work of modernist painter Tarsila do Amaral lands in New York this winter, exposing new audiences to the colorful and radical abstraction that helped define the Neo-Concrete and abstract movements in 1960s Brazil.
“Brand New: Art and the Commodity in the 1980s”
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Park, Washington, DC
February 14-May 13, 2018
More than 150 artworks by 66 artists including Ashley Bickerton, General Idea, Jenny Holzer, and Jeff Koons, exploring the way that commerce infiltrated art—and vice versa—in the 1980s.
“Figuring History: Robert Colescott, Kerry James Marshall, Mickalene Thomas”
Seattle Art Museum
February 15–May 13
A three-artist showcase that promises “compelling perspectives on Black culture and representation in an ever changing social and political landscape.” Colescott, Marshall, and Thomas all create large-scale tableaux that question history and reinterpret the imagery of American identity.
“The Words of Others: León Ferrari and Rhetoric in Times of War”
Pérez Art Museum Miami
February 16-August 12, 2018
A look at the “literary collages” of the important Argentine artist, including a live performance of his 1967 experimental anti-Vietnam theater piece, Palabras ajenas (The Words of Others). (The show was originally a star of the programming around “Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA.”)
“Howardena Pindell: What Remains to be Seen”
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
February 24–May 20, 2018
The first major survey of multidisciplinary of Howardena Pindell traces her almost 50 years of painting, photography, and performance. In the aftermath of a car accident in 1979, Pindell’s work first began to veer away from strictly two-dimensional works on canvas. Since then, it has continued to cross boundaries and mix media.
“Klimt and Schiele: Drawn”
Museum of Fine Arts Boston
February 25–May 28
To mark the 100th anniversary of the deaths of both Klimt and Schiele in 1918, a selection of drawings by both will come to the MFA on loan from the Albertina in Vienna. In this exhibition, 60 drawings by the two men will be juxtaposed, highlighting the similarities between them—in broaching the conventional norms for portraiture—and the stark differences in figuration and practice.
“Mirroring China’s Past: Emperors and Their Bronzes”
Art Institute of Chicago
February 25-May 13, 2018
Treasures from the Palace Museum in Beijing, the Shanghai Museum, and private collections supplement the Art Institute of Chicago’s own collection, in a sweeping show exploring Chinese bronzes of the second and first millennia BC. It claims to be the first exhibition to explore the material in depth.
“David Bowie is”
March 2–July 15
The blockbuster exhibition honoring Ziggy Stardust is making its final stop in New York City, after a five-year run paying tribute to the singular artist David Bowie. The show brings together some 400 objects drawn primarily from the David Bowie Archive, including custom-made costumes, handwritten lyric sheets, sketches for album covers, and more.
“Grant Wood: American Gothic and Other Fables”
Whitney Museum of American Art
March 2–June 10, 2018
Perhaps one of the most recognizable paintings of the 20th century, Grant Wood’s portrait of stone-faced farmers comes to the Whitney this spring. Despite the ubiquity of American Gothic, Wood’s oeuvre expands far beyond the single painting he is best known for. This show amasses works ranging from decorative objects to Impressionist oil paintings, and investigates the artist who gave us this specific depiction of Americana.
“Zoe Leonard: Survey”
Whitney Museum of American Art
March 2-June 10, 2018
The first large-scale overview of Leonard’s work in a US museum gives an overview of her wide-ranging concerns, which often stem from photography.
“Sublime Seas: John Akomfrah and J.M.W. Turner”
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
March 3–September 16, 2018
For the US debut of John Akomfrah’s three-channel video installation Vertigo Sea, the Ghana-born British artist selected J.M.W. Turner’s painting The Deluge as a counterpoint.
“Peacock in the Desert: The Royal Arts of Jodhpur, India”
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
March 4-August 19, 2018
Some 250 treasures make their first-ever appearance outside of the royal collections for which they were made, chronicling four fertile centuries of artistic creation in the kingdom of Marwar-Jodhpur, in India’s northwestern state of Rajasthan.
National Museum of Women in the Arts
March 9–May 28
Four decades after Miriam Schapiro and Judy Chicago erected the famous installation Womanhouse, a project devoted to highlighting the oft-overlooked role of women in the domestic sphere, the NMWA presents “Women House,” conceived of as a sequel. This rendition brings together a fresh intergenerational group of artists to comment and question “the plurality of artists’ views on the home.”
“Marc Camille Chaimowicz: Your Place or Mine…”
Jewish Museum, New York
March 16–August 5, 2018
Marc Camille Chaimowicz (b.1947) became known as a genre-defying multidisciplinary artist in the 1970s. For his first solo show in the US, the Jewish Museum brings together works in sculpture, design, painting, collage, and video.
“Allen Ruppersberg: Intellectual Property (1968–2018)”
Walker Art Center
March 17–July 29, 2018
For the first time in almost three decades, the conceptual artist Allen Ruppersberg is the subject of a major US retrospective. Ruppersberg practice is rooted in language and American vernacular, especially as it is used in popular entertainment.
“Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body (1300–Now)”
March 21-July 22, 2017
The Met Breuer explores the history of making life-like or near life-like sculpture from Donatello to Duane Hansen, via 120 wide-ranging works of art or art-like things like effigies, reliquaries, mannequins, and anatomical models.
“Cult of the Machine”
de Young Museum, San Francisco
March 24–August 12, 2018
Works by artists including Charles Demuth, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Charles Sheeler evince the geometric lines and an urban aesthetic that reflected the increasing modernization of the Machine Age, as technology and factory-lines became de rigeur in cities across the world.
National Gallery of Art
March 25-July 1, 2018
Boasting that it is the “first exhibition devoted to the famed post-impressionist’s portraits,” the NGA’s show unites some 60 works drawn from collections around the world.
“City and Cosmos: The Arts of Teotihuacan”
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
March 25, 2018–July 15, 2018
Monumental sculptures and buried offerings recently excavated from the three main pyramids of the ancient city of Teotihuacan: the Pyramids of the Sun, the Moon, and the Feathered Serpent.
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