Current and upcoming Whitney exhibits
With 75 artists spread over four floors, you’re bound to find works that make you go Meh and others that make you go Wow at the Whitney Biennial. For our money, you should keep a lookout for Nicole Eisenman’s monumental sculpture blowing smoke out of its ass, Josh Kline’s photos that literally weep over the current state of America, Calvin Marcus’s slacker-primitive paintings, and Diane Simpson’s sculpture exploring the heretofore little-known connection between art deco and samurai aesthetics. As to what you might get out of the show as a whole, your mileage may vary depending on your tastes.
For its latest installation of its permanent collection, the Whitney choses artworks from the first half of the 20th century, a period which saw the rise of the United States as a superpower, and organizes them around five themes: Family and community, work, home, the spiritual and the nation.
During the 1960s and ’70s, a group of painters began to use bold, saturated hues, employing what was then a new medium: acrylic pigment. Colorfield, hard-edged abstraction and Op Art were among the genres that emerged as a result, along with a neo-Fauvist approach to figurative Expressionism, whose adherents notably included a number women and African-Americans exploring gender and race in their work. Drawn on the Whitney’s collection, this show re-visits this colorful era in postmodern art.