ArtArt shows to see this spring: Bjork, TV is TV, The Nu-Mu Triennial
Spring is almost here and it's time to look ahead to all the cultural happenings coming up once winter has thawed. These are the some art shows we're looking forward to seeing.
The arrival of spring means a whole new season of big art events opening around the world. From biennials to triennials to art fairs and all the little guys in-between, here are some of the shows to see this spring.
January 29–June 21
at Nam June Paik Art Center (Gyeonggi-do, Korea)
Nam June Paik was a pioneering wizard at the forefront of digital media, futzing with cathode rays and electrical distortions in televisions as early as 1963. The Paik-Abe Video Synthesizer—a seven-channel synthesizer that could edit video in real-time, created for WGBH-TV in 1969—has been newly restored by co-creator Shuya Abe and will be on display after the four-year process. Paik's "Experimental TV" and "Robot" series, some of the earliest examples of video installation using televisions, will be accompanied by work from peers including David Atwood, Joseph Beuys, and Ira Schneider.
February 7–July 12
at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art (New Paltz, NY)
Videofreex is a "collective of artists, storytellers and activists"—renegades of counterculture armed with newly portable video equipment that emerged in the 1960s. From 1969 to 1978, they documented performances, festivals, and political demonstrations; they also became informational advocates for the new medium and emergent media community. The Samuel Dorsky Museum rolls out newly restored video, ephemera, photographs, and the Videofreex' equipment (most of which was gifted by CBS in 1969 to create their seminal "Subject to Change" television program).
February 20–April 30
Pratt Manhattan Gallery (New York)
Franklin Furnace, founded by Martha Wilson in 1976 to support and preserve art that lacked institutional support, moved its archive to Pratt Institute at the end of 2014. To celebrate the merger, and the culmination of a traveling exhibition on Wilson's own artwork, archived artists' books and ephemeral projects from Franklin Furnace's first 30 years will be made available at Pratt. If this treasure trove isn't enough, Wilson's notebooks are preserved at Fales Library, NYU, and Participant Inc on the Lower East Side has organized a week-long series of performances at the end of February.
February 25–May 24
New Museum (New York)
This third iteration of the Triennial focuses on the social and psychological effects of contemporary digital culture and their manifestations. Most of the works have been commissioned specifically for the exhibition, riffing on personas as disguises or counterparts; the hesitation toward monetized browsing; or the potential of media-oriented activism. Considerations of "newfound freedoms and threats" bleed into extensive programming including performances, panels, and even the publication of a book of poetry.
February 27–April 19
Kunstmuseum Bonn (Bonn, Germany)
Videonale decided its 30th birthday was the perfect time to introduce a theme to their biannual, international platform for emergent video and time-based art. "The Call of the Wild" welcomes alien or unknown arenas where video confronts aesthetic, cultural, political, and social issues. "Friends of Videonale" will also pull out thirty throwbacks from the online archive for the occasion.
February 27–August 2
Haus der Kunst (Munich)
The "Cells" series—self-contained installations that occupied Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010) for the last twenty years of her life—was the artist's rendition of the pain that accompanies trauma. Objects, drawings, sculptures, fabric, and furniture render a psychological cross-section of her past. With thirty of her 62 total environs, this will be the most extensive exploration of Bourgeois' inner sanctum to date.
Pier 92 & 94 (New York)
The 197 participants from 28 countries participating in this year's Armory Show are established and vetted, be it blue-chip mega-dealer or adolescent venture. The Contemporary wing (Pier 94) hosts galleries from the Middle East, North Africa, and the Mediterranean in the 6th incarnation of Armory Focus (with a two-day symposium to boot); a handful of not-for-profit institutions; and the second edition of Armory Focus, a curated selection of young galleries showing one or two artists. "Historically significant" 20th century artworks (and some peace and quiet) can be found in the Modern wing (Pier 92).
Waterfront New York Tunnel (New York)
Moving Image Fair is one of the few free events during Armory Week, and it's one that encourages videos, projections, video sculptures and installations to be "appreciated on their own terms." It's the only fair that shows exclusively film and video-based content.
March 6–May 13
Guggenheim (New York)
The title of this exhibition is a composite of two recent additions to Paul Chan's bag of tricks: the MacGyver-esque "Nonprojection" series of video projections powered by conductive shoes; and a series of erotic fiction dubbed New Lovers, released by Chan's publishing platform Badlands Unlimited. An obscure new work, described by Chan as "sculptural animation," will also be on view.
March 7–May 24
Pinned as the first US survey of Steyerl's work, Artists Space provides an overview of the artist's interest in the politics of image and information circulation, and the impact of "global communication technologies." Eight videos from 2004 onward, one newly-commissioned lecture performance, and an online compilation of Steyerl's writing consider late capitalism's interactions with mass culture and digital, abstract spaces.
March 8–June 7
MoMA (New York)
MoMA beckons with a sonic journey through Björk's twenty-year career, accompanied by costumes, instruments, and objects used to animate eight albums worth of music. In addition to a room streaming a retrospective of her music videos, there will be two installations (one of which is interactive) to further envelop the viewer in a cocoon of sound.
March 8–June 28
Queens Museum (New York)
"After Midnight" compares Indian art produced in 1947, the year India gained independence and embraced the avant-garde, to works that appeared fifty years later in blockbuster exhibitions in America and the UK. Contemporary work made after 1997 plays devil's advocate, critiquing globalization's effects on the nation, in an attempt to redefine aesthetic stereotypes and "the idea of India itself."
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (Hong Kong)
Art Basel's newest stepchild is in its third year of introducing collectors and visitors to contemporary Asian art. Outside of traditional booths with art for sale, Art Basel Hong Kong offers several components unique to the occasion: the "Insights" section presents exhibitions made for the fair from galleries in Asia or the Asia-Pacific region; the "Discoveries" section prioritizes new and site-specific work produced by one or two artists; and "Encounters" gives visitors the opportunity to experience large-scale sculpture or installations.
April 3–August 29
Brooklyn Museum (New York)
Despite Jean-Michel Basquiat's attention to writing and adoration of the doodle, "The Unknown Notebooks" is the first investigation of his sketchbooks. The 160 pages on display will link his personal observations and sketches, influenced by the dynamics of New York's culture and politics in the 1980s, to large-scale works and drawings. These pages trace the self-taught development of his iconic imagery and his range of reference.
April 18–August 2
Contemporary Art Museum Houston(Houston)
Marilyn Minter's paintings, photographs, and videos are a piercing critique of the impulses and compulsions associated with physical beauty. "Pretty/Dirty" hosts work made between 1976 and 2013, tracking her engagement with the manipulative power of desire and fantasized femininity.
Brooklyn Historical Society
Each day has a different roster of participants gathered to sell zines: cheaply sold, self-published books, pamphlets, or magazines. Over 150 writers, artists, and publishers will be on hand, accompanied by educational workshops and panel discussions on Saturday.
May 9–November 22
Various venues (Venice, Italy)
This biannual art event is a lot like Epcot in Disney World: countries apply to exhibit their best artistic representative in large pavilions in hopes of realizing ambitious projects and global attention. The 62 countries participating this year are in dialogue with "The Parliament of Forms", an exhibition curated by the 2015 Biennale's artistic director Okwui Enwezor. The exhibition will filter "the current state of things" and "the appearance of things" into three categories—"Liveness: On Epic Duration," "Garden of Disorder," and "Capital: A Live Reading"—to consider tactics for engagement with and digestion of art in this tumultuous reality.
FEBRUARY 12–MARCH 13
Marian Goodman Gallery (New York)
FEBRUARY 11–april 2
Aperture Gallery (New York)
FEBRUARY 12–MARCH 21
Morgan Lehman Gallery (New York)
MARCH 24–JUNE 28
Museo Nacional del Prado (Madrid)
MARCH 25–JULY 13
Grand Palais (Paris)
MARCH 26–JUNE 28
Studio Museum (New York)
APRIL 5–AUGUST 9
Museum of Fine Arts Boston (Boston)
APRIL 10–JULY 5
Museum Folkwang (Essen, Germany)
APRIL 11–MAY 16
OHWOW (Los Angeles)
APRIL 18–JUNE 14
Johnson Museum of Art (Ithaca)
Baltimore Museum of Art (Baltimore)
APRIL 24–SEPTEMBER 14
Leopold Museum (Vienna)
APRIL 28–SEPTEMBER 27
Museum of Art and Design (New York)
Whitney Museum of American Art (New York)
Cover image: Juliana Huxtable, New Museum