It’s only Tuesday, but already it’s shaping up to be a thrilling week for David Hammons fans, who learned yesterday that the Whitney Museum in New York is looking into permanently displaying a new work by the elusive artist along the Hudson River, near its Renzo Piano–designed home. And that is not all that Hammons is quietly working on.
Next month, Hammons will become the latest artist to curate a show as part of the Museum of Modern Art’s ongoing “Artist’s Choice” series, which has over the years offered Ellsworth Kelly, Chuck Close, and others the chance to organize exhibitions of works in the museum’s collection. Hammons’s exhibition, which opens on October 7, is called “Charles White—Leonardo da Vinci. Curated by David Hammons” and will take place about a year ahead of MoMA’s planned White retrospective. This being Hammons, details are very scarce.
The exhibition includes a fairly unusual loan, according to a brief listing on MoMA’s website: a 16th-century brush and ink drawing by Leonardo Da Vinci lent by Queen Elizabeth II from the British Royal Collection. Also included will be White’s 1973 painting Black Pope (Sandwich Board Man), which is owned by MoMA and features a black man who appears to be a walking advertiser and a religious icon at the same time. The museum’s statement also notes that White was one of Hammons’s teachers. Asked for comment, the museum said more information about the show will be released next week.
Hammons has served as a curator before, putting together a 2014 show at Tilton Gallery in New York, which paired Ed Clark’s paintings with contemporaries like Donald Judd and Yayoi Kusama, and “The Fish Hook That Jumps,” a show of work by Andrew Castrucci that Hammons organized with Steve Cannon at Tribes Gallery in 2001.