ARTnews in Brief

ARTnews in Brief: Cleveland Museum of Art Hires New Associate Curator of Contemporary Art—and More from October 18, 2019

Bárbara Wagner & Benjamin de Burca, RISE (still), 2018, 2K video, 20 minutes.

Bárbara Wagner and Benjamin de Burca’s short film RISE (2018) will travel to the Museo Jumex in Mexico City later this month.


Friday, October 18

Cleveland Museum of Art Hires New Associate Curator of Contemporary Art
The Cleveland Museum of Art has named Nadiah Rivera Fellah as its new associate curator of contemporary art; she’ll start in early November. At the museum, Fellah will work under Emily Liebert, its curator of contemporary art. Prior to her new role, she has worked in various roles at the Newark Museum in New Jersey since 2015.

Thursday, October 17

Protestors to Target MoMA Board Member at Action
Last week, a group called New Sanctuary Coalition circulated an open letter to the Museum of Modern Art in New York and board trustee Larry Fink decrying alleged connections to mass incarceration through financial services they rely on and announcing plans for a protest on Friday. Now, another group called the Center for Public Democracy has announced a protest for Monday against Steven Tananbaum, an ARTnews Top 200 Collector and a MoMA trustee whom the organization has alleged can be connected to Puerto Rico’s debt crisis. “While this board member has poured money into the arts, his hedge fund has invested heavily in a variety of Puerto Rican bonds, including bonds from COFINA the government-owned corporation that issues Puerto Rican bonds to pay and refinance the public debt, and the electrical company PREPA,” the organization said in the release. The protest, scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on Monday, is intended to urge MoMA to remove Tananbaum from its board. —Alex Greenberger

Bárbara Wagner and Benjamin de Burca Work Will Travel to Museo Jumex
A video by the artist duo Bárbara Wagner and Benjamin de Burca that is currently included in the inaugural Toronto Biennial is set to go on view at Mexico City’s Museo Jumex. The work, titled RISE (2018), was commissioned by the Art Gallery of York University, one of the biennial’s venues, and was made in partnership with R.I.S.E. (Reaching Intelligent Souls Everywhere). The Toronto-based group’s young poets, musicians, and rappers, many of whom are first- and second-generation members of the Caribbean diaspora in Canada, are the focus of Wagner and de Burca’s film, which features them singing and rapping in various stations throughout Toronto’s subway system. At Museo Jumex, the piece will be the subject of a one-work show that runs from October 31 to February 9. —Maximilíano Durón

Jordan Nassar, 'Tired of Forgiving,' 2018, hand embroidered cotton on cotton

Jordan Nassar, Tired of Forgiving, 2018, hand embroidered cotton on cotton.


James Cohan Gallery Now Represents Jordan Nassar
The New York-based James Cohan gallery has added artist Jordan Nassar to its roster. The gallery will present Nassar’s hand-embroidered works at the ADAA Art Show in New York in February, and it will stage a solo exhibition of his work in September 2020. Nassar’s pieces, which explore notions of home, are influenced by traditional Palestinian embroideries. His art has been exhibited at the Whitney Museum and the Katonah Museum of Art in New York, Anat Ebgi in Los Angeles, Exile Gallery in Berlin, and elsewhere. A new body of work, which he created in collaboration with craftswomen in the city of Ramallah, features vibrant landscapes within geometric grids. “I like to discuss these landscapes as versions of Palestine as they exist in the minds of the diaspora, who have never been there and can never go there. They are the Palestine I heard stories about growing up, half-made of imagination,” Nassar has said.

Tang Museum Receives $1 M. for Collections Endowment, Publications Program
The Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York, has received two major gifts totaling $1 million. The Ellsworth Kelly Foundation has given $500,000 to support the museum’s research, scholarship, and digital access to its permanent collection, which comprises over 16,700 pieces. And the photographer, curator, and collector Jack Shear has pledged an additional $500,000 for the museum to produce catalogues and other publications around its exhibitions. Michael Orr, Skidmore’s dean of faculty and vice president for academic affairs, said in a statement, “This generosity reflects the Tang Teaching Museum’s leadership among academic museums in integrating contemporary art with scholarship across disciplines, and in sharing that research on campus and with the world at large.”

Wednesday, October 16

Stephen Westfall Joins Alexandre Gallery in New York
Stephen Westfall, who’s known for richly colored hard-edged abstractions that are inspired by a wide array of historical precedents, now shows in New York with Alexandre Gallery, the Midtown Manhattan specialist in American art that also represents Lois Dodd and the estates of Will Barnet and Neil Welliver. Westfall had previously been repped in the city by Lennon, Weinberg, Inc., which went into private practice earlier this year after more than 30 years in business, operating first in SoHo, then Chelsea. The artist’s first solo show with Alexandre will take place next fall. New Yorkers who cannot wait that long to see some Westfall should take the N or W train over to the 30th Avenue subway station in Astoria, Queens, where he recently unveiled permanent installations in laminated glass that were commissioned by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. —Andrew Russeth

Installation view of Ugo Rondinone's exhibition a wall . seven windows . four people . three trees . some clouds . one sun . In memory of John Giorno. The love of my life. Ugo, 2019, at Kamel Mennour, Paris.

Installation view of Ugo Rondinone’s exhibition “a wall . seven windows . four people . three trees . some clouds . one sun . In memory of John Giorno. The love of my life. Ugo,” 2019, at Kamel Mennour, Paris.


Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Ugo Rondinone Pays Tribute to John Giorno in Paris Show
An exhibition on view now in Paris at Kamel Mennour gallery is dedicated to John Giorno, the famed artist and poet who died last week at age 82. Ugo Rondinone, Giorno’s husband and partner of more than 20 years, is the one paying homage. A dedication for Rondinone’s solo show, spread across the gallery’s three Paris locations, reads: “In memory of John Giorno. The love of my life.” At one location, a Rondinone sculpture that reads “WE ARE POEMS” alludes to Giorno’s idiosyncratic experiments with text by making reference to his work.

Public Art Group Raises Funds for U.S. Asylum Seekers
The Immigrant Yarn Project, a collaborative public art initiative founded in 2017 by artist and activist Cindy Weil, will donate proceeds from sales of 25 works to two nonprofits: the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services and the International Rescue Committee, both of which work with refugees and other immigrants in the United States. Sculptural totems, which are made from yarn and fibrous materials and were exhibited at San Francisco’s Fort Point National Historic Site earlier this year, are available for purchase on the IYP’s website. Weil said in a statement, “Art can do more than just reference social injustice, it can become a physical act of social good. … By putting money towards the organizations providing frontline services and support to immigrants in peril at the border and across the country, we aim to make a positive impact.”

Trisha Brown, Lightfall, 1963, performed at Concert of Dance #4, Judson Memorial Church, New York, by Trisha Brown and Steve Paxton.

Photographic documentation of Trisha Brown’s Lightfall, 1963, which was performed Judson Memorial Church by Brown and Steve Paxton, was included in the MoMA’s Bessie Award–winning exhibition “Judson Dance Theater: The Work Is Never Done.”


MoMA Exhibition Wins Bessie Award
The Museum of Modern Art’s exhibition “Judson Dance Theater: The Work Is Never Done” has won a 2019 Bessie Award for outstanding revival. The show, which ran from September 2018 to February 2019, focused on the choreographers and artists whose collaborations at the Judson Memorial Church in New York’s Greenwich Village resulted in innovative and disruptive new art forms. The Bessie Awards lauded the exhibition—which included photography, sculpture, film, and live performances—for “placing the work in the larger social and political context in which it was made, and giving it new relevance in the current moment.”

DC Moore Gallery Adds Estate of Stephen Mueller to Roster
The New York–based DC Moore Gallery now represents the estate of Stephen Mueller jointly with Texas Gallery in Houston. Mueller is best known for vibrant abstract canvases in the Color Field tradition that incorporate a variety of influences, from Mexican pottery to non-Western religious traditions. Works by Mueller, who died in 2011 at the age of 63, can be found in the collections of the Whitney Museum in New York, the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, the Denver Museum of Art, and other institutions. An exhibition of Mueller’s later works is currently on view in DC Moore’s project gallery through November 9.

Marie Karlberg, 'Limited Moves,' performance at Tramps, London, 2017"

Marie Karlberg, Limited Moves, performance at Tramps, London, 2017.


Monday, October 14, 2019

Gavlak Gallery Moves to New Spaces in Los Angeles and Palm Beach
After closing her operations in Los Angeles and Palm Beach, Florida, for part of the summer, dealer Sarah Gavlak is reopening her galleries in two new exhibition spaces this fall. Gavlak will move from Hollywood to a 4,500-square-foot location, complete with a private showroom and a separate project space, in Downtown Los Angeles. It’s part of an arts complex that also includes Susanne Vielmetter and Nicodim Gallery. The inaugural exhibition in the L.A. venue, which opens October 26, will feature works by Lisa Anne AuerbachMarilyn MinterBetty Tompkins, and others. In Palm Beach, Gavlak will take up residence at the Royal Poinciana Plaza shopping center. The Florida outpost will open in November with a solo presentation by Candida Alvarez.

NADA Miami Names 2019 International Gallery Prize Recipient
The Paris-based gallery Bonny Poon is the winner of the fourth annual NADA Miami International Gallery Prize, which gives enterprises outside the United States the opportunity to exhibit at the NADA Miami fair. Bonny Poon will present works by Marie Karlberg, Ilya Lipkin, Kunle F. Martins, and Julian Tromp in its debut presentation at the fair, which runs from December 5 to 8. In a statement, gallery cofounder and director Bonny Poon said, “At a time when fairs can be financially difficult, the International Gallery Prize is a vital and urgent reminder of what it means to actually support young galleries.”

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