The 2016 lineup of solo shows at SculptureCenter in Long Island City will feature projects exclusively by female artists—Rochelle Goldberg, Leslie Hewitt, Mika Tajima (doing a public commission in nearby Court Square), and Cosima von Bonin.
“I would say it was not intentional that all of the artists are women in this stretch of time,” Mary Ceruti, SculptureCenter’s executive director and chief curator, said of the institution’s schedule in an interview. “But part of our mandate, and what only makes sense to me as a curator and as a director, is to show work that has merit and doesn’t have enough attention, and that happens to be more true for women than men because they don’t get a lot of visibility in the art world.”
In a better world this wouldn’t be news, but there is a longstanding and well-documented gender imbalance in terms of the attention received by male artists over female artists in galleries, museums, and biennials.
Ceruti noted that SculptureCenter has historically worked with a lot of women artists, but added that she’s “done plenty of solo projects with men, and included them in group shows.” (SculptureCenter’s final two exhibitions of 2015 open tomorrow, with a solo presentation by a women, Anthea Hamilton, and another by a man, Gabriel Sierra, that artist’s first one-person museum show in New York.)
“I wouldn’t say we set out to correct an injustice,” Ceruti continued, “or that we wanted to do a year of women. It’s not thematic in that way at all. In New York, the galleries do so much to introduce artists to audiences, but as we know, the commercial sphere tends to be more supportive of men than women. So it’s really about filling a gap. I don’t want to pretend to be unconscious of it.”