The new year and decade are right around the corner and art spaces are gearing up for their first shows of 2010. This week’s roundup lists new and upcoming exhibitions featuring Art21 artists who envision utopia; manipulate patterns and dress; summon Baroque culture; and reflect on the intimate act of bathing.
- Season 5 artist Cao Fei will participate in Utopia Matters: From Brotherhoods to Bauhaus at the Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin. The show, organized by Vivien Greene, curator of 19th- and Early 20th-Century Art at the Guggenheim Museum, “examines a sequence of international case studies from the early nineteenth century through 1933, when the Bauhaus closed in Berlin and the ascendancy of Fascism and Stalinism curbed or negatively reframed artistic endeavors.” Utopia Matters also investigates the evolution of utopian ideas in modern Western artistic thought and practice.” The December issue of Art Mag, the online magazine of Deutsche Bank, takes this exhibition as its focus and features an interview with Greene, as well as an essay by Matthew Evans about Fei’s works held in the Deutsche Bank Collection. Utopia Matters opens January 23.
- Pattern ID, a group exhibition at the Akron Art Museum, calls attention to the complexities of cultural identity. Fifteen artists –including Mark Bradford (Season 4) and Yinka Shonibare MBE (Season 5) — manipulate pattern and dress to define as well as expand their cultural identities. Ellen Rudolph, the museum’s Curator of Exhibitions, says, “The artists use pattern and dress to take up the 21st century challenge of locating one’s place in society against the backdrop of globalization. Many of the artists in the exhibition have migrated from one culture to another, be it national, ethnic, racial, socioeconomic, political or religious. Rather than trade one identity for another, the artists in Pattern ID reveal ways in which identity can be cumulative.” On view January 23 – May 9, 2010.
- In October 2008, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery was the only museum in the state of New York selected to receive a gift of fifty works of contemporary art from collectors Dorothy and Herbert Vogel (with the help of the National Gallery of Art, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services). Beginning January 22, audiences will be able to see this gift to the Albright-Knox Gallery in an exhibition entitled Fifty Works for Fifty States: The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Gift. Artists include Richard Tuttle (Season 3), Koki Doktori, Edda Renouf, Larry Poons, Lynda Benglis, Richard Artschwager, and others. This gift is part of the national gifts program, which will distribute 2,500 works from the Vogels’ collection throughout the nation, with fifty works going to a single art institution in each of the fifty states.
- Intimacy! Bathing in Art opens at Berlin’s Ahlen Art Museum on January 31. As you might have guessed from the title, the show considers artistic reflections on bathing, as well as its historical developments and contextual significance. Louise Bourgeois (Season 2), Gustave Caillebotte, Gregory Crewdson, Edgar Degas, Albrecht Dürer, Eric Fischl, David Hockney, and Bill Viola are among the 90 artists selected for this exhibition that spans from the late Middle Ages to the present day.
- Through April 15, works by Cindy Sherman, Jeff Koons (both Season 5), and Matthew Barney (Season 2) are on view at the Madre Museum in Naples, Italy in the exhibition Barock – Art, Science, Faith and Technology in the Contemporary Age. Barock investigates issues that permeated the XVII century and shows how these themes of Baroque culture have been revived by contemporary artists.