This Week in Art

“Art in the Twenty-First Century” Premieres Next Week, Laleh Khorramian Gets Mad at Art & More

Zanele Muholi photographs a subject for her ongoing series “Faces and Phases.” Production still from the Art in the Twenty-First Century Season 9 episode, “Johannesburg.” © Art21, Inc. 2018.

The new season of Art in the Twenty-First Century is premiering one week from Friday on PBS. Continuing the thematic focus introduced in the previous season, the ninth installment of the series will investigate artists’ relationships with the places where they create: Berlin, Johannesburg, and the San Francisco Bay Area.

The first episode, premiering September 21 at 9 p.m. (check local listings), is Johannesburg, featuring artists David Goldblatt, Nicholas Hlobo, Zanele Muholi, and Robin Rhode. Collectively, the artists use their work to empower marginalized communities, reexamine history, and pursue their visions for South Africa’s future. Premiering directly after at 10 p.m, is Berlin, an film about a city that has long been a haven for artists. Featuring Nathalie Djuberg & Hans Berg, Olafur Eliasson, Hiwa K, and Suan Philipsz, the episode will explore the diversity of practices and sensibilities that can be found in the German capital. Finally, the San Francisco hour premieres the following week, September 28 at 9 p.m. (check local listings). Together, Creative Growth Art Center, Katy Grannan, Lynn Hershman Leeson, and Stephanie Syjuco reveal the city as a magnet for artists seeking an experimental atmosphere.

Full episodes and segments can be streamed on, on, and on PBS streaming platforms after the premiere of each hour. But you can watch preview segments for all the featured artists now.

News of the Week

  • A new exhibition dedicated to Haitian artists opened Friday at Pioneer Works. PÒTOPRENS: The Urban Artists of Port-au-Prince brings together the work of over twenty-five artists working in the Haitian capital and highlights the city’s many diverse centers of cultural production, informal street life, religious heritage, and mythologies to create a compelling portrait of a historically significant and intensely complex city. Collaboratively curated by Haitian-American artist Edouard Duval-Carrié and British artist Leah Gordon, the exhibition will be in view through November 11.
  • Liliana Porter: Other Situations opens at El Museo del Barrio Thursday. The exhibition is a non-linear survey of the Argentinian-born artist’s work from 1973 to 2018, and explores the conflicting boundaries between reality and fiction, and the ways in which images are circulated and consumed. On view through January 27, 2019.
  • Last week Catherine Sullivan debuted her new film project, The Startled Faction (a sensitivity training), at Metro Pictures, where it will be on view through October 20.

The Artist Speaks

In an interview with The Creative Independent, artist Laleh Khorramian discussed her practice, the reasons why she left New York City, and her multidisciplinary approach to art. When asked about her methods for surviving in the world as a creative person, she said:

“I just don’t feel like I have to prove the same things. Life is hard enough.”

“The things I felt like I had to prove before, I don’t feel the same way about. Not that I think I have to subject or want to subject anyone to art that’s shitty or not thought-out or meaningful or something. I just don’t feel like I have to prove the same things. Life is hard enough.

That’s why I was also mad at art for a while. It was just too emotionally demanding, and I needed to step away and do something that wasn’t as emotionally consuming, and that’s why I was sewing. Sewing was a reprieve. And I am in love with sewing. It’s steady, it’s graceful, and it can be full of invention.”