12% of this article is about the Guggenheim…
by Michael Sheridan
While the semester is coming to a close, the art world is gearing up for a spectacular lineup of summer exhibitions. Hoping to gain much needed income from the summer tourists, museums often host their best shows during the season. Here are my picks for the top summer exhibitions that are being held in New York.
Museum of Modern Art, Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction. Despite the fact that the art world is often associated with liberal and progressive ideas, the history of art is littered with extreme sexism. However, amid the wave of feminism that took hold in post-war America, women confronted this extreme sexism and fought to have their creative voices heard by critics and institutions. MoMA plans to showcase these artists in a female-only show dedicated to abstract art of the postwar period. The show is a great opportunity for works of art that are often otherwise pushed aside, as MoMA does its part to take a stand against the continued sexist approach to fine art. The show runs through June 13th.
Neue Galerie, Richard Gerstl. The first retrospective of Gerstl in the United States, this show aims to examine the tragic life and amazing art of the little-known Austrian Expressionist. The show features 55 of the 90 works that comprise the artist’s body of work, revealing a true insight into what could have been one of the greatest artists of the 20th century. Tragically, Gerstl famously committed suicide after his affair with the wife of his friend, the composer Arnold Schoenberg, before Gerstl’s career could really take off. The show runs from June 29th to September 25th.
Guggenheim Museum, Mystical Symbolism: The Salon de la Rose+Croix in Paris, 1892–1897. What is shaping up to be one of the most unique exhibitions, the Guggenheim is presenting works that were inspired by members of the mystical Salon de la Rose+Croix which was popular in Belle époque Paris. The show features work from a variety of nations, and a multitude of artists who mainly worked in the symbolist style. Overall, the show promises to be a rare glimpse into a century old French cult. The show runs from June 30th to October 4th.
Cooper Hewitt, The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s. Embrace your inner flapper or tote your Al Capone suit to see the style and design of the enigmatic 1920s. The show features everything from jewelry to fashion to furniture offering to take visitors back in time. The show pairs well with other smaller exhibitions such as The World of Radio and Jeweled Splendors of the Art Deco Era, which offers a further view into the world of the interwar period. The Jazz Age runs through August 20th.
The Museum of Art and Design, fashion after Fashion. This show focuses entirely on fashion in a world which has reportedly experienced “the end of fashion as we know it” by the influential critic Li Edelkoort in 2015. The show focuses on the future of fashion and how modern designers are looking to reinvent and reinvigorate the entire art form, and a return of creativity and thought to what has become a commercialized form of expression. In my opinion, this exhibition will be more interesting than the Met’s famous Costume Institute exhibit. The crowds will certainly be smaller! The show runs from April 27th to August 6th.
The Whitney Museum of American Art, Calder: Hypermobility. Exploring the works of the pioneering artist Alexander Calder, this retrospective aims to show Calder’s “Kinetic Sculptures” in a way that has never before been seen. By implementing “regular activations” of the moving sculptures and mobiles, the Whitney is aiming to allow the visitors to experience the artwork as Calder originally intended. I believe that the massive spaces and ceilings in the new Whitney building will be an asset to making this show a success and properly portray the work of Calder as it is meant to be seen. The show runs from June 9th to October 23rd.
The Brooklyn Museum, We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965–85 and Georgia O’Keeffe: Living Modern. These two shows focus on women who defied expectations and the world around them. The first show reveals the important role Black women played in second wave feminism. The second show reveals how the artist Georgia O’Keeffe threw all the rules and expectations out the window through her Bohemian lifestyle. Both bring important insight into feminism of the past, and the continued struggle for equality to this day. Revolution runs from April 21st to September 17th and O’Keeffe runs through July 23rd.
Whether you live in New York, or are just planning to visit, there are plenty of exciting exhibits to keep you occupied throughout the entire summer!