The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth presents URBAN THEATER: NEW YORK ART IN THE 1980s. Vibrant, vital, and discordant, the New York art scene of the 1980s gave rise to some of the contemporary art world’s most recognizable features. As the artists who emerged in that decade now set records at auction, the era is ripe to be reexamined. Representing in turns a cool irony, reflections on media culture, consumerism, cartoons, and street art, the work collected here re-creates the tense energy of a grittier New York.
The Modern maintains one of the foremost collections of modern and contemporary international art in the central United States. Various movements, themes, and styles are represented, including Abstract Expressionism, Color Field painting, Pop art, and Minimalism, as well as aspects of New Image Painting from the 1970s and beyond, recent developments in abstraction and figurative sculpture, and contemporary movements in photography, video, and digital imagery.
NOTE: The first-floor galleries will be closed August 4 through August 21.
Conceptual artist Rirkrit Tiravanija (pronounced Rick-rit Tee-rah-vah-nit), born in 1961 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, grew up living between Thailand, Ethiopia, and Canada as the son of a Thai diplomat. His grandmother played an important role in his life. She taught cooking on Thai television and owned a restaurant in Bangkok, where Tiravanija spent time as a youth. This background influenced the artist’s work, which often involves cooking in art-related places, such as museums and galleries.
The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and the Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, present a joint exhibition of the work of artist David Bates on view February 9 through May 11, 2014. The exhibition is a retrospective of Bates’s work installed in both locations with an emphasis on painting in Fort Worth and sculpture and works on paper in Dallas. This is the first collaboration between the two museums. The exhibition is organized by Dr. Marla Price, director of the Modern, and Jeremy Strick, director of the Nasher.
The exhibition presents a selection of works that span the past 10 years of the artist’s career, including his elaborately layered paintings and New York Times collages.
Terry Haggerty draws on the vocabulary of abstract art to create his illusory paintings and large-scale wall works. The artist’s central motif is created by painting patterned lines that alternate a light and dark color, such as white and blue. When juxtaposed, these colors play off of each other, appearing to advance and recede (as seen in Kinetic Friction, 2009).
México Inside Out: Themes in Art Since 1990 is one of the largest and most ambitious exhibitions in over a decade to examine contemporary art of central Mexico and Mexico City from the 1990s to the present day. Organized by curator Andrea Karnes, the exhibition is the first of its kind to be presented in North Texas.
The city provides the context for the visually packed work of San Francisco native Barry McGee. Since the mid-1980s, when McGee was a teenager, he has lived in the city’s oldest neighborhood, the Mission District. At that time, the Mission held a colorful, somewhat seedy, antiestablishment atmosphere with a thriving culture of youth, alternative musicians, artists, and thinkers. The vibe of the Mission influenced the artist early on, and he began to infiltrate the area’s flourishing graffiti boom with images that he created to reflect his surroundings.
New York-based artist Gary Simmons is known for his “erasure” technique, which he began using in the early 1990s. Initially creating semi-erased works with chalk on blackboards, the artist has evolved to works on paper, paint on canvas, and murals that mimic smudged chalk. The resulting blurred and ghostly images often refer to intersections of pop culture, race, and class.
British/Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare MBE explores colonialism and the intricate ways in which it has shaped, and continues to shape, cultural identities. He is well known for his life-size sculptural tableaux featuring staged, headless mannequins dressed in elaborate period garments. In these works, the materials and designs of the original clothing are replaced with batik, a colorful and ornately patterned fabric.