Helen Molesworth, with Terri Thornton

“Even my curating was basically a form of writing in my mind. . . . Each art object is a sentence, a room is a paragraph, six rooms is an essay.” —Helen Molesworth, quoted in Robin Pogrebin, “A Curator Unbound,” The New York Times

“She [Helen Molesworth] has this omnivorous cultural quality paired with deep, rigorous study—the learning is worn very lightly. It’s very easy for her to communicate things that I think other people would get very didactic about.” —Lucas Zwirner, quoted in Robin Pogrebin, “A Curator Unbound,” The New York Times

As a special season finale, Tuesday Evenings at the Modern presents an evening with Helen Molesworth and Terri Thornton on the recently released Open Questions: Thirty Years of Writing about Art (Phaidon, 2023).

In this exclusive Fort Worth event, the Modern’s Terri Thornton, curator of education, is in conversation with writer, curator, and podcaster Helen Molesworth about her new book. Over the past three decades, Molesworth’s singular voice and lively curatorial vision has established her as one of the most dynamic and influential voices in the art world. Open Questions, the first-ever collection of her writings, presents 24 essays from the past 30 years, gathered from exhibition catalogs and art publications such as Artforum, Documents, frieze, and October. In this wide-ranging conversation, Molesworth and Thornton explore art’s unique capacity for merging knowledge and feeling, reflections on Molesworth’s past writing, and new ways of viewing and thinking about contemporary art.

Helen Molesworth is a writer, curator, and podcaster based in Los Angeles. Her major monographic exhibitions include Ruth Asawa, Moyra Davey, Noah Davis, Steve Locke, Kerry James Marshall, Josiah McElheny, Catherine Opie, Amy Sillman, and Luc Tuymans. A prolific and award-winning author, Molesworth is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Clark Art Writing Prize, and the Bard Center for Curatorial Studies Award for Curatorial Excellence. Her podcast, Death of an Artist, made numerous “Best of 2022” lists. Open Questions: Thirty Years of Writing about Art is available now from Phaidon.


Video recording available on the Modern's YouTube channel.

Tuesday Evenings