U.S. Museum Exhibitions

The following guide to museum shows currently on view is compiled from Artforum’s three-times-yearly exhibition preview. Subscribe now to begin a year of Artforum—the world’s leading magazine of contemporary art. You’ll get all three big preview issues, featuring Artforum’s comprehensive advance roundups of the shows to see each season around the globe.

Calder, Sandback, and Tuttle

PULITZER ARTS FOUNDATION
SAINT LOUIS
Through September 12
Curated by Carmen Giménez, Tamara H. Schenkenberg and Emily Rauh Pulitzer

Tadao Ando’s 2001 building for the Pulitzer Arts Foundation is both minimal and restrained, but it’s not quite a white cube. It is light gray, the color of the architect’s signature cast-in-place concrete, and its complex interiors, marked by carefully layered spaces and subtle plays of height and volume, belie the boxlike simplicity of its silhouette. As the latest spate of high-profile institutional projects reveals that museum architecture is still defined by the familiar polarity between overwhelming excess and mind-numbing neutrality, Ando’s recently completed renovation of the Pulitzer (which has transformed the building’s lower administrative and storage level into new galleries) could not be more timely. The inaugural, multilevel installation of solo exhibitions of the work of Alexander Calder, Fred Sandback, and Richard Tuttle serves to emphasize visual and spatial interconnection, demonstrating that a museum can actively shape the viewer’s experience without overpowering the art or simply fading into the background.

Julian Rose

Wanda Pimentel, Untitled—Série Envolvimento, 1967, acrylic on canvas, 45 3/4 × 35 1/8". From “International
Pop.”

“International Pop”

WALKER ART CENTER
MINNEAPOLIS
Through September 6
Curated by Darsie Alexander with Bartholomew Ryan

If a select few of Pop art’s past and present stars (think Sigmar Polke and Jeff Koons) recently took New York, the Walker Art Center’s upcoming exhibition—featuring some 140 works produced over the course of three decades on four continents—aims to widen our Pop horizons far beyond the usual names and locales. Alongside such household brands as Warhol and Rauschenberg, Polke will make an appearance, but so too will his (less recognized) fellow Capitalist Realists Konrad Lueg and Manfred Kuttner, here joined by Argentineans Marta Minujín and Edgardo Giménez, Brazilian Wanda Pimentel, and the Japanese-born Ushio Shinohara and Yayoi Kusama, among many others. Incorporating an extensive film and video program and showcasing works across media, the Walker exhibition and accompanying catalogue promise an unmatched opportunity to assess Pop’s global reach, and (it’s Pop, after all) to see some standout works by a few undisputed stars in the process. Travels to the Dallas Museum of Art, Oct. 11–Jan. 17, 2016; Philadelphia Museum of Art, Feb. 18–May 15, 2016.

Graham Bader

Catherine Opie, Mary, 2012, ink-jet print, 50 × 38 3/8".

“Catherine Opie: Portraits and Landscapes”

WEXNER CENTER FOR THE ARTS
COLUMBUS, OH
Through August 2
Curated by Bill Horrigan

From leather dykes and surfer dudes to LA freeways and Minnesota icehouses, the photography of Catherine Opie has long engaged in a dialogue between the genres of portraiture and landscape. The Wexner offers a new lens through which to understand that discourse by focusing on two of Opie’s most recent bodies of work: a series of color portraits of friends, family members, and fellow artists and a collection of quasi-abstract landscape photographs. Opie pushes the lush color and formal stature of her portraits even further, sometimes presenting these works in oval formats recalling Northern Renaissance painting. In her latest landscapes, she racks the camera’s focus to create pictures in which nature (forests, waterfalls, mountains) is loosely recognizable yet never clearly resolved or easily inhabitable. This show promises to open another chapter in Opie’s ongoing—and thoroughly indispensable—photographic story.

Richard Meyer

“Barbara Kasten: Stages”

ICA - INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART, PHILADELPHIA
PHILADELPHIA
Through August 16
Curated by Alex Klein

A good survey exhibition is both thoughtful in its assessment of an artist’s contribution and timed to a moment in which the public is primed to consider it. “Barbara Kasten: Stages” promises to be both, as Kasten’s measured engagement with photographic, sculptural, and architectural ideas since the 1970s is an undeniable precedent and prompt for contemporary postdisciplinary art practices. Tracking the artist’s remarkable trajectory through Bauhausian pedagogy and fiber art in the ’60s, the California Light and Space movement in the ’70s, and postmodernism in the ’80s, and culminating with her stellar recent photographs and a site-specific video work, this exhibition animates and provides access to a protean four-decade-long practice. In the accompanying catalogue, the long-underrecognized artist remarks in conversation with artist Liz Deschenes—one of a generation of younger artists influenced by Kasten’s work—that she feels as if she has finally found her peers. A new round of conversations and exchanges is about to begin.

Charlotte Cotton

Spread from Andy Warhol’s A Gold Book, 1957, offset lithographic prints and hand coloring on paper, 14 1/2 × 23". © Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.

“Warhol by the Book”

WILLIAMS COLLEGE MUSEUM OF ART (WCMA)
WILLIAMSTOWN, MA
Through August 16
Curated by Matt Wrbican

Given the attention afforded every aspect of Andy Warhol’s diverse production and legacy, it is surprising that his engagement with books has taken so long to come to the fore. Like last year’s anthology Reading Andy Warhol: Author Illustrator Publisher, “Warhol by the Book” seeks to rectify this situation, bringing together some four hundred objects associated with more than eighty different books, from faux-naive self-published pre-Pop titles to the fascinatingly dark Andy Warhol’s Index (Book) of 1967, which encapsulates the look and ethos of the Silver Factory at its height. Highlights include the lesser-known 1968 print portfolio Flash—November 22, 1963, the prepublication designer’s dummy and mock-up for the Index (Book), and a diminutive but intriguing Marilyn Monroe Book Maquette, ca. 1968. With no planned catalogue, you will have to get yourself to Williamstown to see these books in person. Travels to the Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, Oct. 9, 2015– Jan. 10, 2016.

Branden W. Joseph

“Alex Katz: This Is Now”

HIGH MUSEUM OF ART
ATLANTA
Through September 6
Curated by Michael Rooks

In his ninth decade, Alex Katz has been the subject of numerous retrospectives, but, as this show’s subtitle asserts, retrospection need not obviate contemporaneity. At the High, more than forty works created between 1954 (the year of Katz’s first public outing) and 2013 will draw our attention to the increasingly forthright place of landscape in his practice: What once served as background for his smoothly rendered figures had become a prepossessing subject in its own right by the 1980s. “This Is Now” highlights this shift. By bringing together fifteen large-scale landscapes of moonlit skies, pools of water, banks of snow, and dense fir groves, the exhibition promises a propitious opportunity to reconsider the attribution of realism to works that verge on abstraction despite—indeed, because of—imagery calibrated into expanses of pure color at environmental scale.

Suzanne Hudson