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.

“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