Art History from Home: Abstracted Bodies

Tues, Aug 18, 2020
6 pm

Online, via Zoom

This series of online talks by the Whitney’s Joan Tisch Teaching Fellows highlights works in the Museum's collection and recent exhibitions to illuminate critical topics in American art from 1900 to the present. During each thirty-minute session, participants are invited to comment and ask questions through a moderated chat.

The body, one of the oldest subjects in the history of art, is still central to our understanding and experience of human life and identity. While the human figure has lost none of its fascination for contemporary visual artists, many choose to avoid illusionistic representation of the body. This session will explore how artists in the Whitney's collection, including Jay DeFeo, Senga Nengudi, and Christina Quarles, have used a range of strategies like abstraction, metonymy, and metaphor to refer to the human body.

Janine DeFeo is a Joan Tisch Teaching Fellow at the Whitney and a Ph.D. candidate in art history at the CUNY Graduate Center. She has taught at Baruch College and is currently a writing fellow at Hostos Community College. Her academic research theorizes and historicizes the material use of food in American performance art of the 1960s and 1970s.

Live captioning is available for public programs and events upon request with seven business days advance notice. We will make every effort to provide accommodation for requests made outside of that window of time. To place a request, please contact us at or (646) 666-5574 (voice). Relay and voice calls welcome.

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