Whitney Biennial 2024: Even Better Than the Real Thing

Mar 20–Aug 11, 2024

On view
Floors 1, 3, 5, 6

The eighty-first edition of the Whitney Biennial—the longest-running survey of contemporary art in the United States—features seventy-one artists and collectives grappling with many of today’s most pressing issues. This Biennial is like being inside a “dissonant chorus," as participating artist Ligia Lewis described it, a provocative yet intimate experience of distinct and disparate voices that collectively probe the cracks and fissures of the unfolding moment.

The exhibition’s subtitle, Even Better Than the Real Thing, acknowledges that Artificial Intelligence (AI) is complicating our understanding of what is real, and rhetoric around gender and authenticity is being used politically and legally to perpetuate transphobia and restrict bodily autonomy. These developments are part of a long history of deeming people of marginalized race, gender, and ability as subhuman—less than real. In making this exhibition, we committed to amplifying the voices of artists who are confronting these legacies, and to providing a space where difficult ideas can be engaged and considered.

This Biennial is a gathering of artists who explore the permeability of the relationships between mind and body, the fluidity of identity, and the growing precariousness of the natural and constructed worlds around us. Whether through subversive humor, expressive abstraction, or non-Western forms of cosmological thinking, to name but a few of their methods, these artists demonstrate that there are pathways to be found, strategies of coping and healing to be discovered, and ways to come together even in a fractured time.

The 2024 Whitney Biennial is organized by Chrissie Iles, Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz Curator and Meg Onli, Curator at Large, with Min Sun Jeon and Beatriz Cifuentes. The performance program is organized by Iles and Onli, with guest curator Taja Cheek. The film program is organized by Iles and Onli, with guest curators Korakrit Arunanondchai, asinnajaq, Greg de Cuir Jr, and Zackary Drucker.

View the Biennial film and performance program schedule and watch a number of the films from home on MUBI. 

View the film and performance program Watch Biennial films on MUBI

Review accessibility information before visiting the 2024 Whitney Biennial.


En español

Bienal del Whitney 2024: Aún mejor que la real

La octogésima primera edición de la Bienal del Whitney, la muestra de arte contemporáneo de mayor duración en los Estados Unidos, presenta a setenta y un artistas y dos colectivos que abordan muchos de los temas actuales urgentes. Desde el comienzo buscamos organizar una Bienal que se sintiera como estar dentro de un “coro disonante”, según lo describió Ligia Lewis, una de las artistas participantes; una experiencia provocadora e íntima a la vez, de voces distintas y dispares que colectivamente exploran las grietas y fisuras del momento que estamos viviendo.

El subtítulo de la exhibición: Aún mejor que la real, reconoce que la Inteligencia Artificial (IA) complica nuestra comprensión de lo que es real, y que la retórica alrededor del género y la autenticidad está siendo usada política y legalmente para perpetuar la transfobia y restringir la autonomía corporal. Estos acontecimientos son parte de una larga historia en la cual las personas marginadas por su raza, género y capacidades son consideradas subhumanas, es decir, menos reales. Con esta exhibición nos comprometimos a amplificar las voces de artistas que confrontan estos legados y a brindar un espacio donde las ideas difíciles se pueden abordar y considerar.

Esta Bienal reúne a artistas que exploran la permeabilidad de las relaciones entre mente y cuerpo, la fluidez de la identidad y la creciente precariedad de los mundos naturales y construidos que nos rodean. Ya sea a través del humor subversivo, la abstracción expresiva o formas no occidentales de pensamiento cosmológico, por nombrar algunos de sus métodos, estos artistas demuestran que aún quedan caminos por encontrar, estrategias por descubrir para hacer frente y sanar, y maneras de unirse incluso en una época fracturada.

La Bienal del Whitney 2024 está organizada por Chrissie Iles, Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz Curator, y Meg Onli, Curadora General, con Min Sun Jeon y Beatriz Cifuentes. El programa de performances está organizado por Iles y Onli, con la curadora invitada Taja Cheek. El programa de cine está organizado por Iles y Onli, con curadores invitados Korakrit Arunanondchai, asinnajaq, Greg de Cuir Jr, y Zackary Drucker.

Más sobre el arte y artistas que forman parte de la Bienal del Whitney 2024: Aún mejor que la real.

Eventos en español


Artists

A stitched figure on fabric with the caption "We are Taíno" displayed on a grainy background.

1

Siku Allooloo (she/her)

Born 1986 in Yellowknife, Canada
Lives in Bowser, Canada
A singer performing on stage, bathed in blue light, eyes closed with emotion.

2

Holland Andrews (they/them)

Born 1988 in Orange, CA
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
Large translucent art installation with amber hues in a room with floor-to-ceiling windows and cityscape views.

3

Eddie Rodolfo Aparicio (he/him)

Born 1990 in Los Angeles, CA
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
A large stone block on a wooden floor with a blurred photo of a sculpture leaning against a wall in a gallery.

4

Dora Budor

Born 1984 in Zagreb, Croatia
Lives in New York, NY
Aerial view of a person lying on a hammock over a lush forest with a river running below.

5

Seba Calfuqueo (she/her/they/them)

Born 1991 in Santiago, Chile
Lives in Ngulumapu, Wallmapu (Chile)
A woman with black hair appears behind a distorted glass pane, her face and hand visibly smeared.

6

Debit (she/her)

Born 1986 in Monterrey, Mexico
Lives in New York, NY
Neon light installation with text on metal stands in an art gallery, wooden floors, and abstract art in the background.

7

Demian DinéYazhi' (they/them)

Born 1983 in Gallup, NM, Diné Bikéyah
Lives in Portland, OR, and elsewhere
Modern outdoor sculpture resembling a stylized triangular portal, with city skyline and blue sky in the background.

8

Torkwase Dyson (she/her)

Born 1973 in Chicago, IL
Lives in Beacon, NY
A big audience watching an artist play the saxophone outdoors.

9

JJJJJerome Ellis (any/all)

Born 1989 in Groton, CT
Lives in Norfolk, VA
A twisted and porous bone structure with cavities and pearl-like objects.

10

Jes Fan (he/him/they/them)

Born 1990 in Scarborough, Canada
Lives in Brooklyn, NY, and Hong Kong 
A grand piano with its lid open, set against a dark background with soft lighting.

11

Nikita Gale

Born 1983 in Anchorage, AK, on Dënéndeh and Dena’ina Ełnena lands
Lives in Los Angeles, CA, on Tongva and Gabrieleno lands
Intricate lace-like textile art pieces displayed in a bright gallery space, hanging from the ceiling and standing on the floor.

12

ektor garcia

Born 1985 in Red Bluff, CA
Lives in Mexico City, Mexico, and elsewhere
A gallery interior with a wooden wall displaying numerous sketches and images, accompanied by an informational poster on the left.

13

Pippa Garner (she/her)

Born 1942 in Evanston, IL
Lives in Long Beach, CA
A stained red and white checkered quilt with a repeating pattern.

14

Harmony Hammond (she/her)

Born 1944 in Chicago, IL
Lives in Galisteo, NM
Black and white photo of a building corner with "ST LOUIS AVE" sign and broken windows.

15

Christopher Harris (he/him)

Born 1962 in St. Louis, MO
Lives in Coralville, IA
Art gallery interior with colorful chairs scattered around and a large video screen displaying people in conversation.

16

Sharon Hayes (she/her)

Born 1970 in Baltimore, MD
Lives in Philadelphia, PA
Two women at a night event with string lights, one holding a yellow cup, both looking surprised or concerned.

17

Miranda Haymon

Born 1993 in Boston, MA
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
A person playing an experimental music setup with various objects on a table, in front of a colorful graffiti backdrop.

18

Sarah Hennies (she/her)

Born 1979 in Louisville, KY
Lives in Red Hook, NY 
Person in a puffy green suit with voluminous orange braids against a sky with clouds.

19

Holly Herndon and Mat Dryhurst (she/her; he/him)

Herndon: born 1980 in Johnson City, TN
Dryhurst: born 1984 in Birmingham, UK
Live in Berlin, Germany
Hands typing on an old typewriter with the word "authors" on the screen, part of an interactive website menu.

20

Ho Tzu Nyen (he/him)

Born 1976 in Singapore
Lives in Singapore
Close-up of a human eye with a reflection of a bride, captioned with a longing quote.

21

Yasmine Anlan Huang 

Born 1996 in Guangzhou, China
Lives in London, UK, and New York, NY
A woman with red lipstick looks pensive, surrounded by people in a vintage setting.

22

Madeleine Hunt-Ehrlich (she/her)

Born 1987 in New York, NY
Lives in New York, NY
Abstract painted sculptures suspended in a modern art gallery setting.

23

Suzanne Jackson (she/her)

Born 1944 in St. Louis, MO
Lives in Savannah, GA
Two men in light suits posing thoughtfully beside a bust sculpture on a pedestal.

24

Isaac Julien

Born 1960 in London, United Kingdom
Lives in London, United Kingdom, and Santa Cruz, CA
Modern art installation with translucent red film panels in a gallery with wooden floors and industrial ceiling.

25

Lotus L. Kang (she/her)

Born 1985 in Toronto, Canada 
Lives in New York, NY
Man with dreadlocks holding a slice of pizza, looking content in a room with purple lighting.

26

Aron Kantor (he/him/they/them)

Born 1978 in San Francisco, CA
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
A collage of twelve calendar pages from 2019, each with handwritten notes and overlaid geometric shapes.

27

Mary Kelly (she/her)

Born 1941 in Fort Dodge, IA
Lives in New York, NY
Concentric white circles creating an optical illusion on a black background.

28

Kite (she/her)

Born 1990 in Sylmar, CA
Lives in Ancram, NY
Two individuals with striking poses surrounded by lush greenery and vibrant flowers.

29

Gbenga Komolafe and Tee Park (they/them/he/him/she/her; she/her)

Komolafe: born 2000 in Port-Harcourt, Nigeria
Park: born 1999 in Seoul, South Korea
Live in Los Angeles, CA
Person in a voluminous orange dress standing in a river with a backdrop of greenery and overcast sky.

30

Jenni Laiti (she/her)

Born 1981 in Anár, Sápmi (Inari, Finland)
Lives in Jåhkåmåhkke, Sápmi (Jokkmokk, Sweden)
Reflective sculpture on wooden floor with framed artworks on the wall in a gallery setting.

31

Carolyn Lazard (they/them)

Born 1987 in San Bernardino, CA
Lives in New York, NY
Modern gallery interior with a video projected on a white wall, wooden floor, and large windows overlooking a brick building.

32

Dionne Lee

Born 1988 in New York, NY
Lives in Columbus, OH
Silhouette of a person with an afro dancing in a sunlit window, with a minimalist room interior.

33

Ligia Lewis (she/her)

Born 1983 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Lives in Germany
A radiant sun with flares beside a moon against a starry space backdrop, with the text "I give you the possibility to live."

34

Shuang Li (she/her)

Born 1990 in Wuyi Mountains, China
Lives in Berlin, Germany, and Geneva, Switzerland
Man in suit walking down a covered pedestrian bridge with mesh walls and overhead lighting.

35

Simon Liu (he/him)

Born 1987 in Hong Kong
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
Vibrant abstract painting with bold reds, blues, and whites, featuring dynamic brushstrokes and textures.

36

Mary Lovelace O'Neal (she/her)

Born 1942 in Jackson, MS
Lives in Oakland, CA, and Merida, Mexico
A large, colorful suspended sculpture resembling an upside down teepee dominates an art gallery with paintings on the walls.

37

Cannupa Hanska Luger (he/him)

Born 1979 in Fort Yates, ND, on the Standing Rock Reservation
Lives in Glorieta, NM
Woman with hoop earrings and leopard print top standing before a purple curtain with twinkling lights.

38

Nyala Moon (she/her)

Born 1992 in New York, NY
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
Modern art installation with curved brown sheets and a textured silver square on a beige, sandy background.

39

K.R.M. Mooney (he/him)

Born 1990 in Seattle, WA
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
Modern art installation with abstract wooden structures and draped fabrics in a gallery setting.

40

Dala Nasser

Born 1990 in Tyre, Lebanon
Lives in Beirut, Lebanon, and London, United Kingdom
A woman and child embrace amid falling confetti, with one comforting the other who appears distressed with a bloody mark on their face.

41

Diane Severin Nguyen (she/her)

Born 1990 in Carson, CA
Lives in New York, NY
Person holding a red and gold patterned cloth over a pair of microphones for an ASMR session.

42

Niillasaš-Jovnna Máreha Juhani Sunná Máret–Sunna Nousuniemi (they/them)

Born 1993 in Anár, Sápmi
Lives in Anár, Sápmi
Modern art gallery with colorful abstract paintings on white walls and a pile of tangled fishing nets on the floor.

43

Karyn Olivier (she/her)

Born 1968 in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
Lives in Philadelphia, PA
Art gallery wall with photographs and beige abstract sculptures casting shadows.

44

B. Ingrid Olson

Born 1987 in Denver, CO
Lives in Chicago, IL
Abstract geometric artwork with colorful shapes and patterns on a beige background.

45

Eamon Ore-Giron (he/him)

Born 1973 in Tucson, AZ
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
Close-up of a man with intense gaze, wearing a shirt and tie, with a shadowy, reddish overlay.

46

Edward Owens (he/him)

Born 1949 in Chicago, IL
Died 2010 in Chicago, IL
Person standing in shallow water with a reflection on the surface, creating a serene and mysterious atmosphere.

47

Sydney Frances Pascal (she/her)

Born 1993 in Nanaimo, Canada
Lives in Vancouver, Canada
Graphic with text in three languages discussing how stuttering can create time.

48

People Who Stutter Create

Founded 2023
Jia Bin, Delicia Daniels, JJJJJerome Ellis, Conor Foran, Kristel Kubart
Modern art gallery interior with abstract paintings on wall and a kinetic sculpture with two colorful shapes on a reflective black disc.

49

Julia Phillips (she/her)

Born 1985 in Hamburg, Germany
Lives in Chicago, IL
Abstract geometric painting with a chaotic arrangement of wooden planks against a backdrop of stylized building facades.

50

Mavis Pusey (she/her)

Born 1928 in Retreat, Jamaica
Died 2019 in Falmouth, VA
Person cycling on a chalky ridge with a stylized drawing of a satellite overhead against a clear blue sky.

51

Raqs Media Collective

Founded 1992 in Delhi, India
Jeebesh Bachi, Monica Narula, Shuddhabrata Sengupta
A glowing blue skull against a black background with a burnt edge effect.

52

Riar Rizaldi (he/him)

Born 1990 in Bandung, Indonesia
Lives in Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Colorful abstract painting with stylized human figures and geometric shapes.

53

Maja Ruznic (she/her)

Born 1983 in Brčko, Bosnia and Herzegovina (Yugoslavia)
Lives in Placitas, NM
Modern art installation with abstract sculptures and scattered metallic elements in a gallery space.

54

Ser Serpas (she/her)

Born 1995 in East Los Angeles, CA
Lives in New York, NY
Four sculptures in human form with patterns and jewelry adorning them.

55

Rose B. Simpson (she/her)

Born 1983 in Santa Fe, NM
Lives in Santa Clara Pueblo, NM
Black and white photo of a person with curly hair sitting outdoors, resting their chin on crossed arms.

56

Penelope Spheeris (she/her)

Born 1945 in New Orleans, LA
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
A room with yellow walls and ceiling, a net hanging below white lights, and a herringbone wood floor leading to an open door.

57

P. Staff (they/them)

Born 1987 in the UK
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
Person in a hooded jacket with fur trim, facing away, enveloped in a misty white haze.

58

Lada Suomenrinne (they/them)

Born 1995 in Murmansk, Russia
Lives in Espoo, Finland, and Njuorggán, Sápmi
Performer with smeared makeup holding apple halves to eyes, sitting on a blue barrel against a black background.

59

Alex Tatarsky (they/them)

Born 1989 in New York, NY
Lives in New York, NY, and Philadelphia, PA
Fossilized horse skeleton surrounded by rocks on a textured surface.

60

Alisi Telengut (she/her)

Born 1989 in Inner Mongolia (Telengut and Mongolian nations)
Lives in Berlin, Germany, and Tiohtià:ke/Montreal, Canada
Person with arms raised facing a serene lake and mountains.

61

Clarissa Tossin (she/her)

Born 1973 in Porto Alegre, Brazil
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
A circular cutout in a grayscale floral backdrop reveals vibrant pink flowers, contrasting with the monochrome surroundings.

62

Tourmaline (she/her)

Born 1983 in Boston, MA
Lives in New York, NY
Two silhouetted figures face each other intimately against a dimly lit background.

63

Chanelle Tyson (they/them)

Born 1989 in Greensboro, NC
Lives in Los Angeles, CA
Man in a flat cap peeking through a hole in a wooden fence.

64

Zulaa Urchuud (she/her)

Born 1991 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Lives in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Modern art gallery interior with abstract paintings on white walls and a large, angled mirror installation reflecting the space.

65

Charisse Pearlina Weston (she/her)

Born 1988 in Houston, TX
Lives in New York, NY
A weathered, upside-down building facade that looks like the White House installed on an urban plaza with a staircase and American flag in the background.

66

Kiyan Williams (they/them)

Born 1991 in Newark, NJ
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
A large collage of numerous photos covering an entire gallery wall, viewed from a wooden floor.

67

Carmen Winant (she/her)

Born 1983 in San Francisco, CA
Lives in Columbus, OH
Abstract artwork with concentric circles, red background, wavy lines, and sandy texture.

68

Takako Yamaguchi (she/her)

Born 1952 in Okayama, Japan
Lives in Santa Monica, CA
A dimly lit room with purple lighting, featuring a minimalist art installation with a neon line on the floor.

69

Constantina Zavitsanos (any/all)

Born 1977 in Reading, PA
Lives in New York, NY


Events

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Audio guides

Whitney Biennial 2024
Floor 1

Hear directly from artists and curators on selected works from the exhibition.

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Whitney Biennial 2024
Floor 3

Hear directly from artists and curators on selected works from the exhibition.

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Whitney Biennial 2024
Floor 5

Hear directly from artists and curators on selected works from the exhibition.

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Whitney Biennial 2024
Floor 6

Hear directly from artists and curators on selected works from the exhibition.

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Exhibition Catalogue

Since its introduction in 1932, the Whitney Biennial has charted new developments in contemporary art. Amid ongoing upheavals in cultural, social, and political spheres, this catalogue offers an engaging new take on the storied institution of the Biennial while continuing to serve, as all previous editions have, as an invaluable resource about art in the United States today.

The curators of the 2024 Whitney Biennial, Chrissie Iles and Meg Onli, are both known for genre-defying, boundary-pushing thematic exhibitions. A thematically organized image section reflecting the work of artists in the Biennial is followed by entries about each artist—an approach that encourages readers to draw connections between the work of different artists. A collaborative essay by Iles and Onli presents their thinking behind the exhibition, while essays by curators and scholars Eva Hayward and Amber Jamilla Musser surface specific themes.

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Whitney Biennial 2024: Even Better Than the Real Thing is presented by

The exhibition is also sponsored by

     

     

Generous support is provided by Judy Hart Angelo; The Brown Foundation, Inc., of Houston; David Cancel and Family; Lise and Michael Evans; Kevin, Rosemary, and Hannah Rose McNeely; the John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation; The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation; The Rosenkranz Foundation; Marcia Dunn and Jonathan Sobel; and the Whitney’s National Committee.

Major support is provided by The Keith Haring Foundation Exhibition Fund.

Significant support is provided by the 2024 Biennial Committee Co-Chairs: Sarah Arison, Paul Arnhold, Jill Bikoff, Beth Rudin DeWoody, Miyoung Lee, Joel Lubin, Michael Kassan, and George Wells; 2024 Biennial Committee members: Barbara Bluhm-Kaul and Don Kaul, Alexandre and Lori Chemla, Suzanne and Bob Cochran, Deepa Kumaraiah and Sean Dempsey, Sheree and Jerry Friedman, Ashley Leeds and Christopher Harland, the Kapadia Equity Fund, Dawn and David Lenhardt, the McCallum Family, Orentreich Family Foundation, Nancy and Fred Poses, Jonathan M. Rozoff, Katherine Sachs, Alice and Manu Sareen, Annette and Paul Smith, and Patricia J. Villareal and Thomas S. Leatherbury; and Susan and Matthew Blank, James Keith (JK) Brown and Eric Diefenbach, Jung and Nelson Chai, Jill Cowan and Stephen Davis, Martha and Paddy Farrell, Melanie Shorin and Greg S. Feldman, Charlotte Feng Ford, Cindy and Mark Galant, Christy and Bill Gautreaux, Debra and Jeffrey Geller Family Foundation, Judelson Family Foundation, Peter H. Kahng, Cathy M. Kaplan, Lisa H. Kim and Eunu Chun, the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation, Iris Z. Marden, Marjorie Mayrock, Shelley and David Sonenberg, Gloria H. Spivak, Jackson Tang, and anonymous donors.

Biennial funding is also provided by endowments created by Melva Bucksbaum, Emily Fisher Landau, Leonard A. Lauder, and Fern and Lenard Tessler as well as the Adam D. Weinberg Artists First Fund.

Curatorial research and travel for this exhibition were funded by an endowment established by Rosina Lee Yue and Bert A. Lies, Jr., MD.

New York magazine is the exclusive media sponsor.

The Whitney Biennial and the Hyundai Terrace Commission are a multiyear partnership with Hyundai Motor. The Hyundai Terrace Commission is an annual site-specific installation on the Whitney Museum’s fifth-floor outdoor gallery.


More from this series

Learn more about the Whitney Biennial, the longest-running survey of American art.