Whitney Biennial 2004

Mar 11–May 30, 2004

The Whitney Biennial 2004 was curated by Chrissie Iles, Shamim M. Momin, and Debra Singer.

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In the News

“When the 2004 Biennial opens this spring, the often controversial survey of contemporary art will extend well beyond the walls of the Whitney Museum of American Art. There will be art from one end of Central Park to the other . . .” —The New York Times

“This survey [. . .] remains upbeat and ingratiating, almost polite, on the surface at least, with a utopian streak and a youth-heavy emphasis on gloss and craft. Politics, while hardly ignored [. . .], exchange claims of affliction for a greater emphasis on formal allure.” —The New York Times

“In general, the show acknowledges the New York establishment taste that the last biennial, to its cost, ignored.” —The New York Times

“There is plenty of dross at the 2004 Whitney Biennial, but it’s the same dross that any thorough survey of the art world would reveal. Current trends correctly noted by the curators, and represented in this show, include sleepy abstraction, retro psychedelia and neoconservative figure painting.” —The Washington Post

“Extensive surveys of contemporary art are seldom as polished as was this year’s Biennial exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art [. . .], ensuring that its curators [. . .] generated lively debate around a show that was coherent and fluid.” —The Burlington Magazine

“. . . allowing for its essentially capricious nature, the 2004 Biennial seemed to be one of the better ones. The usual ‘ageism’ prevailed [. . .] but there was much less aggressive political art or designed-to-disgust sociological commentary than in other recent Biennials. The videos seemed less intrusive and less raucous, and the installation was generally clearer and less jam-packed with disparate works. This Biennial was polite.” —The Hudson Review

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