Advance Exhibition Schedule

Where We Are: Selections from the Whitney’s Collection, 1900–1960
Apr 28, 2017–

At a time when debate continues over what it means to be American, Where We Are proposes a framework of everyday relationships, institutions, and activities that form an individual's sense of self. The exhibition focuses on works from the Whitney’s collection made between 1900 and 1960, a tumultuous period in the history of the United States when life in the country changed drastically due to war, economic collapse, and demands for civil rights. Artists responded in complex and diverse ways, and the exhibition honors their efforts to put forward new ways of presenting the self and American life.

Where We Are is organized by David Breslin, DeMartini Family Curator and Director of the Collection, with Jennie Goldstein, assistant curator, and Margaret Kross, curatorial assistant.

Programmed: Rules, Codes, and Choreographies in Art, 1965–2018
Sep 28, 2018–Apr 14, 2019

Programmed: Rules, Codes, and Choreographies in Art, 1965–2018 focuses on video and computational art from the 1960s until today. Taken from the Whitney's collection, the show brings together key works and projects that have never been shown before, highlighting the breadth of the collection and providing new perspectives. The exhibition links two strands of artistic exploration that are related in their use of a “program”: one section explores programming as instructions and algorithms from a more conceptual perspective; the other engages with the TV program, its apparatus, and signal or the instruction-based manipulation of image sequences. In different ways, all of the artworks in the exhibition refer to their condition of being programmed. Together they illustrate the evolution of today's image world, from the idea of “the machine that makes the art” to broadcasting systems and a visual and cultural landscape driven by algorithms. Programmed explores both the potentially infinite aspects of image-making and its limits.

This exhibition is organized by Christiane Paul, Adjunct Curator of Digital Art, Carol Mancusi-Ungaro, Melva Bucksbaum Associate Director for Conservation and Research, with Clémence White, curatorial assistant.

Derek Fordjour: Half Mast
Sep 24, 2018–

Half Mast, a new work by Derek Fordjour, will be the eighth work in the ongoing series of public art installations on the façade of 95 Horatio Street, located directly across from the Whitney Museum of American Art and the High Line. The exhibition marks the artist’s first museum solo exhibition.

Half Mast considers the recent national conversation around gun violence, speaking in particular to the surge of school shootings and to the everyday atrocities impacting Black and Brown communities in the United States. The piece offers a portrait of this complex moment in U.S. history by presenting many figures that are part of this conversation in one compressed, shared space. The crowd includes law enforcement officials and civilians, including students, as well as absent figures, bodies marked with targets, and teddy bears and balloons reminiscent of street side memorials.

Derek Fordjour: Half Mast is organized by Allie Tepper, curatorial project assistant

Andy Warhol— From A to B and Back Again
Nov 12, 2018–Mar 31, 2019

Few American artists are as ever-present and instantly recognizable as Andy Warhol (1928–1987). Uniting all aspects, media, and periods of Warhol’s career, this exhibition provides an historic opportunity to better comprehend the work of the most American of artists. The presentation illuminates the breadth and depth of the artist’s production: from his beginnings as a commercial illustrator in the 1950s, to his iconic Pop masterpieces of the early 1960s, to the experimental work in film and other mediums from the 1960s and '70s, to his innovative use of readymade abstraction and the painterly sublime in the 1980s. Building on the wealth of new research and materials that have come to light since the artist’s untimely death, this exhibition reveals new complexities about the Warhol we think we know, and introduces a Warhol for the 21st century. 

The exhibition tours to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in spring 2019, and to the Art Institute of Chicago in fall 2019. 

The exhibition is organized by Donna De Salvo, Deputy Director for International Initiatives and Senior Curator, with Christie Mitchell, senior curatorial assistant, and Mark Loiacono, curatorial research associate. 

Kevin Beasley: A view of a landscape
Dec 15, 2018– Mar 10, 2019

Kevin Beasley (b. 1985, Lynchburg, VA) engages with the legacy of the American South through a new installation that centers on a cotton gin motor from Maplesville, Alabama. In operation from 1940 to 1973, the motor powered the gins that separated cotton seeds from fiber. Here, the New York-based artist uses it to generate sound as if it were a musical instrument, creating space for visual and aural contemplation. Through the use of customized microphones, soundproofing, and audio hardware, the installation divorces the physical motor from the noises it produces, enabling visitors to experience sight and sound as distinct. As an immersive experience, the work serves as a meditation on history, land, race, and labor.

This exhibition is organized by Christopher Y. Lew, Nancy and Fred Poses Curator, with Ambika Trasi, curatorial assistant.

Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s
Opens March 29, 2019

Painters in the 1960s faced a dilemma. Committed to the notion that color combined with gesture could still be an advanced form of artistic practice, they were forced to reckon with the newly-indelible legacy of Abstract Expressionism and the freshly-ascendant reign of Pop Art. After the painterly inventions of Jackson Pollock and the critical and cool precision of Andy Warhol, what could painting do? Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s looks to the particular power of color to articulate questions around perception, race, gender, and the coding of space. Instead of bracketing artists by movement—using terms like Op Art and Color Field—the exhibition gathers paintings that differently employ direct, saturated, even hallucinatory colors to activate the viewer’s perception.

While contemporaneous accounts spoke in universal ways about perception, recent scholarship has looked to the personal, social, and political conditions that impact how we understand and speak about perception. Many of the artists in the exhibition were painting as active participants in the civil rights and women’s rights movements. Their—primarily abstract—paintings permit spaces for viewers to consider the politics of place and presence.

Drawn entirely from the Whitney’s collection, the exhibition includes important recent acquisitions by Emma Amos and Kay WalkingStick, as well as works by Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, Marcia Hafif, Ellsworth Kelly, Morris Louis, and Bob Thompson. The title of the exhibition is taken from a quote by Thompson, who shortly before his death in 1966 said, “I paint many paintings that tell me slowly that I have something inside of me that is just bursting, twisting, sticking, spilling over to get out. Out into souls and mouths and eyes that have never seen before.” Spilling Over demonstrates why and how painting could still matter for artists who wanted to see anew.

The exhibition is organized by David Breslin, DeMartini Family Curator and Director of the Collection, with Margaret Kross, curatorial assistant, Whitney Museum of American Art.

The exhibition is organized by David Breslin, DeMartini Family Curator and Director of the Collection, with Margaret Kross, curatorial assistant.

Moved by the Motion: Sudden Rise
April 16-17, 2019

Sudden Rise is the New York City debut of Moved by the Motion, an ensemble formed in 2013 by recently named MacArthur “Genius” Award recipient Wu Tsang and interdisciplinary artist boychild and collaborators, including cellist Patrick Belaga, dancer Josh Johnson, electronic musician Asma Maroof, and poet and critic Fred Moten. A collage of words, film, movements, and sounds, drawn from a collection of fragments excerpted from the text Sudden Rise at a Given Tune, co-written by Tsang, boychild, and Moten, this boundary-defying series of performances interweaves the words and actions of a number of pivotal 20th century civil rights activists, poets, essayists, including Langston Hughes, James Baldwin, and W.E.B. Du Bois, together with lyrics by Jimi Hendrix and Hannah Arendt’s musings. Commissioned by EMPAC / Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Organized by Adrienne Edwards, the Engell Speyer Family Curator and Curator of Performance, Whitney Museum of American Art.

2019 Biennial
May 17 – September 22, 2019

The Whitney Biennial is an unmissable event for anyone interested in finding out what’s happening in art today. Over the past year, the curators have been visiting artists and alternative spaces throughout the United States, in search of the most important, exciting, and relevant work. Taking the pulse of American culture and creativity, the Whitney Biennial is the Museum’s look at the state of contemporary art in the United States. With a venerable history of exhibiting the most stimulating artists – and often provoking debate – the Biennial, introduced by the Museum’s founder Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney in 1932, is the longest-running continuous exhibition in the country to chart the latest developments in American art.

The 2019 Whitney Biennial is organized by Jane Panetta, associate curator, and Rujeko Hockley, assistant curator, Whitney Museum of American Art. The 2019 Whitney Biennial is presented by Tiffany & Co., lead sponsor of the Biennial through 2021.

Jason Moran
September 20, 2019 – January 5, 2020

The boundary-bursting artist Jason Moran grounds his practice in the composition of jazz, bridging the visual and performing arts through spellbinding stagecraft. Heralded as one of the country’s leading jazz innovators, Moran transmutes his personal experience of the world into dynamic musical compositions that challenge the formal conventions of the medium. His experimental approach to art-making embraces the intersection of objects and sound, pushing beyond the traditional in ways that are inherently theatrical. This exhibition, the artist’s first solo museum show, presents the range of work Moran (b. 1975, Houston, TX) has explored, from his own sculptural pieces to collaborations with visual artists to performances. Among the many artists with whom Moran has collaborated are Joan Jonas, Kara Walker, Lorna Simpson, Glenn Ligon, Stan Douglas, Carrie Mae Weems, Adam Pendleton, Theaster Gates, Julie Mehretu, Ryan Trecartin and Lizzie Fitch. Originating in Minneapolis at the Walker Art Center in the spring of 2018, the show has traveled to the ICA Boston and will next be seen at the Wexner Center before its final stop at the Whitney. This grand finale in Moran's hometown will feature many performances by renowned jazz musicians and new live adaptations of works made with his most significant artistic collaborators. Moran was included in the Whitney Biennial 2012, together with Alicia Hall Moran, for which they created a five-day performance residency, BLEED.

Jason Moran is organized by the Walker Art Center, and curated by Adrienne Edwards with Danielle A. Jackson. The Whitney’s presentation is overseen by Adrienne Edwards, the Engell Speyer Family Curator and Curator of Performance, Whitney Museum of American Art.

Rachel Harrison
September 20, 2019 – January 5, 2020

Rachel Harrison’s first full-scale survey will track the development of her career over the past twenty-five years, incorporating room-size installations, autonomous sculpture, photography, and drawing. The breadth of art history, the impurities of politics and celebrity culture, and the strangeness of history coalesce in Harrison’s complex works, in which readymades collude with invented forms. The Whitney’s exhibition will include approximately 100 works spanning the early 1990s to the present, drawn from private and public collections throughout the world. The catalogue will feature essays by Maggie Nelson, Alexander Nemerov, Darby English, and Johanna Burton.

Organized by Elisabeth Sussman, Curator and Sondra Gilman Curator of Photography, Whitney Museum of American Art, and David Joselit, Distinguished Professor, Graduate Center, City University of New York, with Kelly Long, curatorial assistant, Whitney Museum of American Art.

Pope.L: Instigation, Aspiration, Perspiration
Opens October/November 2019

Pope.L: Instigation, Aspiration, Perspiration is a trio of complementary exhibitions organized by the Whitney, The Museum of Modern Art, and Public Art Fund. For his Whitney presentation, on the occasion of Pope.L’s receipt of the 2017 Bucksbaum Award, the artist expands upon his ongoing exploration and use of water by creating Choir, a new installation inspired by the fountain, the public arena, and John Cage’s conception of music and sound. In his boundary-breaking practice, Pope.L (b. 1955) ranges from performance to painting, installation, video, sculpture, and theater. Organized by Christopher Y. Lew, Nancy and Fred Poses Curator, with Ambika Trasi, curatorial assistant, Whitney Museum of American Art.

Through a combination of archival videos, photographs, ephemera, sculptural elements, and live actions, the MoMA presentation will focus on thirteen early landmark performances, spanning from 1978-2001, that helped define Pope.L's career and are representative of the artist’s core concerns. Organized by Stuart Comer, Chief Curator, Department of Media and Performance Art, with Danielle A. Jackson, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Media and Performance Art.

Inspired by his provocative, decades-long crawl series, Pope.L will unveil a new publicly-activated crawl on the streets of New York City with Public Art Fund. For this new commission, titled Conquest, he will engage members of the public to explore the potential and power of collective action for his largest and most ambitious crawl to date. The location of this public performance will be announced in early 2019. Organized by Public Art Fund Director & Chief Curator Nicholas Baume.