NEW YORK, NY.-
This winter the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
presents Nows the Time: Recent Acquisitions, an exhibition bringing together highlights from the museums growing collection of contemporary art that have been acquired over the past five years. On view at the museum for the first time, the selected works reveal developments in painting, sculpture, photography, and installation since the 1970s and are a cross-section of diverse approaches to art making from around the world. Beyond offering a focused, five-year summary of the Guggenheims collecting practices, Nows the Time reflects on the permanent collections broadening global scope as it continues to evolve through the addition of new artists, ideas, and perspectives. The show also reaffirms the museums long-standing commitment to collecting and showing the art of the present.
Featuring works by Ai Weiwei, Walead Beshty, James Casebere, William Cordova, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Christiane Feser, Wayne Gonzales, Mark Grotjahn, Lyle Ashton Harris, Shirazeh Houshiary, Anish Kapoor, Barbara Kruger, Josephine Meckseper, R. H. Quaytman, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Alexandre Singh, Takamatsu Jiro, Hank Willis Thomas, Ryan Trecartin, and Danh Vo, the exhibition unites both established and emerging artists in the collection. They share overarching formal and thematic concerns that cut across traditional aesthetic categories. Many of the artists represented emphasize their working processes as they also explore the material and conceptual possibilities of artistic mediums ranging from abstract painting to digitally manipulated photographs. Even while investigating new possibilities for art in the digital age, much of the work underscores anxieties about everyday experience in a world saturated with electronic media. Whether representing the fragmented modes of perception engendered by online worlds, or insisting on the meditative space of painting and the poetics of objects, the works on view map the contours of a rapidly changing contemporary art world.
The exhibition draws its title from Cordovas nows the time (pacha mama) (2009), which collages together images of recording equipment with elements of paper, gold, hair, and dust in a monument to creativity as essential to the telling of history. Cordovas title takes its inspiration partly from a 1945 Charlie Parker song, Nows the Time, which was recorded during a legendary jazz session that helped to usher in the genre of bebop.
Highlights of the exhibition include Ais China Log (2005), a monumental sculpture of ironwood pillars reclaimed by the artist from a dismantled Qing dynasty temple, and Vos Das Beste oder Nichts (2010), which incorporates the engine of his fathers car, an artifact charged with complex personal and political meanings. Also on view are new additions to the museums renowned collection of contemporary photography, including Takamatsus rarely shown seminal series Photograph of a Photograph (1973), a key work of Japanese Conceptual art; Caseberes important early work, Storefront (1982); and a major 198788 triptych by Harris. Recent developments in abstract painting are also represented by Houshiarys delicately rendered Presence (200607) and Grotjahns Untitled (Blue Painting Light to Dark X) (2006).
Nows the Time: Recent Acquisitions is curated by Lauren Hinkson, Assistant Curator for Collections, and Carmen Hermo, Curatorial Assistant for Collections.