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Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University Acquires Two Works by Andrew Kuo
The More You Know About Me, The More You'll Think Twice Before Calling/I'd Be More Tolerable If I Smoked Weed Because...,” 2011, Courtesy Taxter & Spengemann, New York © Andrew Kuo.

EAST LANSING, MI.- The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University has acquired two works by multidisciplinary artist Andrew Kuo. The works, “Self-Portrait (Rise and Shine),” 2009, and “The More You Know About Me, The More You'll Think Twice Before Calling/I'd Be More Tolerable If I Smoked Weed Because...,” 2011, are the first acquisitions for the new contemporary art museum, which will also assume care for the 7,500 object collection of the university’s former Kresge Art Museum. Dedicated to exploring global contemporary culture and ideas through art, the Zaha Hadid-designed museum will serve as both an educational resource for the campus community and a cultural hub for the central Michigan region. The Broad at MSU is scheduled to open in spring 2012.

The Broad at MSU is the first museum to acquire works by Andrew Kuo, who is known for his diaristic charts that meticulously document life experiences, including graphs mapping his reactions to music and concerts which are regularly featured on the New York Times’ ArtsBeat blog. Kuo’s personal yet universal works bring together his experience as a painter, graphic designer, sculptor, musician and student of art history, referencing modern and postmodern artists including Joseph Albers and Sophie Calle, as well as contemporary culture as embodied by pop music and social media. The New York-based artist was born in Queens, and received his BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1999. Past exhibitions of his work include “This is Killing Me” at Mass MOCA and solo exhibitions at Artists Space in New York and at Franklin Art Works in Minneapolis.

“For a university museum with an educational mission, Kuo’s work offers a fascinating point of entry for a discussion of art history, and insight into the multidisciplinary approach of today’s most original and engaging contemporary artists,” said Michael Rush, the museum’s founding director. “Kuo’s deeply personal storytelling will resonate with diverse audiences, and I’m thrilled that the Broad at MSU will be the first museum to include this exciting young artist in its permanent collection.”

The diptych “The More You Know About Me, The More You'll Think Twice Before Calling/I'd Be More Tolerable If I Smoked Weed Because...,” 2011, is an example of Kuo’s chart paintings documenting the artist’s personal life and emotional experiences in captivating “infographics” incorporating image and text. An homage to Joseph Albers’ “Homage to the Square” series, the work graphs thoughts ranging from “I’m not ready for a family or a future or success or anything good… I’d just ruin it by talking anyway,” to “Online pictures of vintage knock-off Simpsons shirts don’t find themselves.” “Self-Portrait (Rise and Shine),” 2009, depicts the artist staring at himself in the mirror, with the commercial logo on his shirt reversed in the reflection. The humble, palette-knifed painting casts a long view back into the history of portraiture, and forward to emerging multivalent artistic practices. Both works were featured in Kuo’s solo exhibition “My List of Demands” at Taxter & Spengemann in spring 2011.

Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University
The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, a new Zaha Hadid-designed contemporary art museum at Michigan State University, is dedicated to exploring global contemporary culture and ideas through art. Scheduled to open in spring 2012, the dynamic 46,000-square-foot museum will serve as both a teaching institution and a cultural hub for East Lansing and the region. In keeping with MSU’s commitment to applying knowledge to benefit society and further the global common good, the Broad’s program of original and traveling exhibitions, initiatives with living artists, performances, and educational offerings for students, faculty and the community, will make the museum a center for questioning and understanding the modern world through engagement with artists and artwork from around the globe. With a study collection containing 7,500 objects from the Greek and Roman periods through the Renaissance and on to the Modern, the Broad at MSU is uniquely able to contextualize the wide range of contemporary art practices within a firm historical context. The museum is named in honor of Eli and Edythe Broad, longtime supporters of the university who provided the lead gift of $28 million.

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