Tuesday, February 27, 2018
The New Museum’s ‘I Am More Woke Than You’ Triennial
There are 26 artists and artist collectives between the ages of 26 and 36 in the New Museum triennial “Songs for Sabotage.” As is the case with most biennials these days, all are said to be making art that addresses “profound social and political upheaval.” Thus “Songs” is a pro forma biennial, name-checking the heady litany of issues shows like this always address: systemic oppression, Western hegemony, economic injustice, migration, homophobia, racism, sexism, colonialism, and postcolonialism. The bugaboo most maligned by the co-curators — the New Museum’s Gary Carrion-Murayari and Alex Gartenfeld, deputy director and chief curator of the Institute for Contemporary Art in Miami — is something called “late liberalism,” which is ID’d as the “illusion of the seamless flow of capital through global networks via mechanisms of surveillance and control.”
This is all really just curator code for “I’m more woke than you.” A better definition of “late liberalism” in the art world may be tenured and professional curators and academics ignoring the emergencies and needs of artists in their backyards (95 percent of whom could use a break) and instead traveling the world to troubled hot spots like concerned anchormen and anchorwomen to bring back “interventions” and art that supposedly “sabotages” things.
Posted by Morgan Meis at 08:10 AM | Permalink