Weekly Happenings: August 3–10, 2021
Each week, we create a list of exhibitions, screenings, events, and news featuring Creative Capital Awardees of all disciplines. This list can include shows that have recently opened, shows about to close, and noteworthy headlines and interviews that profile artists and their work.
Check out Wu Tsang’s new work at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City, Michelle Handelman’s films at Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, and Sanford Biggers’s quilt work at the California American American Museum in Los Angeles. Plus, this is the last week to see Steffani Jemison’s exhibition at the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati before it closes on 8/8.
Events, Exhibitions, & Screenings
Garrett Bradley directed this intimate docuseries following Naomi Osaka as she explores her cultural roots and navigates her multifaceted identity as a tennis champ and rising leader.
Guadalupe Maravilla & The Sound of Healing
Art21 premieres their moving short documentary film, which provides an intimate look into Guadalupe Maravilla’s process for and activation of his Planeta Abuelx solo exhibition currently on view at Socrates Sculpture Park.
“Hiding in Plain Sight”
Pace Gallery in New York City
Through August 20
This group exhibition brings together 18 international artists who use the language of Minimalism and abstraction to distill complex subjects into forms that reveal new frameworks of meaning, revelation, and resistance for the here and now. Creative Capital Awardee Jessica Vaughn and National Advisory Council Co-Chair Fred Wilson are among the artists with work on view.
Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston-Salem, NC
Through September 26
In this exhibition, Jillian Mayer’s fiberglass sculptures, ceramic forms, and paintings explore how art can become functional during times of disaster or when the planet becomes uninhabitable.
Stumbling over History
Moving in and out of historical research, travel writing, and memoir in his essay Stumbling over History, Kenny Fries investigates the “euthanasia” of people with disabilities in Nazi Germany and how it continues to resonate.
Lynn Hershman Leeson
New Museum in New York City
Through October 3
This exhibition brings together a selection of Lynn Hershman Leeson’s work in drawing, sculpture, video, and photography, along with interactive and net-based works, focusing on themes of transmutation, identity construction, and the evolution of the cyborg.
What We Left Unfinished
Film screenings, in-person and online
Starting August 6
Mariam Ghani’s Creative Capital Project, What We Left Unfinished, looks closely at the era of state-funded Afghan filmmaking during the country’s Communist era, bringing together dozens of writers, actors, and filmmakers to discuss five unfinished, unedited projects produced between 1978 and 1991. The film will be released in physical and virtual theaters in the US on August 6, with Q&A events scheduled.
“These Unruly and Ungovernable Selves”
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art
In-person exhibition with online videos
Through August 15
A multimedia and performance artist, Michelle Handelman creates film installations that draw on her life experiences and those of her performers to confront life and death, pain and pleasure. “These Unruly and Ungovernable Selves” includes the artist’s new video trilogy, The Pandemic Series and two of the artist’s earlier film installations, Irma Vep, The Last Breath, and Candyland.
BLOODSISTERS: LEATHER, DYKES & SADOMASOCHISM
During the early 1990s, San Francisco was the epicenter of body modification and gender nonconformity, with transgender pioneers like Patrick Califia and Tala Brandeis fighting for visibility, alongside the voice of a bold S/M community. Michelle Handelman’s provocative and pioneering documentary BLOODSISTERS captures these queer outlaws in their zeitgeist moment, shot on digital video with an unfiltered rawness that mirrors the activism of the era.
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
Through October 2, 2022
The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago presents the first career-spanning retrospective of the internationally renowned Chicagoan Nick Cave. The exhibition includes Cave’s immersive installations, textural sculptures, impeccably crafted fashion, and dynamic videos and performances.
“OMNISCIENT: Queer Documentation in an Image Culture”
Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art in New York City
Through January, 2022
Creative Capital Director of Artist Initiatives Aliza Shvarts and Awardees Anna Sew Hoy and Carrie Moyer have work in this group exhibition looking at the history of queer iconographies in popular visual culture.
Notations, Holes and Humour
Modern Art in London
Through August 28
Modern Art presents Pope.L’s first solo show in London in more than a decade. The exhibition centers on his ongoing project, Skin Set, a constantly growing and shifting group of text-inflected works that consider the construction of language, identity, and stereotype as notation, hole, and absurdity and humor.
California American American Museum in Los Angeles
Through January 23, 2022
For more than two decades, Los Angeles native Sanford Biggers has been developing a singular body of work that is deeply informed by African American history and traditions. Sanford Biggers: Codeswitch, the first survey of quilt-based works by the New York-based interdisciplinary artist, features nearly fifty pieces that seamlessly weave together references to contemporary art, urban culture, sacred geometry, and more.
dat Black Mermaid Man Lady/The Show
Twin Cities PBS
TV Broadcast and Digital Screening
Twin Cities PBS will broadcast Sharon Bridgforth’s Creative Capital Project, dat Black Mermaid Man Lady/The Show, filmed at Pillsbury House Theatre in 2018. Centered in African-American artistic and cultural traditions, the constantly evolving project supports the creation of spaces that activate communal wisdom and self-determination.
End Over End
Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati
Through August 8
This exhibition brings together two videos, alongside a new suite of kinetic sculptural objects and conceptual drawings on glass reflecting Steffani Jemison’s interest in performance and the politics of embodiment. Together, the objects, drawings, and videos explore the symbolic, expressive, and material implications of the act of “agitation” and “turning.”
Henry Art Gallery in Seattle
In-person exhibition and performances
Through August 15
In this exhibition, Will Rawls activates relationships between language, dance, and image through the fragmentary medium of stop-motion animation. Performances will also take place on Saturdays from 12-3pm ET.
Guggenheim Museum of Art in New York City
Through September 6
Wu Tsang’s new commission, Anthem (2021), was conceived in collaboration with the legendary singer, composer, and transgender activist Beverly Glenn-Copeland. This site-specific installation revolves around an immense, eighty-four-foot curtain sculpture suspended from the oculus with a projected “film-portrait” of Glenn-Copeland improvising and singing passages of his music.
Mothership and Hallowed Be Their Names
Brookfield Place in New York City
Through September 17
Brookfield Place presents two commissioned hand-crochet works by Xenobia Bailey in their Winter Garden Gallery. Mothership, pays homage to the African American homemaker, caregiver, and domestic worker and Hallowed Be Their Names is an installation to celebrate and uplift communities affected by loss.
In the News
“Lynn Hershman Leeson: The Artist Is Prescient”
New York Times
July 8, 2021
The New York Times covers Lynn Hershman Leeson’s exhibition, “Twisted,” at the New Museum. “It’s a strong, smart survey that gives her overdue credit,” writes Jillian Steinhauer. “The show strikes me as akin to a greatest hits album: an excellent introduction for newcomers and a dose of reliable inspiration for those familiar with her work, but not deep enough once you’re tuned into her brilliance.”
“Naomi Osaka To Share Her Story In 3-Part Netflix Documentary Series”
July 8, 2021
Garrett Bradley directs a new 3-part Netflix docuseries about Naomi Osaka. Set to debut on July 16, it follows the global tennis phenom as she experiences a historic two years in the sport and finds her voice both on and off the court.
“Cooking with Artists: Wafaa Bilal”
July 13, 2021
Wafaa Bilal shares his recipe for Najafi Qeema—Iraqi meat and chickpea stew—with MoMA PS1 chef Mina Stone for their series Cooking with Artists. In the video, Bilal talked about a range of subjects including eating in silence, to the practice of feeding a village, to reinventing ritual in a new place.
“How Garrett Bradley Got Inside Naomi Osaka’s Head”
July 15, 2021
Garrett Bradley talks to Vanity Fair about her new Netflix docuseries on tennis star Naomi Osaka. “I really wanted it to feel like we were journeying with her. “It wasn’t a recap of things that we’d already read in the press, or something that you could read in Wikipedia,” says Bradley. “But, how do we really understand Naomi? And how can I make sure that viewers walk away from this actually feeling a deep human connection?”
“‘I’m not Jeff Koons!’ – the endurance crawls, weird texts and guerrilla brilliance of Pope.L”
July 18, 2021
The Guardian interviews Pope.L and looks at his life and career as an artist. They even mention his Creative Capital Project, The Black Factory, in which the artist toured America, asking people to donate items that they associated with Blackness.
“White Male Artist Wants To Know If You’ll Buy His $HT NFTs.”
July 19, 2021
“An exclusive interview with the anonymous figure known only as White Male Artist, behind one of the most provocative NFT art projects to date.” White Male Artist was later revealed to be Creative Capital Awardee Cassils.
“If Something Gives Me the Chills, or If I Ever Think, ‘Is This Too Much?’, Then I Know I Have to Use It”: Michelle Handelman on the 25th Anniversary Rerelease of BloodSisters: Leather, Dykes And Sadomasochism”
July 21, 2021
Michelle Handelman talks to Filmmaker Magazine about the process of creating her groundbreaking film, BloodSisters: Leather, Dykes And Sadomasochism, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year: “When BloodSisters was first released no one in the US would broadcast it. It was too controversial… I always wanted this film to be a historical document of this radical group of leather women who were on the frontlines fighting for sexual freedom, and you can directly trace the de-pathologizing and mainstream visibility back to their activist activities. But unfortunately history’s trajectory is usually two steps step forward, one step back.”
“Meet the Anonymous Artist Who’s Auctioning Off Cans of Their Own Poop Based on the Diets of Major Market Stars at Phillips”
July 22, 2021
Five tins containing excrement based on the diets of famous artists—such as Banksy, Jeff Koons, and Matthew Barney—will be going on sale at Phillips on 7/29, along with 3D renderings of the cans made into NFTs. The project, aptly known as $HT COIN, is the work (and excrement) of an artist going under the guise of “White Male Artist.” Artnet revealed them to be none other than Creative Capital Awardee Cassils.
“A24 Lands Rights To Octavia E. Butler’s ‘Parable Of The Sower’, Setting ‘Time’ Director Garrett Bradley To Helm”
July 26, 2021
Garrett Bradley is set to direct Octavia Butler’s science fiction odyssey Parable Of The Sower. “The project would mark Bradley’s first feature film at a major studio following a run of critically acclaimed documentaries including the Oscar-nominated Time from Amazon Studios.”
“Frieze Impact Prize Winners Announced”
July 27, 2021
Maria Gaspar and Dread Scott are the winners of the inaugural Frieze Impact Prize, in partnership with the Art for Justice Fund and Endeavor Impact. The award recognizes artists contributing to the movement to end mass incarceration in the US and those directly impacted by the system.
“Sanford Biggers Returns to California with a Homespun Medium”
July 29, 2021
Cultured talks to Sanford Biggers about his homecoming solo show of quilt-based works that opens at the California African American Museum on July 28.
“Lighter than Air”
August 1, 2021
Departures interviews the members of disability arts company, Kinetic Light, about collaboration and kinship. Kinetic Light includes Creative Capital Awardee Alice Sheppard, artistic director, choreographer, and dancer; Michael Maag, lighting designer; Laurel Lawson, dancer and choreographic collaborator, costume/makeup designer, software engineer; and Jerron Herman, dancer and choreographic collaborator.