artnet: 13 Must-See Exhibits at the Museum of American Art in 2022, From Philip Guston’s Long-awaited Investigation to Faith Ringgold’s New York Moment

So here we are. It’s 2022 and you’re looking for a list of the most important art museum exhibitions of the year. You are in the right place! Here’s a rundown of the shows you’ll want to watch through June.


Noah Davis“at the Los Angeles underground museum
Opening January 12, 2022

Noah Davis, The last barbecue (2008). © The Estate of Noah Davis. Courtesy of the Underground Museum.

The late Noah Davis (1983-2015), who co-founded the Underground Museum in Los Angeles with his wife, sculptor Karon Davis, before his untimely death at age 32, is the subject of this exhibition as the museum reopens. to the public after a closure of almost two years. The exhibit, curated by Helen Molesworth and Justen Leroy, examines the seemingly calm everyday scenes Davis painted, as well as other images the museum describes as exercises in “magical realism.”

Charles Ray: Figure Ground“at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
January 31, 2022 – June 5, 2022

Charles Ray, Huck and Jim. Photo: Josh White. Courtesy of Charles Ray and the Matthew Marks Gallery.

For more than 50 years, Charles Ray, one of the greatest living Old Masters, has played with our perceptions, prejudices and ideas about abstraction, although in the latter part of his career he seems to have sided. to be focused on an infallible and sometimes disconcerting realism. This exhibition, which will include 19 works from throughout his career, as well as photographs by the artist, is his first exhibition in a New York museum in 25 years and the first in the world to bring together sculptures from each decade of his professional life. Importantly, this one can also generate some controversy: the exhibition marks the New York City debut of Ray’s sculpture. Huck and Jim, which the Whitney Museum commissioned for its place then rejected, apparently out of fear that his racist and sexual images would offend viewers.


Ulysses Jenkins: Without Your Interpretation“at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles
February 6, 2022 – May 15, 2022

Ulysses Jenkins, Transfer to two zones (1979), still video. Courtesy of the artist and Electronic Arts Intermix.

Pioneering videographer Ulysses Jenkins gets a major retrospective resulting from three years of research, during which curators digitized his massive 50-year-old archive and conducted interviews with the artist and his many collaborators. Among his many friends, teachers and acquaintances were Charles White, Chris Burden, Betye Saar and Kerry James Marshall, who starred in Jenkins’ video. Transfer to two zones (1979). This is the one you won’t want to miss.

Faith Ringgold: American People“at the New Museum, New York
February 17, 2022 – June 5, 2022

Faith Ringgold, American People Series # 18: The Flag Bleeds (1967). © Faith Ringgold / ARS, NY and DACS, London, courtesy ACA Galleries, New York 2021.

Speaking of masters, Faith Ringgold, whose astonishing and sometimes startling visions of life in America have passed under the mainstream radar for too long, receives the retrospective treatment at the New Museum in February. The exhibition will feature his works on fabric, paintings and flexible sculptures to set in the long line leading from the “Harlem Renaissance to the political art of young black artists working today,” according to the museum.

Supernatural America: The Paranormal in American Art“at the Minneapolis Institute of Art
February 19, 2022 – May 15, 2022

Agatha Wojciechowsky, Untitled (detail), (1963). Courtesy of the Steven Day Collection, New York, NY.

The Ghosts That Haunt America are the focus of this traveling group exhibition at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, which will examine how paranormal interests have guided more than 100 artists, including Betye Saar and Grant Wood, from the 18th century to the present day. “You might expect to see ghost images in an exhibit exploring the supernatural, and you will,” said curator Robert Cozzolino. wrote from the show. “But the common thread that connects these diverse artists across generations leads to contact.”


Dakota Modern: The Art of Oscar Howe“at the National Museum of the American Indian, New York
March 11, 2022 – September 11, 2022

Oscar Howe, Umine dance (1958). Courtesy of Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.

Oscar Howe (1915-1983) spent the early years of his career exploring how modernism could coexist with the aesthetics of his native Yanktonai Dakota culture, creating vibrant works that challenged both the contemporary art world and the Sioux traditions in which he developed his craft. The exhibition will retrace his first works, made in the 1930s, when he was still a high school student, until the 1950s and 1960s, when he realized that there was no contradiction between tradition and innovation.

Frédéric Bruly Bouabré: the world untied“at the Museum of Modern Art in New York
March 13, 2022 – August 13, 2022

Frédéric Bruly Bouabré, GBRÉ = GBLÉ Alphabet Bété n ° 118. 1991. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. The Jean Pigozzi Collection of African Art.

Ivorian artist Frédéric Bruly Bouabré (1923-2014), according to MoMA, “had one goal: to record and transmit information about the known universe”. The artist, who began his professional life as a clerk for the French colonial administrators of Senegal, had a prophetic experience in 1948, after which he began to document and record the world around him. And not only: he also invented a writing system for the Bété people of West Africa, a group to which he belonged. This show is the first glimpse of his prodigious production.


Guo Pei: Couture fantasy“to the Legion of Honor, San Francisco
April 16, 2022 – September 5, 2022

Guo Pei, Fashion week in Paris, 2018. Photo courtesy of FAMSF.

Featured by the Legion of Honor as “China’s premier fashion designer,” Guo Pei is perhaps best known in the United States as the designer of Rihanna’s 2015 Met Gala Dress. This show, which features around 80 works from the past 20 years, includes examples of parades from Beijing and Paris, and illustrates how the designer blends ideas drawn from European architecture, Chinese imperial arts, and the botanical world to create grandiose new designs. “Through his extraordinary fashions,” says the museum, “the exhibit reveals Guo Pei’s career trajectory as remarkable but emblematic of China’s emergence as a leader in the fashion world in the early 21st century. century.

Lee Alexander McQueen: spirit, myth, muse“at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art
April 24, 2022 – October 9, 2022

Left: Alexander McQueen, Woman Set (Dress and Leggings), (Spring / Summer 2010). Right: Manuel Cipriano Gomes Mafra, Urn, (around 1865-1887). Both images © Museum Associates / LACMA.

In Southern California, the short but hugely influential career of English fashion designer Alexander McQueen (1969-2010) will be the subject of the first exhibition of his work on the West Coast. The exhibition, which draws on Regina J. Drucker’s fashion collection and LACMA’s permanent collections, will examine McQueen’s craftsmanship and ability to infuse couture looks with whimsical ideas, his vivid imagination and its bold references to the outside world.


Philip Guston Now“at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts
May 1, 2022 – September 1, 2022

Philippe Guston, Paint, smoke, eat (1973). Courtesy of the Stedelijk Museum / © Estate of Philip Guston.

This long-awaited (and already controversial) The exhibition of the work of Philip Guston, delayed by the directors of the museums supposed to welcome it, finally opens at the MFA in Boston. Covering more than 50 years of the artist’s career, it includes around 90 paintings and 30 drawings. But the big question is, how will it be received, and how has it been recontextualized by its conservatives to account for the turmoil that forced its postponement in the first place?

Cezanne“at the Art Institute of Chicago
May 15, 2022 – September 5, 2022

Paul Cézanne, Madame Cézanne on a yellow chair, (1888-90). Courtesy of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Few artists continue to fascinate museologists as much as scholars as much as Paul Cézanne (1839-1906). This life-size retrospective, the first to watch the artist in the United States in over 25 years, is also the first of his work at the Art Institute in over 70 years. Through 90 paintings and 40 watercolors and drawings, the curators hope to reintroduce the artist to a new generation of art lovers, and to present new perspectives on his work from technical analyzes made possible in recent years.

The Double: Identity and Difference in Art since 1900“at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
May 15, 2022 – September 5, 2022

Rachid Johnson, The New Negro Escapist Social and Athletic Club (Emmett), (2008). Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Image: © Rashid Johnson, courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth.

This major exhibition of 120 works, curated by longtime NGA curator James Meyer, is the first to offer a broad insight into repetition, difference and identity in art from the past century and beyond. . With works by 90 artists including Glenn Ligon, Roni Horn, Yinka Shonibare, Nam June Paik, Howardena Pindell, Adrian Piper and Robert Rauschenberg, the exhibition explores how formal repetitions reflect – even create – senses of identity that are multiplying. instead of being singular. .


Canova: Clay sketch“at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
June 11, 2022 – October 9, 2023

Antonio Canova, Adam and Eve mourning the dead Abel (ca. 1818-1822) Gypsotheca Antonio Canova Museum, Possagno, Italy. Photography © Tony Sigel.

The NGA marks the 200th anniversary of the death of neoclassical sculptor Antonio Canova (1757-1822) with an exhibition featuring 40 of his existing sketches in clay, revealing how the artist modeled his works before executing them in marble. Perhaps most impressive, Canova executed several of her sketches within minutes and used them as marketing tools to find new clients.

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