House of Oracles installed at MASSMoCA
Holland Cotter’s New York Times‘ review of the Walker’s Huang Yong Ping show, now on view at MASSMoCA, puts into words what I couldn’t about the show–the almost archeological timelessness of the work, the restive diversity of Huang’s themes and media, and an apparent disinterest in themes and styles that are driving much of the art market’s current fondness for Chinese contemporary art. Two snippets:
It has a complicated sense of newness: you have never seen anything quite like this art before, yet it feels musty and archaic, as if excavated from tombs. And unlike his earlier work, it carries a dense, particular content of stories, myths, esoteric lore and political commentary.
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[H]is art is very different from what topped the charts at Sotheby’s: post-Maoist Pop paintings that adhere to Western formal preferences and to an ideological view of China still locked in cold war formulas.Most of the painters whose work sold at auction have been producing the same images for 20 years. Mr. Huang, restlessly moving among themes and forms, has not. His art is about change, and it changes, and changes again. Duchamp and Cage, those adepts of Taoist modernism, would surely have understood this. And they might have recognized Mr. Huang for what he is: not one of the crouching tigers of the new Chinese art, but one of its hidden dragons.
Check out the visual arts blog for behind-the-scenes glimpses of this Walker exhibition.
Also in the Times: Carol Vogel writes on our new collaboration with the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. A favorite from the Walker collection, Franz Marc’s The Large Blue Horses (1911), will go on long-term loan (along with the Rudolf Belling sculpture Kopf In Messing (Head in Brass) and West African masks and pre-Columbian artifacts from T.B. Walker’s collection) to the MIA, just in time for display in the inaugural installation of their new Michael Graves-designed expansion. In exchange, we’ll borrow select drawings for a 2007 exhibition.
“Our public doesn’t care who owns things,” says Walker director Kathy Halbreich. “They just want the experience of seeing them.”