Whitney mania is officially in full-swing. With the opening parties and press previews now done and dusted, the Whitney prepares for their much anticipated opening this weekend. Reviews of the new museum and its inaugural show America is hard to see, have spread like wildfire across media channels and social media feeds are a constant flurry of images. With only a few sleeps to go, here are our top picks from the brand new, shiny museum.
1. The machine-age and the transformation of America
The industrial and mechanization era forever transformed the American landscape in the years following World War I. Skyscrapers, silos and smokestacks became emblems of the modern world. The works featured in “Machine Ornament” perfectly captures the dynamism during that momentous period in time.
2. Georgia O’Keefe, Abstraction (1926)
Beauty in abstraction.
3. Chiura Obata’s World Landscape Series “America” (1930)
A beautiful hybrid of American landscapes executed with traditional Japanese woodblock technique.
4. Lee Krasner, The Seasons (1957)
Created following the death of her husband, Jackson Pollock, Krasner’s explosive and passionate painting is striking in its scale and urgency.
5. Works in the “White Target” gallery
Less is certainly more. Featuring works by Agnes Martin, Jasper Johns, Frank Stella, and Ad Reinhardt.
6. John Cage, Water Music (1952)
Love the typography composition. There are so many layers and you just want to try and decipher it. Cage had employed the ancient Chinese divination text the I Ching, or Book of Changes, to determine the sequence, length and volume of each musical instrument in this piece.
7. Nam June Paik, V-yramid (1982), and Magnet TV (1965)
Always happy to see a Nam Jun Paik. He has not one, but two works in the show.
8. Ed Ruscha, The Old Tool & Die Building (2004)
This painting immediately drew our attention across the room. The asian typography in bright red, blue and green set across the front of the building is weighted heavily by the vast ominous sky hang in above. It’s evokes a sense of desolation and decay, but is powerful in portraying a certain truth in today’s industrial landscape.
9. Cory Arcangel, Super Mario Brothers (2002)
Brings back happy memories of all those hours spend playing Mario on Nintendo back in the day.
10. Views + Art = Winning combination
The stepped outdoor terraces all face toward the city on the East, designed for “people watching”.
Good views, sculptures, fresh air—what more could you ask?
More installation views…
America Is Hard to See at the new Whitney opens from May 1 until Sept 27.