Crossing Brooklyn: Art from Bushwick, Bed-Stuy, and Beyond

When 3 Oct 2014 - 4 Jan 2015
Where Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway Brooklyn
New York, NY 11238-6052
United States
Enquiry (718) 638-5000

The Brooklyn Museum continues its long tradition of focusing on Brooklyn-based artists with a major survey featuring more than one hundred works by thirty-five artists or artist groups who live and/or work in Brooklyn. Crossing Brooklyn: Art from Bushwick, Bed-Stuy, and Beyond, on view from October 3, 2014, through January 4, 2015, will feature work in virtually every medium, including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, installation, video, and performance. While most of the exhibition will take place in the galleries and on the grounds of the Brooklyn Museum, there will also be programming off-site in the streets, waterways, and other public spaces of Brooklyn.

The exhibition has been organized by Eugenie Tsai, John and Barbara Vogelstein Curator of Contemporary Art, and Rujeko Hockley, Assistant Curator. As suggested by the exhibition title, itself inspired by Brooklynite Walt Whitman’s poem Crossing Brooklyn Ferry, the organizers have traversed the borough, making more than one hundred studio visits to locations from Bushwick to Bay Ridge. They have selected artists at all career levels, from emerging to established, representing the range and diversity of Brooklyn’s many artistic communities.

Focusing on artists with an expansive practice, one that is engaged with the world, Crossing Brooklyn is in part a response to a desire among some contemporary artists to expand their attention and practice, having an impact beyond both the studio and the museum, whether through public or private action, the use of found or collected objects, educational or interactive events, etc. Additionally, while acknowledging Brooklyn’s lately heightened profile, Crossing Brooklyn presents a long view and a multigenerational picture of the borough’s artistic communities, acknowledging, as well, Brooklyn’s long established role as a creative center. To make their selection, Tsai and Hockley drew upon their extensive knowledge of the borough, as well as a wide-ranging network of unofficial advisors composed of artists, colleagues, and other creative professionals.

Much of the work featured in Crossing Brooklyn is nontraditional, taking on hybrid forms that defy easy categorization. Examples include a working farm on the grounds of the Museum, which will be inaugurated by a greenmarket on-site in the months leading up to the opening of the exhibition; a panorama composed of 365 consecutive views of the sky, individually painted over the course of a year; a riderless, life-size equestrian monument made of cork, upon which viewers are asked to make their mark by leaving a note,etc.; and a photographic series recording the migratory paths—real and imagined, past and recent, forced and voluntary—of an African-American family.

Crossing Brooklyn will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue that will include a roundtable conversation among long-time Brooklyn artists Coco Fusco, Byron Kim, Wangechi Mutu, Thomas Roma, Fred Tomaselli, and Martha Wilson discussing the evolution of the visual arts in a borough that contains one of the highest concentrations of artists in the world.

The Brooklyn Museum has a long history of collecting and presenting the work of Brooklyn-based artists. In the 1930s it launched the Gallery for Living Artists, which was devoted specifically to Brooklyn artists, and in the 1980s it organized the Working in Brooklyn series, which culminated in Open House: Working in Brooklyn (2004), a group exhibition held in conjunction with the opening of the Museum’s spectacular new entrance on Eastern Parkway. More recently, the Raw/Cooked exhibition series (2011–13) presented solo exhibitions by Brooklyn artists selected via recommendations from a group of established Brooklyn

artists; GO: a community-curated open studio project (2012) presented a crowd-sourced exhibition; and the Museum has presented solo exhibitions of work by Brooklyn-based artists such as The Bruce High Quality Foundation, Wangechi Mutu, Lorna Simpson, Fred Tomaselli, and Mickalene Thomas. Crossing Brooklyn extends these traditions and also reflects the Museum’s commitment to reach beyond its walls, actively engaging surrounding communities.

Following is a list of artists participating in Crossing Brooklyn:

Yuji Agematsu
Janine Antoni
Nobutaka Aozaki
Daniel Bejar
BFAMFAPhD (Julian Boilen, Susan Jahoda, Blair Murphy, Vicky Virgin, Lika Volkova, and Caroline Woolard)
Linda Goode Bryant and Project EATS
Aisha Cousins
Cynthia Daignault
Elastic City (Todd Shalom)
Zachary Fabri
Brendan Fernandes
Gordon Hall
Drew Hamilton
Heather Hart
Pablo Helguera
David Horvitz
Yoko Inoue
Steffani Jemison
Matthew Jensen
Nina Katchadourian
McKendree Key
William Lamson
Deana Lawson
Shaun Leonardo
Marie Lorenz
Miguel Luciano
Shantell Martin
Mary Mattingly
Kambui Olujimi
Paul Ramírez Jonas
Duke Riley
Lisa Sigal
Xaviera Simmons
Tatlo (Sara Jimenez, Michael Watson, Jade Yumang)
Bryan Zanisnik

Crossing Brooklyn: Art from Bushwick, Bed-Stuy, and Beyond is organized by Eugenie Tsai, John and Barbara Vogelstein Curator of Contemporary Art, and Rujeko Hockley, Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art, Brooklyn Museum.

Photo courtesy of the organiser/s

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