Rediscover The Whitney Museum Today

See the new Whitney Museum expansive permanent collection with American Artist such as: to Jean-Michel Basquiat, Elizabeth Catlett, Romare Bearden, Lorna Simpson
To know where you’re going, you have to know from where you’ve come. 
 
I had the pleasure of previewing the “America is Hard to See” exhibit this past weekend at the Whitney Museum of American Art’s new space, and it was a breath of fresh air. 
 
The Whitney has been closed since October 2014 for its relocation to the Renzo Piano-designed building that befits the institution. Founded by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney in 1930, the museum focuses on acquiring and exhibiting artist from the United States. Today, the Whitney boasts a collection of more than 21,000 pieces of art. 
 
“Hard to See” consists of more than 600 pieces hanging comfortably in the light-strewn galleries overlooking NYC’s Hudson River and tells the American story in chronological order.
 
In short, it is an excellently curated exhibit. At best, it is an art lover’s dream – a walking tour of a survey art class of the best American art. You are able to experience great works from Georgia O’Keefe to Jacob Lawrence to Jean-Michel Basquiat in a matter of minutes.
 
What’s also impressing is the diversity and depth of the Whitney’s permanent collection. The work of art masters like Frank Stella and George Bellows are intermixed with a great number minority artists who usually are left out, including Elizabeth Catlett and Faith Ringgold. The exhibit places these artists on equal footing. 
 
Some highlights included Richard Barthe’s “African Dancer,” which is believed to have been inspired by Langston Hughes’s Danse Africaine poem. Mark Rothko’s “Four Darks in Red” created in 1958 seems to overtake you as you move closer to Mammoth wall-sized canvas. The last piece that brought me full circle was William de Kooning’s “Woman on Bicycle.” This is a work that I studied in college but had never before seen in person. 
 
I urge you to experience the Whitney’s new space — you won’t regret it. Personally, I look forward to visiting time and time again. 
 
If you’re planning to visit, feel free to share your thoughts and your favorite pieces with us. I would like to know what you thought of the museum and its collection.
The Whitney reopened to the public on May 1. “America is Hard to See” runs until Sept. 27, 2015

Exhibition View

AmericaIsHardtoSee

Richmond Barthe, “African Dancer”, 1933, Plaster

AfricanDancer

Willem de Kooning, “Woman and Bicycle”, 1952-53, Oil, enamel and charcoal on linen

WilliamdeKooning_WomanandBicycle

Balcony and Sculpture Garden

WhitneyOutsideview_Sculptures

Norman Lewis, “Untitled”, 1946-48, Oil on melamine laminate

NormanLewisUntitled

Jean-Michel Basquiat, “Hollywood Africans”, 1983, Acrylic and oil stick on canvas

BasquiatAfricanHollywood

Kara Walker, “A Means to An End… A Shadow Drama in Five Acts”, 1995, Etching and aquatint

KaraWalker

Fred Wilson, “Guarded View”, 1991, Wood, paint, steel, and fabric (detail view)

DetailView_FredWilson
Jessica Stafford Davis

Author: Jessica Stafford Davis

The Agora Culture launched in July, 2013 with a private reception in Mclean, Virginia for Mequitta Ahuja, a world-renowned mixed media artist. Subsequently, she co-curated her first exhibition, “Women as Color Light and Form”, with the Galerie Myrtis in Baltimore, Maryland. The exhibition was a part of Network Exhibition Sondheim awards for the 2013 Artscape festival, America’s largest free arts festival. Jessica currently serves on the board at The Washington Project of the Arts and the George Mason University School of Art Council.

Recent Posts

Leave a Comment

STAY UP TO DATE WITH THE LATEST ART NEWS, HOTTEST TRENDS, AND NEW ARRIVALS
STRAIGHT TO YOUR INBOX.
ENTER YOUR NAME
ENTER YOUR E-MAIL
By signing up for the Agora Culture Newsletter you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy