Another Tradition: Drawings by Black Artists from the American South
Until 16 January 2022 at The Morgan Library and Museum, 225 Madison Avenue, Manhattan
The exhibition celebrates the acquisition of 11 striking drawings from the Souls Grown Deep Foundation, the Atlanta-based non-profit organisation that works to elevate the presence of Black American artists from the Southern US in museums. The show follows recent presentations of works from the foundation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, but shifts the focus from assemblages and quilts to works on paper, comprising a series of spirited drawings made with watercolour, ballpoint pen, glitter and other materials. Eight artists are represented in the acquisition—including Nellie Mae Rowe, Thornton Dial and Purvis Young—but each has a distinctive voice. While most of the artists had assemblage practices that have been extensively researched and celebrated over the last three decades, the show revalues this quieter but unmissable facet of their practice.
Cannupa Hanska Luger: New Myth
Until 23 October at Garth Greenan Gallery, 545 West 20th Street, Manhattan
The New Mexico-based artist Cannupa Hanska Luger (Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, Lakota) rose to prominence in 2016 for his Mirror Shield Project in Standing Rock, North Dakota—a work that symbolically supported the Dakota Access Pipeline protests amid escalating clashes between demonstrators and the police, comprising a series of mirrored shields that were distributed on-site. Luger’s practice, which extends to film, performance and sculpture, is rooted in resistance. A series of new ceramic and mixed-media sculptures depicting monstrous severed heads and arms, a broken bottle of alcohol and blood-soaked weapons evoke the insidious effect of colonisation on Indigenous culture while signaling the power to persevere. The works are complemented by three wall-sized projections that engulf the space, showing soldiers in appropriated Indigenous regalia preparing for battle in atmospheric landscapes. The video installation is part of Luger’s Future Ancestral Technologies project, an ongoing work the artist has likened to Indigenous science fiction.
Spazio e Forma: Lucio Fontana and Carla Prina
Until 23 October at Shin Gallery, 68 Orchard Street, Manhattan
The late Italian Abstract painter Carla Prina (1911-2008) remains one of the most overlooked figures of the Abstract art movement. Throughout her career, her luminous paintings—informed by Italian Futurism and Concretism—were included in major exhibitions such as the 23rd Venice Biennale in 1942. She exhibited work alongside Lucio Fontana, with whom she became close friends after their first exhibition together, organised by the Salon des Réalités Nouvelles in Paris in 1948. This exhibition rejoins their work, revealing “another side of experimentation in Abstract art”, according to the gallerist Hong Gyu Shin, while allowing Prina’s work “the chance to stand on its own merits”. While Fontana’s signature slashed canvases complement Prina’s colourful gradations in the front room, the show also gives a rightful spotlight to Prina’s paintings. Two rooms are dedicated to 27 of her paintings, marking the largest ever exhibition of her work in the US.