Michelle Grabner Outlines Biennial Themes in the New York Times
On February 27 New York Times critic Carol Vogel outlined six major themes in the upcoming 2014 Whitney Biennial, opening Friday, March 7. SAIC faculty member Michelle Grabner (Painting and Drawing) is among the Biennial's three curators, each of whom will present “a distinct vision” on one of the museum’s three floors. Vogel cites the resurgence of an Arts and Crafts aesthetic as a major trend, highlighting ceramic works from alumnus Sterling Ruby (BFA 2002). "As so much moves to the digital world, there is a movement of slowing art and life down," Grabner explains. Vogel also notes the dominant presence of female painters in this years' survey, among them alumni Molly Zuckerman-Hartung (MFA 2007) and Rebecca Morris (MFA 1994). “I am focusing on a handful of women artists who take on the authority of abstract painting—its history, its ambition and its relationship to power and gender,” Grabner says. “I wanted to put them together to underscore how different the language of abstract painting can be.” The 2014 Whitney Biennial, which features a record number of artists from the SAIC community (no less than 17 of the 103 total participants), runs through May 25.