The inaugural FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art opened to the public this week and runs through September 30, with Professor Michelle Grabner of the Painting and Drawing department as its artistic director.
Among the SAIC alumni and faculty members included in FRONT are Casey Ellison (BFA 2009), Alex Jovanovich (BFA 2003), Kerry James Marshall (HON 2017), Martine Syms (BFA 2007), Jennifer Reeder (MFA 1996), Rebecca Shore (BFA 1981), Diane Simpson (BFA 1971, MFA 1979), Tony Tasset (MFA 1985), Siebren Versteeg (BFA 1995), and Associate Professor James Trainor of Film, Video, New Media, and Animation, and Professor Anne Wilson of Fiber and Material Studies.
According to ARTnews, FRONT International has been compared to other major international biennials such as Venice Biennale and Documenta, under Grabner's "expansive" art direction. She curated The Great Lakes Research centered on artists based in the Great Lakes area for the Cleveland Institute of Art as one of the triennial’s designated exhibitions. Smithsonian magazine reports that Grabner sees FRONT as "an experimental collaboration," with each artist bringing "moral, social and emotional perspectives to the conditions that shape the idea of the city."