Our Curators Look Forward to 2009

January 12, 2009

Aside from making and breaking resolutions, the great pastime of every January is to look ahead to what the new year has in store. We thought it would be interesting to see what exhibitions a few of our well-traveled curators are excited to see in 2009. If you're excited about any upcoming exhibitions this year—any time, anywhere—let us know in the comments.

Isa Genzken at the Whitechapel Gallery, London
April 4–June 21, 2009

The Whitechapel Art Gallery opens its expanded facilities in April. I'm excited to see how the Antwerp team of Robbrecht en Daem Architecten have developed this wonderful gallery. The program in their new space starts with a survey of German artist Isa Genzken's work. Genzken's sculpture and installations manage to be both as commanding as any major modernist works of art while also being absolutely antithetical to the slick production values and gargantuan sizes of many of her peers. Since the late 1990s, Genzken has been one of the most convincing contemporary artists to break down and reconfigure the hierarchy between rendered sculpture, photography, architecture, and found objects in disturbing and highly personal ways. I can't wait to see how the Whitechapel narrates one of the most compelling artists of today.
Charlotte Cotton, Head Curator, Photography

Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago
Opens May 16, 2009

I am already looking forward to the opening of the Modern Wing at the Art Institute of Chicago in May. Although Chicago has never been known as the country's leading "art town," the AIC has an absolutely fabulous permanent collection, and this building will finally allow their stellar holdings of modern and contemporary art, photography, and architecture and design to shine as they never have before.
Carol Eliel, Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art

The Secrets of Tomb 10A: Egypt 2000 BC at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
October 18, 2009–January 10, 2010

This show would be a good one to try to see in Boston as it won't be travelling due to the fragility of the materials. It focuses on the delicate painted wood objects found in the Middle Kingdom (2040–1640 BC) of a local governor, Djehutynakht of Bersha. The MFA excavated his tomb in 1915 and found that it contained four beautifully painted coffins, along with jewelry and personal objects. Also included in the tomb were a series of lifelike wooden models of craftsmen, offering-bearers, boats and workshops. The circumstances of the excavation bore additional drama, as the ship carrying the excavation finds back to Boston caught fire at sea. Fortunately the objects were only slightly dampened, and their remarkable state of preservation will be one of the compelling aspects of this exhibition.
Nancy Thomas, Deputy Director, Art Administration and Collections