The works selected for this installation highlight the debates around economics, politics, gender, and ethnicity that have permeated artistic practices since the late 1960s. Including approximately 130 works drawn from all of the Museum’s curatorial departments, the installation features a variety of approaches to art-making and follows a chronological path. The exhibition begins with works such as a haunting “body print” by David Hammons (1969), which depicts the artist in an act of prayer, and Robert Rauschenberg’s Currents (1970), a sixty-foot-long screenprint based on newspaper clippings. Concluding the show are two projects that explore larger themes of humanity and loss through current events: Huma Bhabha’s expansive print series Reconstructions (2007), in which the artist memorializes lost civilizations in her native Pakistan, and Paul Chan’s Waiting for Godot (2007), a project based on the artist’s restaging of Samuel Beckett’s play in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.
The exhibition is organized by Kathy Halbreich, MoMA Associate Director, and Christophe Cherix, Curator, Department of Prints and Illustrated Books.