Fall 2019–Fall 2020


Catherine Opie. Dyke. 1993. Chromogenic color print, 40 × 30" (101.6 × 76.2 cm). Committee on Photography Fund and gift of Agnes Gund. © 2019 Catherine Opie
  • MoMA, Floor 2, 208 The David Geffen Wing

In the 1990s, as the culture wars raged, many artists turned to representing themselves and their communities through alternative modes of portraiture, asserting their identities and presence. Photography and video allowed for a diaristic approach, capturing change over time, and life as an ongoing performance. In painting, artists suffused art-historical images with a sense of their own selfhood, making the past startlingly current. Sculpture became a means of exploring the body under pressure. With the rise of the Internet, cable television, and the 24-hour news cycle, national and international traumas—such as the Los Angeles riots, the rampant global spread of the AIDS epidemic, and the first Iraq war— became public theater. In this context, the self became both a reflection of and a defense against the culture in which it was produced, prompting artists to collage public and private concerns. Epitomizing the spirit of the time, Chris Ofili stated, “I try to bring all that I am to my work.”

Organized by Roxana Marcoci, The David Dechman Senior Curator, Department of Photography and Paulina Pobocha, Associate Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture, with Giampaolo Bianconi, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Media and Performance.

53 works online


Installation images

How we identified these works

In 2018–19, MoMA collaborated with Google Arts & Culture Lab on a project using machine learning to identify artworks in installation photos. That project has concluded, and works are now being identified by MoMA staff.

If you notice an error, please contact us at [email protected].


If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

MoMA licenses archival audio and select out of copyright film clips from our film collection. At this time, MoMA produced video cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. All requests to license archival audio or out of copyright film clips should be addressed to Scala Archives at [email protected]. Motion picture film stills cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For access to motion picture film stills for research purposes, please contact the Film Study Center at [email protected]. For more information about film loans and our Circulating Film and Video Library, please visit https://www.moma.org/research/circulating-film.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication, please email [email protected]. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to [email protected].


This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to [email protected].