In this work—a monumental tapestry woven on a computer-controlled jacquard loom—Goshka Macuga surrounds herself with reproductions of over 200 artworks from MoMA’s collection. This image evokes a photograph taken in 1954 of the French politician, publisher, and novelist André Malraux observing the layout of the second book in his trilogy Le Musée imaginaire de la sculpture mondiale (The Imaginary Museum of World Sculpture). Malraux observed that museums “estrange the works they bring together from their original functions and . . . transform even portraits into ‘pictures.’” Inspired by the time she spent in MoMA’s archives, conducting research on the Museum’s collection and exhibition history, Macuga orchestrated her own personal survey, framing the museum as living and open to reinterpretation and reevaluation.
Commissioned on the occasion of The Museum of Modern Art’s 2019 reopening, courtesy the artist and Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York. Organized by Yasmil Raymond, former Associate Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture, with Tara Keny, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Drawings and Prints.