Kerry James Marshall makes his picks from the Met’s collection
Source:The art newspaper Date: 2016-10-21 Size:
When the retrospective on the Chicago artist Kerry James Marshall comes to New York’s……

The Artist Project: Kerry James Marshall (Image: Metropolitan Museum of Art)

When the retrospective on the Chicago artist Kerry James Marshall comes to New York’s Met Breuer on 25 October, it won’t just be the exhibition that is travelling. The painter, who has spent his 36-year career making a prominent place for the black figure within art history, is also selecting objects from the museum’s encyclopaedic collection to take a trip down the street from its home on Fifth Avenue to the Breuer building on Madison.

“There's about 40% of what you want that you’re able to get,” Marshall told The Art Newspaper in an interview ahead of the retrospective’s opening at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago in March. “Even though the Met Breuer is an extension of the Met, each department is highly protective of the things in their domain. And museums have contracts with donors that govern the way things can be used or moved or how long they can be sent out. There’s all that stuff that you don’t know about, that determines what’s on the wall sometimes.”

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres and Workshop, Odalisque in Grisaille

Marshall walked through the museum a few times with the Met’s curator Ian Alteveer, to make his selections. “It was like being in a candy store,” the artist said. And although he might not have been able to secure all the treasures he wanted, he did get some high-profile masterworks for the show, including Ingres’ Odalisque in Grisaille. “That I was shocked by,” Marshall said, a self-described “fan of Ingres”. He chose to highlight the work for the Met’s Artist Project video series last year, calling it “ultra modern” and a work of conceptual art because it exists as a “pure image”.

Other works selected by Marshall span mediums and time periods. Included are paintings by Jacob Lawrence, Romare Bearden, Aaron Douglas, Willem De Kooning and Gerhard Richter, drawings by Albrecht Dürer and Georges Seurat, photographs by Walker Evans and Roy DeCarava, a Senufo oracle figure and a Bamana bull-shaped boli from West Africa, and Japanese woodblock prints. The works will all be displayed together in one gallery on the third floor, but when first considering the installation, Marshall said he would have liked “to have clusters of things from the Met collection stationed at different places [in the exhibition] so there is a constant return to art history”. The connections are still clear, if less incorporated.

[Editor] 孙涵

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