"Pacific Standard Time" Heads East: MoMA PS1 Will Host Hammer Museum's Brainy "Now Dig This!" Exhibition
One of the most talked-about exhibitions from Los Angeles's Pacific Standard Time initiative, the Hammer Museum's "Now Dig This! Art & Black Los Angeles 1960-1980," will be coming to New York this fall. MoMA PS1 has confirmed to ARTINFO that it will host the show from October 2012 to February 2013, though exact dates have not yet been determined. The news was first reported by Jori Finkel on Twitter.
The news comes just as Pacific Standard Time — the 60-plus exhibition extravaganza devoted to the history of postwar art in L.A. — prepares to close on March 31. Up until now, only a handful of the well-reviewed exhibitions were scheduled to travel beyond California, and none were expected to come to New York.
The unapologetically academic exhibition curated by Columbia University professor Kellie Jones — it was born out of Jones's research for a book on the same subject — seeks to tease out the history of the large and prolific black art community living in L.A. between 1960 and 1980. "It's not just about black artists, but about how black people have affected the world," Jones told ARTINFO at the exhibition's L.A. opening. The show features work by 35 artists, including some of Pacific Standard Time's rediscovered stars, such as assemblage artists Betye Saar and John Outterbridge as well as well as sculptor Senga Nengudi.
Among the other Pacific Standard Time exhibitions traveling out of California are LACMA's "ASCO: Elite of the Obscure, a Retrospective," which is currently on view at Williams College, and Ed Kienholz's "Five Car Stud," which will go to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. The Getty's centerpiece exhibition, "Crosscurrents," which focuses on painting and sculpture in L.A. from the 1950s and 60s, is currently on view at the Martin-Gropius-Bau in Berlin. The Getty also offered to send that exhibition to the Whitney Museum in New York, but it declined.
Hammer director Ann Philbin told the Los Angeles Times in November that the show's groundbreaking content made it a hard sell to other institutions. "Usually when you travel shows a museum can commit two years in advance," she said. "It was very hard to travel this show because people didn't know what they were getting. They wanted to see the show first."