Itâ€™s the first of May, which means that itâ€™s May Day, International Workerâ€™s Day, and you may as well watch the Bee Gees perform this. It also means that lots of art spaces and museums are getting ready to open their first round of summer shows. In solidarity, I present to you my (rather long) shortlist of whatâ€™s on in St. Louis in the coming weeks.
The River Between Us
Laumeier Sculpture Park
April 13â€“August 25, 2013
A symbiotic traveling exhibition coorganized with Longue Vue House and Gardens in New Orleans, The River Between Us is the latest in a series of projects at Laumeier that explore the theme of place. This time, the mighty Mississippi provides the inspiration for the show, which will feature both new commissions and historical documents. Featured artists include Ken Lum, Allan McCollum, and Alec Soth, among many others.
Rudely Interrupted Evening withÂ Mr. Manners
May 3-5, 2013
Local guerilla curatorial collective The Transients stage shows in recently vacated commercial spaces. Their newest project takes place in the old downtown YMCA, which piques my interest. This weekend-long series of events includes collaborative videos and screenings, a brunchtime screening featuring a twenty-one-gun salute (!), and a performative event by the Archeospiritist Study and Consortion Initiative Illinois (!!).
Andrew James:Â Without the zeroes and ones,Â â€¨the big and the huge don’t mean dick (v.1)
Isolation Room/Gallery Kit
May 3â€“June 1, 2013
Worth going just for the titleâ€”and the fact that Andrew James also runs St. Louisâ€™s excellent Good Citizen Galleryâ€”this show at the petite apartment gallery Isolation Room features a new kinetic object by the artist that, notes curator Daniel McGrath, â€œscoots on wheels like a Minecraft translation of an intravenous drip.â€
Contemporary German Art: Selections from the Permanent Collection
2013 MFA Thesis Exhibition
Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Washington University
May 3â€“September 7, 2013
The Kemper showcases highlights from its formidable collection of contemporary German art, including works by Thomas Bayrle, Isa Genzken, Charline von Heyl, Sergei Jensen, Wolfgang Tillmans, and others. Also on view is the latest MFA Thesis show of work by twenty-three new grads.
Mike Newton: Contact
Fort Gondo Compound for the Arts
May 4â€“June 1, 2013
Iâ€™ve sang Fort Gondoâ€™s praises elsewhere on this site. Its latest exhibition curated by new director Jessica Baran features several videos by New York-based artist Mike Newton that draw inspiration from the question of how to represent and understand interpersonal communication, particularly as it relates to eye contact.
Whole City: St. Louis
Luminary Center for the Arts
May 4â€“25, 2013
The latest in a series of guest-curated exhibitions collectively titled How to Build a World That Wonâ€™t Fall Apart, this show by Minneapolis design studio Works Progress takes the form of an intensive short-term residency that seeks to better understand the cultural landscape of St. Louis. Starting with the question “what makes us whole?” the interviews and conversations that they conduct in the city will be made manifest into an exhibition and free newspaper.
White Flag Projects
May 4â€“June 10, 2013
In typical White Flag fashion, the curatorial conceit remains a mystery, but Iâ€™m listing this for Peter Hujarâ€™s photo of Susan Sontag alone.
Donald Judd: The Colored Works
Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts
May 10, 2013â€“January 4, 2014
Former Chinati Foundation director Marianne Stockebrand curates the first show focused exclusively on Donald Juddâ€™s works in color. Everything in the show was made late in his career between 1984â€“1992. Modern Art Notesâ€™ Tyler Green will speak with Stockebrand on the occasion of the show at the Pulitzer on May 11. Not to be missed.
Hiraki Sawa: Migration
Saint Louis Art Museum
May 3â€“September 8, 2013
Japanese artist Hiraki Sawa presents a new animation in the latest in SLAMâ€™s ongoing New Media Series curated by Tricia Paik.
East Building Expansion
Technically opening on June 29, this long-awaited expansion gives the museumâ€™s substantial collection of modern and contemporary art room to breathe. The inaugural hang will feature much of its strong postwar holdings of works by Joseph Beuys, Gerhard Richter, Sigmar Polke, Anselm Kiefer, and others, as well as an art historical overview of work by the Abstract Expressionists, Minimalists, and more contemporary artists such as Kiki Smith and Julie Mehretu. The expansion also marks the premiere of Stone Sea, a new site-specific commission by Andy Goldsworthy.
Bad at Sports
April 24â€“May 5, 2013
Kerry James Marshall
May 24â€“July 7, 2013
Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis
In a stunning turn of events, CAM has an exhibition by Bad at Sports up right now.Â Duncan and Richard recap their road trip to STLÂ here, and interviews with many of the curators and organizers behind these very shows will be released soon. CAMâ€™s summer season opens with solo shows by Lari Pittman, Mika Taanila, and Kerry James Marshall on May 24.