The New Museum & Lower East Side Galleries

The New Museum & Lower East Side Galleries

September 11th, 2019:

My visit to The New Museum and several Lower East Side galleries was a day best described by the phrase “sensory overload”. The combination of an exhibit fueled completely by A.S.M.R. and an interactive “fun house” installation had my brain working what felt like overtime by the end of the day; however, I think it is important to explore this underdeveloped world of digital and interactive contemporary art.

Marta Minujín: Menesunda Reloaded

As someone who is interested in Latin American contemporary art, being able to experience a Marta Minujín installation was thrilling. The Argentinian artist has greatly influenced generations of Latin American artists. I find her to be very influential, especially considering that she was creating art that was beyond her time (b. 1943). The exhibition in place at The New Museum is a reconstruction of an original interactive installation from 1965 in Buenos Aires. Originally meant to be a response to street life in Buenos Aires, the reconstruction made its way to the United States and allows its audiences to experience “confusing situations” as defined by the title of the installation La Menesunda. The experience was very much confusing, especially considering I saw the Mika Rottenberg A.S.M.R. exhibition right before. I personally felt that the installation was overwhelming; however, I found the concept to be very fascinating and even more so once I discovered that it had been originally displayed in 1965. Overall, I enjoyed the fact that, although a reconstruction, it showed Marta Minujín’s efforts to combat conventional art and inspire other Latin American artists to do the same.

Meet Me In The Bathroom: The Art Show

I have never really visited galleries until now, so I was not exactly sure what I was going to experience. In reality I did not have any expectations before entering any of the galleries in the Lower East Side. However, even with this lack of expectations, the one word that would describe my reaction when I walked into the Meet Me In The Bathroom exhibition at The Hole is shocked. The gallery was dark and dingy and very much representational of the grunge, rock and roll era in New York City. This exhibition was very much a contrast to the exhibitions I saw at The New Museum and the galleries prior with their white walls and bright colors; however, it was not any less of a sensory experience. This show was provocative and really gave the viewer a way to experience a nitty-gritty period of time in music history.

The Neon Tunnel, from La Menesunda, 1965 (detail). Installation view: “La Menesunda según Marta Minujín” [La Menesunda according to Marta Minujín], Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires, 2015. Courtesy Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires. Photo: Josefina Tommasi
Marta Minujín: Menesunda Reloaded, 2019. Exhibition view: New Museum, New York.
Meet Me In The Bathroom: The Art Show, Curated by Hala Matar and Lizzy Goodman. The Hole x UTA Artist Space, September 4th – 22nd, 2019.
Dash Snow TBT, 2008, Digital C-print, 38 x 56 inches, 97 x 142 cm
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