This Week in Art 6.19-6.25: Tania Bruguera Opens “Talking to Power”



Tania Bruguera. The Francis Effect (2014). Courtesy of Studio Bruguera. Photography by Gaetano Olmo Stuppia.

An unprecedented survey of Tania Bruguera’s 30-year career, Talking to Power / Hablándole al Poder, opened Friday at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) in San Francisco. On view through October, the new exhibition includes free lectures and workshops, many taught by the artist herself, as part of a fully functioning school inside YBCA’s galleries entitled Escuela de Arte Útil​ (School of Useful Art​) (2017).

“The threat of the Trump presidency puts basic assumptions about the identity of this country at risk, and has made the political role of art even more urgent,” says the artist. “This is more relevant than ever, as art allows us to say and do what cannot be said or done under systems of repression and violence.”

Also this week:

  • Theaster Gates’ new 70-seat theater is slated to begin construction this summer, and the artist also revealed plans to rent and renovate Chicago’s oldest “L” station, transforming it into a showcase for the neighborhood’s history, and scheduled to open next year.
  • On Flag Day last Wednesday, Creative Time unfurled the first in a series of 16 flags designed by artists for a project titled Pledges of Allegiance. With each flag flying atop Creative Time’s headquarters in Manhattan for a month, forthcoming flags were designed by artists Tania Bruguera, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Ann Hamilton, Trevor Paglen, and Pedro Reyes.
  • Julie Mehretu and Mary Heilmann were recently inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
  • And Ai Weiwei’s documentary on the refugee crisis, Human Flow, was just acquired by Amazon and will be released on the streaming service this fall.

Events & exhibitions



Humlebæk, Denmark

  • On Thursday, Marina Abramović opened her first major retrospective in Europe at The Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Featuring reperformances and more than 100 works that spans 50 years, including early concept sketches, paintings and sound works, The Cleaner is on view through October 22.

Münster, Germany

  • Pierre Huyghe’s futuristic installation After ALife Ahead, is on view as part of the decennial public sculpture show Skulptur Projekte Münster. Featuring bees, peacocks, and algae, an incubator growing cancer cells, and an augmented reality app, the artist describes the piece as a “haunted living organism” deconstructing the “promise of a digital horizon.” Installed inside an old ice-skating rink, the piece is on view through October 1.

Basel, Switzerland

It’s impossible to include all the incredible exhibitions and art events happening this week in a single post. If there’s something you feel should have been included in today’s roundup, leave a comment below!


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