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Fred Wilson: Afro Kismet

May 15, 2020 - October 4, 2020

Galleries 8 and 9

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Fred Wilson: Afro Kismet, is presented in partnership with Spoleto Festival, USA, and features the internationally acclaimed artist’s most recent body of work originally produced for the 15th Istanbul Biennial. A 1999 MacArthur Foundation “Genius” award winner, Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954) challenges assumptions of history, culture, race, and conventions of display. By reframing objects and cultural symbols, he alters traditional interpretations, encouraging viewers to reconsider social and historical narratives.

In Afro Kismet, Wilson investigates the long-ignored presence of communities of African descent from the time of the Ottoman Empire to the Republic of Turkey. The juxtaposition of recent works by Wilson with works from the 19th century—including Orientalist paintings with African subjects—not only questions notions of universal knowledge and truth, but also sheds light on histories not thoroughly examined. By combining contemporary objects and museum-quality artifacts, Wilson challenges the assumptions of exhibition methodology and art historical scholarship.

This exhibition is sponsored by BlueCross BlueShield, Bank of America, the Jane Smith Turner Foundation, and the Donnelley Foundation.

<i>Eclipse</i>, 2017, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Murano glass, clear blown glass, brass, steel, light bulbs; 78-3/4

Eclipse, 2017, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Murano glass, clear blown glass, brass, steel, light bulbs; 78-3/4" X 57-7/8" X 57-7/8"; AP 1 of 2; Edition of 6 + 2 APs; No. 67245.AP1; ©Fred Wilson, courtesy Pace Gallery

<i>Untitled (Malawi)</i>, 2012, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Acrylic on canvas; 27 x 40 inches each; Edition 1 of 2; Edition of 2 + 1 AP; No. 67346.01; ©Fred Wilson, courtesy Pace Gallery

Untitled (Malawi), 2012, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Acrylic on canvas; 27 x 40 inches each; Edition 1 of 2; Edition of 2 + 1 AP; No. 67346.01; ©Fred Wilson, courtesy Pace Gallery

<i>Trade Winds</i>, 2017, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Plastic globe, die cast metal, and acrylic paint; 18 X 12 X 12

Trade Winds, 2017, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Plastic globe, die cast metal, and acrylic paint; 18 X 12 X 12"; No. 67275; ©Fred Wilson, courtesy Pace Gallery

<i>Black is Beautiful</i>, 2017, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Iznik tiles; 9' 2-13/16

Black is Beautiful, 2017, by Fred Wilson (American, b. 1954); Iznik tiles; 9' 2-13/16" X 19' 2-3/16" X 3/8"; AP 1 of 1; Edition of 3 + 1 AP; No. 67823.AP1; ©Fred Wilson, courtesy Pace Gallery

Sponsors

  • BlueCrossBlueShield
  • Bank of America
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