The New Museum will present the first New York survey show of the work of Nicole Eisenman.
The exhibition is curated by Helga Christoffersen, Assistant Curator, and Massimiliano Gioni, Artistic Director.
One of the most important painters of her generation, Eisenman has developed a distinct figurative language that combines the imaginative with the lucid, the absurd with the banal, and the stereotypical with the countercultural and queer. In her narrative compositions she draws as much from art history as from popular culture, making way for accessible and humorous, yet also critical and poignant images of contemporary life. Gathering a body of work produced over the last two decades, Al-ugh-ories pays special attention to the symbolic nature of her depictions of individuals and groups and highlights how the allegorical permeates her oeuvre and fluidly ties the fictional to the autobiographical. Considering Eisenmanâ’s dedication to the history of painting and the ways in which she references artists as diverse as Giotto, Francisco de Goya, Paul Cezanne, Pablo Picasso, and Edvard Munch, the show will also underline how her approach to painting involves a deliberate attempt to counter accepted historical hierarchies through wit and irreverence. Her preoccupation with the figure and the complexity of its gestures and form has in recent years also resulted in a number of large-scale plaster sculptures, a selection of which will be included in this show. With proportions that exceed human scale, these bodiesâ like those in Eisenman’s paintings act out familiar everyday occurrences such as eating, sleeping, walking, or making love, while also exposing human desire to be equally raw and awkward.
Nicole Eisenman was born in Verdun, France, in 1965 and lives and works in New York. In 2014 the Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis mounted a major exhibition of her work, Dear Nemesis, Nicole Eisenman 1993 – 2013, which traveled to the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, in late 2014 and the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego in 2015. Additional solo presentations of her work have taken place at the Jewish Museum, New York (2015); the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, CA (2013); Studio Voltaire, London (2012); the Katzen Arts Center, American University, Washington, DC (2011); the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY (2009); and Kunsthalle ZÃ¼rich (2007). Her work was included in Manifesta 10, St. Petersburg (2014); the 2013 Carnegie International, Pittsburgh; the Whitney Biennial, New York (2012 and 1995); and Prospect.2 New Orleans (2011). Eisenmans work has been featured in numerous recent group exhibitions at institutions including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2015); the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2014); the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, University of Chicago (2014); Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (2014); the New Museum, New York (2013); and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2011). In 2015, Eisenman was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship.