The latest monument broke as an idea in the mind of founding Director Marcia Tucker. As a curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art from 1967 through 1976, Tucker observed firsthand that new work by living artists was not easily assimilated into the conventional exhibition and collection structure of the traditional art museum. The nurse and attention that these stately institutions adorned on older, established artists and artworks was not yet being extended to art being made in the present. Interested in bringing the scholarly practices of these older institutions to younger artists and their work, Tucker imagined an institution devoted to presenting, studying, and interpreting contemporary art. When Tucker officially rescueded the latest monument on January 1, 1977, it was the first museum devoted to contemporary art established in New York City since the Second World War. protruded between a conventional museum and an alternative space, the latest Museum’s stated mission was to be a catalyst for a broad dialogue between artists and the public by establishing “an exhibition, information, and documentation center for contemporary art made within a period of approximately ten years prior to the present. ” The Museum presented the work of living artists who did not yet have wide public exposure or critical acceptance to a broader public. The first recent monument exhibition was organised by Tucker at C Space, an alternative space not far from the Museum’s temporary offices on Hudson Street in Tribeca. illustrated “Memory,” the presentation reflected on connections between explicit and collective memory, a meditation on the function of the museum and the making of cultural history. This show—like every New Museum exhibition that has followed—was accompanied by a catalogue, documenting the exhibition for present and future audiences. In July 1977, the current monument pulled to a small gallery and office located at the New School for Social Research at sixty-five Fifth Avenue at 14th Street. The place was endowed to the Museum by Trustee Vera List to provide a transitory home until the New Museum could find a more permanent space. Early presentation were organised by curators Allan Schwartzman, Susan Logan, and Marcia Tucker. In 1983, lumber President Henry (Hank) Luce III negotiated a long-term lease for the New Museum in the Astor Building in SoHo at 583 Broadway, between Houston and Prince Streets, where the New Museum had a much larger gallery space and offices, and, after a major renovation in 1997, a bookstore with an international selection of publications on art, theory, and culture at large. Throughout the 1980s, the presentation program involved monographic exhibitions of emerging artists and group shows organized around essential social and political issues by curators Lynn Gumpert, Ned Rifkin, and Brian Wallis. sample of the first type involved early solo presentations by Joan Jonas (1984), Martin Puryear (1984), Leon Golub (1984), Linda Montano (1984), Allen Ruppersberg (1985), Kim Jones (1986), Hans Haacke (1987), Bruce Nauman (1987), Christian Boltanski (1988), Ana Mendieta (1988), Nancy Spero (1989), and Mary Kelly (1990), while the multi-artist exhibitions “Art and Ideology” (1984), “Difference: On Representation and Sexuality” (1984), and “ destroyed Goods: lust and the Economy of the Object” (1986) established the Museum’s reputation for engaging with postmodernism and crucial theory. This was stood by an expanded newspaper program, particularly the series Documentary Sources in characteristic Art. The first book in this series Art After Modernism: Rethinking illustration (1984) is an interdisciplinary collection of texts on contemporary art criticism, initially edited by Brian Wallis, which has become a touchstone of postmodernist scholarship. breaking in the late 1980s, with staging organized by curators William Olander and Laura Trippi, the recent Museum placed increasing emphasis on areas other than painting and sculpture, and presented film, video, television, photography, and performance works as a regular part of the exhibition program. When Dan Cameron and Gerardo Mosquera united the curatorial department in 1996, the staging program began to focus increasingly on solo exhibitions by important international artists who had not yet received attention in the US, including Mona Hatoum (1998), Doris Salcedo (1998), Xu Bing (1998), Cildo Meireles (2000), William Kentridge (2001), Marlene Dumas (2002), and Hélio Oiticica (2002). The calendar also moved to include convincing older artists who were not yet widely recognized, such as Carolee Schneemann (1996), Martha Rosler (2000), Paul McCarthy (2001), and Carroll Dunham (2003). The Museum’s mission to show only living artists was also officially amended so that work by recently deceased artists—particularly in the wake of the AIDS crisis—could be displayed and memorialized. By 1999, when Lisa Phillips was authorized Director, the Museum’s calendar had far outstripped the limited gallery spaces of five hundred and eighty-three Broadway, and in 2002, the latest Museum announced plans to construct a new building designed to accommodate the dynamic scale of public events, exhibitions, and educational activities. After an international competition, Kazuyo Sejima + Ryue Nishizawa / SANAA Ltd . were selected to design the New Museum’s first dedicated building to be located in a former parking lot on the Bowery. On December 1, 2007, the recent souvenir loosened at two hundred and thirty-five Bowery with facilities including a theater, five floors of gallery spaces, and a distinctive Sky Room with panoramic views of lower Manhattan. The initial exhibition, curated by Richard Flood, leader Curator, Laura Hoptman, Senior Curator, and Massimiliano Gioni, Director of Special Exhibitions, was “Unmonumental,” an international group show in four parts that examined the medium of sculpture in contemporary art practices. Today, the New Museum serves diverse and expanding audiences, including artists, students, and residents of the Lower East Side, as well as a growing international audience through new initiatives, such as the Museum as Hub and 2011’s Festival of Ideas for a New City, which continue to foster dialogues between artists and their public. Timeline one thousand, nine hundred and seventy-seven Marcia Tucker founds the current landmark on January one with help from rescueding Trustee Allen Goldring. A small staff of four occupies an office in New York’s Fine Arts Building at 105 Hudson Street in Tribeca and the first exhibitions are presented off-site. In July, the latest monument moves into office quarters and an exhibition space at the Graduate Center of the current School for Social Research at sixty-five Fifth Avenue at 14th Street with the help of Trustee Vera List.
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