Blues for Smoke, Museum of Contemporary Art, LA
In a catalogue with the improvisational quality of the music, the final section of Blues for Smoke curator Simpson's essay "This Air" is titled "The Clearing," from a piece by O'Grady of that name in the exhibit, and discusses how the piece echoes the show's themes.
interracial sex, hybridity, photo-diptych, Western dualism, creating space for complexity
A Generous Medium: Photography at Wellesley, 1972-2012
The curator of the Wellesley Davis Museum's 1994 exhibit Body As Measure, in which Miscegenated Family Album was first shown, looks back movingly on her encounter with the work in the artist's studio and on the complexities of purchasing work by an alumna.
1990s, diaspora, diptych, Sisters, present-past mirroring, curatorial issues, gender and racial representation
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
Analysis of O'Grady's 1983 Afro-American Day Parade, Harlem, performance Art Is…, in the groundbreaking exhibit This Will Have Been: Art, Love and Politics in the 1980s, curated by Helen Molesworth. Essay by Jordan Troeller.
carnival, avant-garde performance, Marcel Duchamp, marginalization, high art, democratized art, reconciliation of opposites, Art Is..., Mlle Bourgeoise Noire
Lorraine O'Grady's Persistent, Artpace San Antonio
Rondeau, guest curator of New Works 07.2, Artpace San Antonio, 2007, analyzes O’Grady’s residency project, the 6-channel video installation Persistent, memorializing a local multi-ethnic dance club controversially shut down.
multi-ethnic community, commercial interests, erasure of difference, individuals, memory of place, pop culture
Carolyn Tennant, New Media Director, Hallwalls
Catalogue essay for Beyond/In Western New York on O’Grady’s two-part exhibit: The Clearing: or Cortez and La Malinche, Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings, N. and Me, photomontage diptych, 1991; and her new complement to it: Landscape (Western Hemisphere)
interracial sex, black female subjectivity, censorship, hybridity, Western dualism, simultaneity, Surrealism
Connie Butler, curator; Linda Theung, essayist
Catalogue essay by Linda Theung for WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, which opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, then traveled to the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC; MOMA/PS1, Long Island City, NY; and the Vancouver Art Gallery, British Columbia.
biography, art-critical performance, 1980s art world racism, Just Above Midtown, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, black female subjectivity, hybridity, diptych
Hypocrite Lecteur, Mon Semblable, Mon Frère! Hybrid Viewer, My Difference, Lorraine O’Grady!
Catalogue essay for the group exhibit New Histories, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, MA. 1996. Lia Gangitano and Steven Nelson, eds.
Baudelaire, Jeanne Duval, Picasso, diptych, Fleurs du Mal, Demoiselles d'Avignon, history of modernism, otherness, hybridity, subjectivity, Flowers of Evil and Good
Lorraine O’Grady: The Space Between
Brochure article written for the one-person exhibit “Lorraine O’Grady / MATRIX 127,” The Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT, May 21 – Aug 20, 1995.
Western binarism, cultural hegemony, "both/and", hybridity, black female subjectivity, diptych, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, Miscegenated Family Album, biography
Lorraine O’Grady: Critical Interventions
Catalogue essay for O'Grady's first solo exhibit: "Lorraine O'Grady," photomontages, INTAR Gallery, 420 W 42nd St, NYC, Jan 21-Feb 22, 1991. Includes authoritative account of artist's earlier career.
black genius, performance, "high-cultural warfare", biography, cultural criticism, Just Above Midtown, The Dual Soul, Rivers First Draft, The Black and White Show, Art Is...
piece on Basquiat referencing O'Grady's 1993 Artforum article
ArtInfo executive editor Ben Davis's feature, "Saving Basquiat," points to O'Grady's 1993 Artforum article and highlights the question it raised: Could knowing black fine artists have saved him?
Jean-Michel Basquiat, 1980s art world, Caribbean-Americans, the Black and White Show
Lisa Scanlon on O'Grady's archive at Wellesley College
Associate editor Scanlon, writing on the newly opened Lorrraine O'Grady Papers, the College's first major alumnae archives, calls the collection a means to preserve the records of the artist's "permanent rebellion."
biography, art career overview, archive, Jamaican immigrants, Miscegenated Family Album
unpublished article on New Worlds
The unpublished article by Gosine, a York University (Toronto) professor who'd written earlier on hybridity in O'Grady's work, is a perceptive and detailed analysis of the subject's treatment in her New Worlds show at Alexander Gray, NY.
Caribbean immigrants, both/and, nature and sexuality, Landscape video, The Clearing, The Fir-Palm, hybridity, diptych, "miscegenated thinking"
Jeu de Paume invited blog
Rice's familiarity with O'Grady's work over 30 years results in a theoretically astute and rotundly feminist look at how New Worlds extends the artist's ongoing critique of cultural stability from the lens of the hybridized political-personal and the colonized body.
postcolonial society, Ana Mendieta, displacement, Caribbean immigrants, The Fir-Palm, Landscape video, natural hair, Baudelaire, Miscegenated Family Album
Alana Chloe Esposito, Unnatural Attitudes
A sensitive summary of O'Grady's biography and its effect on her art, Esposito's piece sees the work as emerging from the artist's pressure to understand and become herself.
Franklin Furnace, Eleanor Antin, unanticipated audiences, feminism, guerrilla performance, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, Olympia's Maid, diaspora, BodyGround, Landscape video, First and the Last of the Modernists, history of modernism
Lorraine O'Grady's Hair Stare Fare, Village Voice
Davis's career evaluation and review of New Worlds at Alexander Gray, NY, O'Grady's show comprised of The Fir-Palm, The Clearing, and the projected video Landscape (Western Hemisphere), is suggestively sub-titled "A veteran artist turns identity into abstract art."
cultural identity, honesty, social intelligence, biography, political art, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, Art Is..., Landscape (Western Hemisphere), abstract art, video
Lorraine O’Grady’s Landscape
In a new magazine devoted to artists from the Caribbean and its diaspora, a young Trinidadian-Canadian professor at Toronto’s York University sheds light on the role of hybridity in Landscape (Western Hemisphere) and its complementary work The Clearing
Caribbean, biography, post-colonial subjects, hybridity, aesthetic process, video, simultaneity, both/and, otherness, post-blackness, diaspora
Five from the Whitney Biennial: Lorraine O’Grady
Walleston’s Art in America online interview-feature, published on the day of the V.I.P. reception for the 2010 Whitney Biennial, provided a brief but effective look at the artist's work and career.
political art, Black elegance, feminism, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, Art Is…, Relational Aesthetics, Duchamp, biography
Episode 22: Nefertiti, Devonia, Michael
Complete transcript of podcast by Lucas Livingston, an Egyptologist associated with the Art Institute of Chicago, that discusses Nefertiti/Devonia Evangeline and Miscegenated Family Album in detail. Also a YouTube video with high-quality images.
sisters, ritual, racism in Egyptology, performance, autobiography, Martin Bernal, Black Athena, cross-cultural similarities, Ancient Egyptian history
The Poem Will Resemble You
Mauss’s article for Artforum is, with Wilson’s INTAR catalogue essay, one of the most extended and incisive pieces on O’Grady’s oeuvre to date. It was one-half of a two-article feature that also included O’Grady’s artist portfolio for The Black and White Show.
guerrilla performance, non-art-historical genesis, counter-confessional poetry, collage aesthetic, autobiography, writing in space, RIVERS, framing, political art
Lorraine O’Grady’s “Olympia’s Maid: Reclaiming Black Female Subjectivity”
Seminar paper on need for subjectivity and agency to restore critical judgement in face of knowledge acquisition and production that are compromised forms of power relations. Studio Art Dept, UC Irvine.
Olympia's Maid, white feminism, black female subjectivity, Western dualism, post-modern philosophy, Gayatri Spivak, hybridity, art enlarges political understanding
Biraciality and Nationhood in Contemporary Art
An article on work by artists responding to racial hybridity that features a discussion of O’Grady’s diptych, The Clearing. Published in Third Text: Critical Perspectives on Art and Culture 53, Winter 2000-01, pp 43–54.
1990s, representations of multiraciality, both/and, Tiger Woods, Western dualism, hybridity, race studies, future of race
The Art of Reading: Postcolonial Bodies and Strategic Illegibility
Analytic reading of two “works” — Gayatri Spivak’s description of her clothing, and Lorraine O’Grady’s Flowers of Evil and Good. Unpublished paper read to a symposium at Louisiana State University, March 2000.
postcolonial subjects, political art, visual reading, Flowers of Evil and Good, palimpsest, diptych, Baudelaire, Jeanne Duval, Picasso, performance, layering
Black Female Spectatorship and the Dilemma of Tokenism
An article in dialogue with O’Grady’s “Olympia’s Maid: Reclaiming Black Female Subjectivity.” In Generations: Academic Feminists in Dialogue, Devoney Looser and E. Ann Kaplan, eds. University of Minnesota Press, 1997.
collapsing boundaries, feminism, psychoanalysis, black female spectatorship, Stuart Hall, cultural theory, cultural hegemony, filmmaking, Spike Lee, Hollywood
A West Indian Yankee in Queen Nefertiti’s Court
The first critical article on O'Grady's work as a whole, and still one of the best. Published in New Observations #97: COLOR. September/October 1993. Special issue, edited by ADRIAN PIPER.
coming of age, black middle class, feminism, agency, hybridity, diaspora, guerrilla performance, writing in space, 1980s art world, diptych, photocollage, The Fir-Palm
unpublished slide lecture, A Postmortem on Postmodernism?
Prior to O’Grady’s publication of “Olympia’s Maid,” it tellingly inflects T. Feucht-Haviar’s later paper on subjectivity as a critical category opposing regimes of knowledge acquisition and production based in compromised forms of power relations.
postmodern philosophy, cultural theory, Stuart Hall, post-colonialism, photography, Dracula and the Artist, claiming subject status, art world Euro-centrism
Holland Cotter, Art in Review
Cotter, long familiar with O'Grady's work, points to a new aspect of the photomontages shown in New Worlds, their "deep ambivalence." And his description of the effect of Landscape (Western Hemisphere), the video-projection, is the most allusive yet.
personal-as-political, ethnicity, West Indies, photocollage, diptych, The Clearing, the Fir-Palm, hybridity, ambiguity, conceptual art
Goings On About Town: Art
Considers the New Worlds show relevant in view of the recent shooting of Trayvon Martin.
video, photocollages, The Clearing, black female body, 1990s identity politics, Trayvon Martin, recurrent racial bias issues
Emily Nathan, The New York List
Analysis of New Worlds focusing on how the works' resistance of "easy classification" and their straddling of "artificial divides of genre and type" serve to replicate O'Grady's thoughts on the contemporary world, one "shaped and inflected by miscegenation."
feminism, hybridity, photomontage, diptych, miscegenation, The Fir-Palm, video, The Clearing, interracial couple, colonial history, Landscape (Western Hemisphere)
Lumi Tan, Critics' Picks
A brief, astute statement that indicates O'Grady's intentions in naming her Alexander Gray, NY solo show New Worlds.
Landscape (Western Hemisphere), cultural identity, colonized female body, exoticness, video, photomontage, the Fir-Palm, The Clearing, interracial sexuality
The Moment of Encounter
A film director and Columbia University professor describes her experience seeing Art Is... at Basel Miami, then attending O’Grady’s public conversation with Roselee Goldberg and Sanford Biggers at MOMA three months later. Meditates on O’Grady’s career trajectory.
post-blackness, art world racism, cultural resistance, feminism, avant-garde, confrontational art, career, 1980s art world, Art Basel Miami Beach, Art Is...
Massimiliano Gioni picks... Lorraine O’Grady, Art Is...
Gioni's one-paragraph notice with photo points to ways in which O'Grady's piece in the Alexander Gray booth at Art Basel Miami Beach questions market values. In the publication that carries most weight at the fair.
performance, collective participation, rediscovered artist, photo installation, 1980s art world, exclusion
All the fun of the art fair
Rob Bound’s column on Art Basel Miami Beach features a review of O’Grady’s show and quotes by the artist, called by the British author a rara avis, by whom he is disconcerted.
Alexander Gray Associates, first-time exhibitors, solo shows, money in art world, curating, context, art history, business models, framing, photo installation
Miscegenated Family Album, Artforum Magazine
In Artforum's first review of an O'Grady solo exhibit, Burton sensitively parses the "uneasy symmetry" of the Miscegenated Family Album installation at Alexander Gray Associates, NY.
Nefertiti/Devonia Evangeline, autobiographical art, performance, ideologies of identity, projected pairs, Cibachrome diptychs, uneasy symmetry
Miscegenated Family Album, at Alexander Gray Associates, NYC
Discussion of framing as a technique of meaning in O’Grady’s conceptual photo-installation.
passe-partout, framing, photo installation, diptych, eliminating hierarchy, collapsing boundaries
Miscegenated Family Album, at Alexander Gray Associates, NY
The first New York Times review of a solo show by O’Grady. Lead review in the “Art in Review” section, with a photo of “Sisters I.”
WACK!, solo shows by women, conceptual art, biography, racial hybridization, social and psychological consequences, beyond irony, redemption, diptych
Exhibit reflects downtown dance club
Daily newspaper review of O’Grady’s video installation Persistent, at Artpace, San Antonio, TX, July 2007. A work on dance, music, economics, and race that recalls O’Grady’s own past as a club dancer and rock critic.
cross-cultural community, real estate agenda, career, music, green screen, video wall projections, ghost dancers
Les Fleurs Duval, on ArtNet.com
Sirmans' review of "Studies: for a work-in-progress on Charles Baudelaire, the first Modernist poet, and his Haitian-born wife Jeanne Duval" analyzes O'Grady's conceptual oeuvre and her mid-90s computer use in order to deconstruct and reconstruct accepted reality.
1990s, Baudelaire, Picasso, historical erasure, modernism, West Indian immigrants, diptych, linked narratives, familial history, computer art, reconstructed reality
Studies for Flowers of Evil and Good, at Thomas Erben, NY
Lengthy, historically aware review of O'Grady's first NY show of digital cibachrome studies for this work, in Review Magazine, vol 4, no 3, October 15, 1998, pp 6-7.
Baudelaire, history of modernism, diptych, Jeanne Duval, Picasso, primitive art, hybridity, otherness, appropriation, competing histories
Shadow Boxing with the Status Quo
Review of "Lorraine O'Grady, The Space Between, MATRIX/127," The Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT, May 21-Aug 20, 1995. Discusses the two-part exhibit: Miscegenated Family Album and debut installation of Mlle Bourgeoise Noire.
biography, guerrilla performance, black female subjectivity, hybridity, Western dualism, writing in space, diptych
Gretchen Faust, New York in Review
Excellent review of O'Grady's first solo exhibit, at INTAR Gallery. Faust confesses: "Every once and awhile I come across a show that really demands more time and space consideration." Special focus on performance docs in the photomontage show.
autobiographical art, political art, collapsing boundaries, photocollage, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, art critical performance, RIVERS, Art Is…, Miscegenated Family Album, context
Art Is . . .
Highlighted box review, taking a retrospective look at O’Grady’s 1983 performance Art Is.... In “Sniper’s Nest,” Z Magazine, July-August 1988, p 102
parade, performance, avant-garde, black female subjectivity, class, art world, context
Hannah Feldman on This Will Have Been, MCA Chicago
This generally laudatory review of a groundbreaking exhibit on art of the 1980s features special attention on O'Grady's piece in the exhibit, Art Is…, seen as encapsulating the problematic of curator Helen Molesworth's strategy.
debt of 1980s art to 1970s feminism, exceeding limits of individual works by intertwining themes, Art Is... encapsulates show's issues, cultural hegemony privileges certain subjectivities, audience as subject
Juliette Soulez on the Paris Triennale
In French, a review of the Triennale that discusses Miscegenated Family Album and the way in which it creates a space in which to "render visible a class invisible up to now."
curating as essay writing, interdisciplinary, socio-cultural phenomena in different registers, personal comparisons via contested images, making the invisible visible
The First and the Last of the Modernists, in "Agitated Histories"
Two writers respond to the piece quite similarly from different points of view. In the "Critical Reflections" section of THE Magazine, and online at Visual Art Source.
First and the Last of the Modernists, "thought experiment", strange historical pairings, subtle political subtexts, lovely compositions
Tori Bush on Lorraine O'Grady in The Best of Prospect.2: Part 1
In the online magazine of the Contemporary Visual Arts Association of New Orleans, the writer says of Art Is… in Prospect.2 that the frame "not only asked 'What is art?' but also 'Who chooses what is represented and how is it perceived'" by different audiences?
harbinger of identity politics in art, disallowing exclusion, avant-garde art, seeing themselves, New Orleans African American Museum
Malik Gaines—in frieze, “Looking Forward, Looking Back”
Gaines’s end-of-year review looks at Los Angeles and examines the blurring boundaries between art and entertainment. Its pointed commentary on The First and the Last of the Modernists’ image strategies was the most perceptive on the piece to date.
Los Angeles art world, entertainment-postindustrial-complex, art civilization, thoughtful approaches to mass-image production, Whitney Biennial, Michael Jackson
Three articles on Manifesta 8
At the close of 2010, O’Grady was in Manifesta 8, the roving European Biennial of Contemporary Art, in Murcia, Spain. In a show whose failures raised more interesting questions than its successes, the location of her piece may have interrogated the curators’ intentions.
critical premise ignored, non-collaborative collaboration, non-dialogical dialogue, deradicalized radicals, non-North African presence, more failures than successes
11 Hopped-Up Art World Anecdotes from “Max’s Kansas City” Book
When her rejected 1973 review of the night Bob Marley led in for Bruce Springsteen at Max’s was finally published, in an art book, it was a rare chance for two of O’Grady careers---rock critic and conceptual artist-- to meet, as in this artinfo.com piece.
pre-art career, 1960s-70s New York, pop culture, the Boss-to-be
A More Female and More Discreet Whitney Biennial. . .
Original Spanish, plus English translation, of article in Spain’s equivalent to the New York Times. The review contains a fuller-than-usual discussion of the significance of O’Grady’s installation.
female majority, previously ignored but now recognized, neither feminist art nor odes to youth, First and the Last of the Modernists, evolution and transformation, parallelism
Selected press on O’Grady in the Biennial
A compilation of 18 selected and conflicting mentions of Lorraine O’Grady’s piece in the 2010 Whitney Biennial press provides an opportunity to compare responses to The First and the Last of the Modernists and parse their differences.
adult perspective, category-dodging, Dorian Grey-like photos, unsettling feeling, ballsy sweep, absurd title, sublime contrast, ideas both subtle and in-your-face, floppy grilled cheese, defining moments, ponderous, a curious series, identity, intimate and egalitarian celebrity, white superiority, at home in the night
Francesco Bonami, 2010
Transcript excerpt of a two-minute section from the 8-minute interview in which Francesco Bonami, chief curator of the 2010 Whitney Biennial, speaks about O’Grady’s piece and the room it shared with Bruce High Quality Foundation.
American Dream, collective group, First and the Last of the Modernists, two fathers of modernity, Baudelaire, Michael Jackson, one young artist and one old, summarize spirit of the Biennial
On Re.act.feminism @ Akademie der Künste, Berlin
Review of feminist art show with 25 artists in exhibition, plus 80 in video archive, makes special mention of O’Grady and three other artists, including Valie Export, Yoko Ono, and Gabrielle Stötzer.
protest art, Lucy Lippard, Yoko Ono, Valie Export, Mlle Bourgeoise Noire, 1980s New York art world, art world racism
WACK! Feminist Art Strikes Back
Feature article with photo describes O’Grady presenting her work on the artist gallery tour during the opening of WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution at the Vancouver Art Gallery on October 5.
uncontextualized work, lack of signage, many voices needed to define WACK! exhibition, curatorial critique, critical performance, art world apartheid, black artist timidity
‘Wack!’ The Art of Feminism as It First Took Shape
Opening of the first major museum show of feminist art at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Holland Cotter’s feature-length review was illustrated by four works, including Mlle Bourgeoise Noire.
an art movement that was many movements, not Feminism but feminisms, women geniuses, video, performance, conceptual art, post-modernism, art-world racism, class
Holland Cotter, Art in Review
A review of three simultaneous shows presented by the Daniel Reich Gallery, NY, which singles out O'Grady for special mention in the third, "Between the Lines," curated by artist Nick Mauss at the Chelsea Hotel.
three galleries, three group shows, one of the most interesting gallery programs in New York, one of the most interesting American conceptual artists around
Wellesley’s ‘Body’ also has a brain
Review of The Body As Measure, The Davis Museum and Cultural Center, Wellesley College, Wellesley, MA, Sep 23 – Dec 18, 1994. Refers to O’Grady’s first exhibition of Miscegenated Family Album as “the most extraordinary work in the show.”
Judith Hoos-Fox, curation, family relationships, diptych, juxtaposition, parallel poses, paired moods, re-contextualizing history, Thucydides, the body
“Dialogues,” Just Above Midtown Gallery
Patricia S. Jones discusses a downtown gallery performance series at Just Above Midtown, NYC, Oct 1980 in a late 70s-early 80s annual journal. Article makes special note of O’Grady’s first performance of Nefertiti/Devonia Evangeline
Just Above Midtown, Dialogues show, performance series, Downtown arts groups, connecting histories, using Egyptian motifs to explicate imaginative lives, Ishmael Reed
Now Dig This! From LA to NY Symposium, MOMA
Unusually complete and profusely illustrated record of the symposium by a non-artist who allows many issues to emerge.
Lorraine O'Grady Papers, Wellesley College Library
Front page article on the college website about the artist's visit to campus for the celebration of the opening of her archive and to give a lecture.
Curators converse on This Will Have Been
Conversation between curator Helen Molesworth and assistant curator Bartholomew Ryan about the making of This Will Have Been: Art, Love and Politics in the 1980s. Includes interesting comments on the delayed recognition of both O'Grady and Peter Hujar.
Invitation to exhibit in K. Acker: The Office
For a show on experimental writer, radical feminist and punk culture icon Kathy Acker, the curator’s emailed request to O’Grady to exhibit Rivers, First Draft, the first such invitation the piece had received, contained a one-paragraph summary of the 1982 performance and its relevance to Acker.
Wall Text, Carolyn Tennant, New Media Director, Hallwalls
Two complementary pieces, The Clearing, 1991, and Landscape (Western Hemisphere), 2010, were connected via the concept of the bridge, both in music and in O’Grady’s phrase, “Wherever I stand, I find I have to build a bridge to some other place."
Object of the Month, August 2010: Miscegenated Family Album
Patrick Amsellem, Associate Curator of Photography, blogs a tribute to Miscegenated Family Album. In an analysis of the work’s intellectual and emotional success at the museum, Amsellem writes that MFA “immediately became a favorite."
Lorraine O’Grady meet Martin Margiela
Fashion blogger locates an amusing connection between Mlle Bourgeoise Noire and Maison Martin Margiela.
Wall Text, Miscegenated Family Album
James Rondeau, curator of contemporary art at the first museum to purchase the Miscegenated Family Album installation, wrote a model wall text to introduce the work to general audiences in the Permanent Collection gallery it shared with Felix Gonzalez-Torres.
DJ JJ Lopez's email invite to Persistent opening at Artpace San Antonio, TX
The founder of the “diggindeepquartet” DJ collective and lead DJ of the closed Davenport Lounge in San Antonio — and O’Grady’s collaborator on the installation — emails a description of Persistent to his list.
“White Skin, Black Masks”: Fetishism and Les Demoiselles d’Avignon
Handout on O’Grady’s “unmasking” as a response to the critical tradition of fetishizing the fetish. Written to accompany “Studies for Flower of Evil and Good” in New Histories, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, MA. Oct 23,1996–Jan 5, 1997.
A Legacy of Silence
Handout on the historical and critical treatment of Jeanne Duval, accompanying “Studies for Flower of Evil and Good” in New Histories, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, MA. Oct 23, 1996–Jan 5, 1997. Curator: Milena Kalinovska.
The Object of History and the History of Objects
Handout written by a professor of Greek and Latin for the premiere of O’Grady’s installation Miscegenated Family Album in Body As Measure, The Davis Museum and Cultural Center, Wellesley, MA, Oct-Nov 1994.
© 2009 Lorraine O'Grady | All rights reserved.