Tuesday 02/27/24 6:30PM-8PM
New Museum TheaterVisit Us

Outsider Art Fair Presents: Culture and the Uncultivated

Cover Image:

Clockwise from top left: Courtesy David Byrne; Photo Michael Avedon. Courtesy Jean Hanff Korelitz; Courtesy: Warren Zanes; Courtesy: Carlo McCormick

Outsider Art Fair presents a panel discussion featuring David Byrne, Jean Hanff Korelitz, and Warren Zanes, who will consider the term “outsider” and its psychological, social, and political implications. The conversation will be moderated by Carlo McCormick.


This program is free with registration.

About the Speakers

David Byrne is a musician, singer, songwriter, visual artist, and filmmaker. A solo artist for over forty years, he was a founding member, principal songwriter, lead singer, and guitarist for the American band Talking Heads. For the last thirty-five years, his record label, Luaka Bop, has supported visionary musicians from around the world. Recently, he has conceptualized, written music and lyrics for two Broadway productions; Here Lies Love and American Utopia. Byrne’s history with Outsider Art goes back to his selection of an image by Reverend Howard Finster (1916-2001) for the cover of the Talking Heads’ 1985 album Little Creatures, and he continues his ongoing collecting in the field.

Jean Hanff Korelitz is an American novelist, playwright, theater producer and essayist. Much of her most recent novel, The Latecomer (Celadon Books, 2022), takes place in New York City and includes two pivotal scenes that occur at the opening nights of art events—one at the Outsider Art Fair, the other at a Henry Darger exhibition at the American Folk Art Museum. In a New York Times review (May 25, 2022), Allegra Goodman wrote, “This is a novel about collecting and assessing art, objects and experiences. It is therefore a novel about how to see — how to contemplate a painting, how to spot the rare antique in a barn full of junk, how to uncover fraud. Korelitz shows how art reveals itself to viewers and how ownership illuminates character.” 

Warren Zanes, a writer, musician, and Grammy-nominated documentary producer, currently teaches songwriting at New York University. As a teenager, he joined the renowned Boston band The Del Fuegos and made three records for Slash/Warner Bros. Later, Zanes earned his Ph.D in Visual and Cultural Studies at the University of Rochester. He was the Vice President of Education and Public Programs at The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for ten years and Executive Director of the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation. His books include a celebrated biography of Tom Petty and most recently, Nebraska, Deliver Me from Nowhere (Crown, 2023), about Bruce Springsteen’s seminal 1982 album which he recorded on a rudimentary Teac 144 four-track cassette recorder.

Carlo McCormick is a critic and curator based in New York City. For over thirty years he was Senior Editor at Paper Magazine and has been a frequent contributor to numerous mainstream art and pop culture periodicals. His writing has been published in over a hundred books and in a dozen different languages. He has organized exhibitions at museums and galleries across the US, Europe and Asia, and taught at various universities and art schools.


Presented through special arrangement with the Outsider Art Fair.

Support for Education and Public Engagement programs is provided, in part, by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature, and from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Endowment support is provided by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund; the Skadden, Arps Education Programs Fund; and the William Randolph Hearst Endowed Fund for Education Programs at the New Museum.

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