Nicole Eisenman. Courtesy the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Join us for a special conversation between artist Nicole Eisenman and Massimiliano Gioni, Artistic Director of the New Museum. The pair will discuss “Nicole Eisenman: Al-ugh-ories,” the first New York museum survey exhibition of Eisenman’s work, which will be presented at the New Museum. The show will provide an in-depth look at the symbolic nature of the artist’s most striking depictions of individuals and groups—from intimate portraits to more complex narrative scenes—and will highlight how allegory permeates Eisenman’s oeuvre as she fluidly ties the fictional to the autobiographical and the past to the present.
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. From the outset of her career, Eisenman’s investment in painting has led to frequent experimentation in other mediums, and her practice is characterized by visible shifts that mark her effort never to become too comfortable with any one approach to painting. Eisenman’s preoccupation with the figure and the complexity of its gestures and form has resulted in mesmerizing portraits of an array of characters who range from friends and fellow New Yorkers, to imagined heroines, to tragic losers.
About the Artist
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 to 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 Zürich (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). Eisenman’s 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); the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (2014); the New Museum, New York (2013); and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2011). Eisenman is a 2015 MacArthur Fellow.