April 25 – August 11, 2019
DePaul Art Museum
New Age, New Age: Strategies for Survival is an exhibition of work from the last fifteen years by contemporary artists who appropriate, critique, or embrace “New Age” aesthetics and concerns from a 21st century perspective. Emerging in the 1960s and 1970s against a backdrop of war, social strife and a crisis of modernity, the multifaceted New Age “movement” was characterized by alternative approaches to traditional Western culture, with an interest in spirituality, mysticism, holism, and environmentalism. It embodied a complicated conflation of politics, religion, science, social communities, art, music, and self-realization. Often dismissed for its association with drugged out hippies or flower-power children, how can New Age philosophies and practices be reconsidered today as relevant movement for social change and wellness?
Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes, Lise Haller Baggesen, Alun Be, Elijah Burgher, D. Denenge Duyst-Akpem, Whit Forrester, Desirée Holman, Cathy Hsiao, Michiko Itatani, Rashid Johnson, Marva Lee Pitchford-Jolly, Jenny Kendler, Liz Magic Laser, Matt Morris, Shana Moulton, Heidi Norton, Tony Oursler, Mai-Thu Perret, Robert Pruitt, Bob Ross, Luis A. Sahagun, Mindy Rose Schwartz, Suzanne Treister, Rhonda Wheatley, Megan Whitmarsh and Jade Gordon, Saya Woolfalk
As ancient practices and rituals such as crystals, astrology, tarot cards, yoga, and meditation become both trendy commodities and necessary tools for self-care in an increasingly anxious world, how are they reflected in contemporary art making? Where does “New Age” intersect with curandera, Asian, indigenous, and Afro-futurist practices? The exhibition presents works organized within broad themes associated with New Age culture including metaphysical practices, a return to craft and handmade objects, connecting with the natural environment, and imagined communes with a special focus on how women, LGBTQ artists, and people of color use these alternative practices as tools of resistance, empowerment, community, healing, and self-care.
Curated by Julie Rodrigues Widholm, DPAM Director and Chief Curator.