The Generational: Younger Than Jesus
235 Bowery, New York
4/8/09 - 7/5/09
Younger Than Jesus is the first edition of The Generational, the New Museum’s new signature triennial. It includes work of fifty artists from twenty-five countries. The artists cannot be older than 33; none were born prior to 1976. The show is curated by Lauren Cornell, Massimiliano Gioni and Laura Hoptman.
The texts below are based on a number of comments I posted on the blog of a local magazine. Dates and times of their original postings are included, as are images found online.
Here's a show that begs to be loved. Anything less would be like kicking a puppy at its first sniff of art stardom. So I knew Jerry Saltz's carefully constructed persona - zeitgeist-er, confidante, ear to the ground, eye on the sparrow - would necessitate a thumbs-up review of this show and on the inauguration of the Nu Mu's ambitious triennial project. Even if he has to hedge his bets with phrases like "flawed but tantalizing" and "despite its clinical spaces and a couple of misfires". Even if he includes a polemical, cautionary first paragraph that states the problem - "received ideas about appropriation, conceptualism, and institutional critique...a cool school, admired by jargon-wielding academics who write barely readable rhetoric" - and then pretends the Nu Mu is the solution to this problem rather than one of its prime exemplars.