The Dana Schutz Q&A: a major contemporary artist speaks at Transformer Station
CLEVELAND, Ohio – Dana Schutz, the renowned contemporary artist whose recent paintings and drawings are on view at the Transformer Station gallery in Ohio City, is a star with a strong local connection.
Before her swift rise to acclaim in New York in the early 2000s, she earned a bachelor of fine arts degree at the Cleveland Institute of Art, the independent art college located in a city that helped shape her work and career.
In a conversation at the gallery before the opening of her show on Friday, Jan. 19, Schutz, 41, a native of Livonia, MI, spoke about her work and her ties to Cleveland.
She also shared her latest thoughts about the controversy she stirred last spring during the Biennial exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York.
Black artists protested Schutz’s decision to exhibit her painting of the murdered and disfigured Jim Crow victim Emmett Till in an open coffin.
Fri, 02/23/2018 – 7:30pm to 8:45pm
CLEVELAND, Ohio – There’s nothing overtly political about the Cleveland Museum of Art’s show of big, juicy, new paintings and drawings by Dana Schutz that opened Friday night at the Transformer Station gallery in Ohio City.But it’s hard to avoid the sensation that Schutz, who sparked controversy last year at the Whitney Biennial in New York with her painting of Jim Crow murder victim Emmett Till in his coffin, is channeling the existential dread of the Trump era, just as she sought to explore American racism in her contribution to the Whitney show.If the time of Trump means living with threat of nuclear war, presidential tweetstorms and strife over immigration, racial divisions, gender conflict and cutting the social safety net, Schutz seems to be very much in the moment.
And that’s not only because her show is entitled “Eating Atom Bombs,” a clear reference to the potential for a nuclear holocaust.
It’s because the protagonists in her paintings are battered, scarred, riven by fears, doubts and a pervasive sense of precariousness that seems very apt right now.