James Voorhies You Just Have to Experience It

4:00 pm - 6:00 pm


James Voorhies You Just Have to Experience It

Book signing follows in the Wexner Center Store

Hear from art historian, curator, and Ohio State alum James Voorhies in this talk that explores the exhibition as a critical form—and artistic medium—in a time of blurred differences between art and entertainment. Voorhies signs copies of his new book Beyond Objecthood (MIT Press) at the Wexner Center Store following the talk.

In Beyond ObjecthoodThe Exhibition as a Critical Form since 1968, Voorhies traces the changing role of the spectator from Minimalism to Relational Art, from New Institutionalism to the present. His narrative is bracketed by a consideration of American artist Robert Smithson’s seminal “non-sites” (which asked spectators to interact with combinations of objects, images, and texts installed in a gallery) and the Swedish curator Maria Lind’s groundbreaking renovations of the exhibition form and museum space into something more active, open, and democratic.

Voorhies’s talk draws a line through these histories by looking at work by Thomas Hirschhorn, Carsten Höller, Anne Imhof, Martha Rosler, Hito Steyerl, Apolonija Šušteršič, and Harald Szeemann at venues such as Documenta, Kunstverein München, Skulptur Projekte Münster, the New Museum, and the Venice Biennale.

James Voorhies received his Ph.D. from the Department of History of Art at the Ohio State University in 2012. He is currently Dean of Fine Arts and associate professor of contemporary art at California College of the Arts in San Francisco. Prior to CCA, he served as the first John R. and Barbara Robinson Family Director of the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts at Harvard University. His recent publications include the reader What Ever Happened to New Institutionalism? (editor, 2016) and Martin Beck: An Organized System of Instructions (2017, both Sternberg Press)

Cosponsored by Ohio State’s Department of History of Art. This talk is made possible by a grant from the College of Arts and Sciences Humanities and Arts Discovery Theme project in support of the working group on Contemporary Art and Its Publics.

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