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Thu, Jul 25, 2019
The internationally recognized space celebrates a milestone moment in presenting contemporary arts across multiple disciplines
In November, 1989, the Wexner Center for the Arts opened its doors for the first time. The multidisciplinary contemporary arts space at The Ohio State University debuted with programs featuring internationally recognized artists such as Laurie Anderson, John Cage, Martha Graham, and Nam June Paik.
For the center’s 30th anniversary year, its curatorial team offers an inspired mix of programming, bringing together artists with whom the Wex has had long, fruitful relationships and emerging creators making their area debut.
As director Johanna Burton notes, “The center has a rich history to draw from and a mandate to support new, thought-provoking work by artists across multiple disciplines. Both are reflected in the programming for the 30th anniversary. The lineup also denotes the importance of makers born or based in Ohio to the contemporary art world.”
Returning to present new work are past Artist Residency Award recipients including visual artists Ann Hamilton and Sadie Benning and filmmakers Jennifer Reeder and John Canemaker. Among those making a first appearance with their work at the Wex are Cameroonian documentarian Rosine Mbakam and boundary-breaking filmmaker Zia Anger, multimedia artist Stanya Kahn, and choreographer-performers nora chipaumire and Miguel Gutierrez.
Events commemorating the anniversary include Picture Lock: 30 Years of Film/Video Residencies at the Wex, a retrospective November 1–4 of work made with support from the center’s Film/Video Studio, and Wex Wide Open, a community day of free programs November 17. In The Box, the Wex’s dedicated space for video presentation, programming for the anniversary year begins with The In Between, a 1990 work made by Carole Ann Klonarides and Michael Owen to commemorate the opening of the center. It screens throughout September.
Information about the diverse range of events to come is contained below and more programming will be announced over the course of the year. Tickets for select events will go on sale to the public August 1. Details are subject to change; visit wexarts.org for the latest updates.
Warhol superstars Nico and Ondine, from The Chelsea Girls Exploded
HERE: Ann Hamilton, Jenny Holzer, Maya Lin
OPENS SEPTEMBER 21
Explore ideas of place through site-specific installations by three Ohio-born artists whose careers align with the 30-year life of the Wex, exhibiting together for the first time.
Artists' Talk: Ann Hamilton, Jenny Holzer, and Maya Lin
As part of a free Fall Exhibition Preview, the artists of HERE will engage in a public discussion about their respective practices and the installations on view in the show.
The Chelsea Girls Exploded
Rarely screened films and footage shot by Andy Warhol offer a fresh perspective on his double-screen masterpiece, The Chelsea Girls, and other works comprising his epic vision of the New York underground scene.
Julia Reichert: 50 Years in Film
Immerse yourself in the work of Ohio's own Emmy-winning, Oscar-nominated filmmaker with a 10-documentary series spanning her career, organized by the Wex and touring to venues nationwide.
On the Front Lines: Performing Afghanistan
A rare and revealing look into the lives of Afghan women and refugees through the works and experiences of playwrights Nushin Arbabzadah and Alia Bano and photographer Joël van Houdt.
Angel Bat Dawid and tha Brothahood
The Chicago-based jazz clarinetist, singer, composer, and self-described “sonic archaeologist” makes her first appearance at the Wex to support her critically acclaimed new album, The Oracle.
The third annual festival connecting central Ohio with some of the world's most inventive nonfiction filmmakers will include visits from directors Rosine Mbakam (Chez Jolie Coiffure) and Matt Wolf (Recorder: The Marian Stokes Project).
DeeDee and Herb Glimcher Lecture: Jeanne Gang
The Wex's annual program of presenting thoughts from the world's leading artists, architects, and designers offers a fascinating conversation with the internationally renowned, Chicago-based MacArthur Fellow.
nora chipaumire, from #PUNK
#PUNK and 100% POP
Inspired by her formative years in Zimbabwe and two of the world's fiercest female music icons, the choreographer presents a live performance album in two programs cocurated by Sharon Udoh.
La galerie des monstres with the Alloy Orchestra
The internationally acclaimed soundtrack trio returns just before Halloween to provide live accompaniment to an eerie, recently restored tale of young lovers who make an ill-fated decision to run away to join the circus.
Picture Lock: 30 Years of Film/Video Residencies at the Wex
The remarkable artists supported by the Wex's Film/Video Studio take center stage in a weekend-long program with appearances by recent visitors and rarely screened works from the postproduction facility's archive.
FILM/VIDEO | ARTIST RESIDENCY AWARD PROJECT
Be among the first to see the new work from animator John Canemaker, supported by a 2016–17 Wexner Center Artist Residency Award. The hand-drawn film is an adaptation of a tale from Sherwood Anderson's short story cycle Winesburg, Ohio.
Wex Wide Open
Get a glimpse of the inner workings of the Wex and interact with its dedicated staff as you enjoy a daylong program of art, music, dance, and short films.
A site-specific meeting of bodies and space adapted for the midcentury architecture of Mershon Auditorium by this Marrakech-born creator.
hear here: artist-run spaces and collectives in Ohio
Artists from past and current collectives and DIY spaces will discuss alternative and experimental models of making and exhibiting work, providing insight into the vitality they bring to their communities and to Ohio's contemporary art ecosystem.
FluxFlow Dance Project
Existing at the intersection of theater, dance, and original music, a new performance work by the Columbus dance company explores the dynamics of oppression and the malleable definitions of freedom.
15th Annual Zoom: Family Film Festival
Grab a seat at the only film fest in central Ohio dedicated to international films for children, complete with family art-making activities and the ever-popular cereal and pajama party.
14th Annual Art & Ecology Exhibition
OPENS DECEMBER 12
See the creative and thoughtful work of high school students who participate in the Wex's annual program to explore the role of the arts in influencing positive environmental change.
Make My Day: Movie Culture in the Age of Reagan
JANUARY 16, 2020
The film critic and historian returns to the Wex for a lecture and film series inspired by his new book, the completion of a trilogy examining how film reflects life.
LaToya Ruby Frazier, Dan Adams, Local 1112 Trustee, 24.7 Years In at GM Lordstown Plant Complex (with his Father and Brothers, Eugene (Red) Adams, Eugene Jr. (Andy) Adams, Bill Adams), from The Last Cruze, 2019.
This Bridge Called My Ass
JANUARY 24–26, 2020
Gutierrez plays on the title of a seminal—and personally influential—anthology of third-wave feminist essays for a provocative work that explores and exploits clichés of queerness and cultural identity.
FEBRUARY 2020 TBD
Benning returns to the site of their first major museum show with an installation that blurs the line between sculpture and painting as it raises questions of narrative and memory.
FEBRUARY 2020 TBD
A Film/Video Studio residency supports the centerpiece of Kahn's upcoming solo exhibition: an allegorical short film following teens who flee the bleak world they're set to inherit and seek a new way forward.
LaToya Ruby Frazier
The Last Cruze
FEBRUARY 2020 TBD
The artist's new body of work captures workers at the General Motors plant in Lordstown, Ohio, as their lives were put on hold by the corporation's contentious decision to “unallocate” the facility.
Back to Back Theatre
The Shadow Whose Prey the Hunter Becomes
FEBRUARY 13–15, 2020
The globally recognized Australian theater group confronts the changing nature of intelligence in contemporary society through a brutally honest public meeting led by five activists with intellectual disabilities.
PERFORMING ARTS | ARTIST RESIDENCY AWARD PROJECT
FEBRUARY 22, 2020
A local treasure pays tribute to the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, as part of a Wex residency that will also include a record release show for her beloved rock ‘n' roll band, Counterfeit Madison.
Cinema Revival:A Festival of Film Restoration
FEBRUARY 27–MARCH 3, 2020
Celebrate the fine art of resurrecting cinematic treasures with the sixth annual fest of classic film screenings and behind-the-scenes stories from the leading voices in film restoration and preservation.
MARCH 7, 2020
The true story of a same-sex penguin couple becoming parents in the Central Park Zoo forms the basis of this charming ballet from Northern Ireland's leading theater company for children.
MARCH 20–22, 2020
Follow the algorithmic theater artist on an unpredictable musical journey through space and time, anchored by the songs “Yesterday” by The Beatles and “Tomorrow,” from the musical Annie.
Triptych (Eyes of One on Another)
APRIL 14, 2020
Through music, images, poetry, and theatrical effects, Bryce Dessner's performance work goes inside the viewfinder of one of the 20th century's greatest and most controversial photographers, Robert Mapplethorpe.
Art on the Brain
The return of the Wex’s collaborative program with Replenish: The Spa Co-op invites you to partake in a relaxing and therapeutic union of art and meditation in the center’s galleries.
Art on the Brain
Interactions with visual art, dance, and music offer individuals with brain/mind trauma such as stroke and PTSD, as well as their caregivers, opportunities to enrich the thinking and feeling mind.
Vets at the Wex
The Wex’s partnership with the Chalmers P. Wylie VA Ambulatory Care Center continues, providing thoughtful engagement with contemporary art in a program customized to meet the needs of service members.
Each year, the Wex welcomes dozens of filmmakers from around the globe. The lineup for the months ahead includes Columbus native and Artist Residency Award winner Jennifer Reeder on September 13–14 and venerable British director Mike Leigh on October 16.
Talks and Tours
Learn about Wex programming and more through first-person access to curators, educators, and artists. Stop in for a gallery tour or join us for events created in collaboration with partners from The Ohio State University and the Columbus community.
The Wex’s unique interdisciplinary learning program returns to connect high school students directly with artists working in a variety of media, including 2019–20 Wex Artist Residency Award recipient Sharon Udoh.
A seminar-style program for high school classes and their teachers promotes deeper understanding of contemporary art through discussion and hands-on interdisciplinary activities with local artists and peers from other schools.
EDUCATION | PERFORMING ARTS
Writing about the Performing Arts
Collaboration with Ohio State’s Department of Dance
With support from the Ratner Distinguished Teaching Award, Professor Karen Eliot and Wex staff will guide a cohort of university students on a yearlong writing initiative in response to the center’s performing arts programming.