The Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland (moCa), the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) in Cincinnati, and Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (Kemper Museum) in Kansas City are co-organizing a major exhibition dedicated to artists living and working throughout Midwestern America. “The Regional” is the first major multi-museum survey dedicated to contemporary artists based in the Midwest, and will feature new and recent work – including several site-responsive commissions – by more than 20 artists working across painting, photography, installation and performance. The exhibit celebrates the artistic and cultural complexity of the Midwest, offering audiences a more comprehensive understanding of this moment in America’s heartland.
“The Regional “is co-curated by Amara Antilla, senior curator at the CAC; Courtenay Finn, chief curator at moCa; and Jade Powers, assistant curator at Kemper Museum. The exhibition premieres at moCa from July 8 through Nov. 7, before traveling to the CAC Dec. 10 through May 1, 2022, and then to Kemper Museum from June 2 through Sept. 11, 2022.
“The Regional is a testament to the range of creative practices and rich cultural heritage alive in the Midwest, and is an important opportunity to support and celebrate local artists,” said the CAC’s Antilla. “The exhibition offers audiences a long glance into the heart of America, which is as complex, varied, and evolving as the artists and works on view in this show. At a time when the concerns of the middle of the country are ever more visible and urgent, this exhibition is a chance to spark dialogue and connection, providing audiences a deeper understanding of the historical foundation and contemporary concerns that ultimately unite us.”
As an initiative dedicated to showcasing and engaging with local cultural communities, “The Regional” will evolve as it tours to each location by inviting additional local artists to participate in related programming and installations at each venue. The exhibition will also be accompanied by a digital catalogue highlighting featured works and exploring a range of historic and contemporary themes informing the show.
Graphic design for the exhibition and catalogue will be led by Columbus, Ohio–based artist and designer Ryland Wharton, who has designed publications, website, and software for a variety of institutions and individuals in the cultural sector, including The Columbus Museum of Art, moCa Cleveland, The Knowlton School of Architecture, and artist Daniel Gordon.
Participating artists include:
- Hellen Ascoli (b. 1984, Guatemala City, Guatemala; lives and works in Madison, WI)
- Lyndon Barrois Jr. (b. 1983, New Orleans, LA; lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA)
- Jonathan Christensen Caballero (b. 1988, Salt Lake City, UT; lives and works in Lawrence, KS)
- Rachel Cox (b. 1984, Irving, TX; lives and works in Iowa City, IA)
- Mara Duvra (b. 1989, Silver Spring, MD; lives and works in Minneapolis, MN)
- Conrad Egyir (b.1989, Accra, Ghana; lives and works in Detroit, MI)
- Isa Gagarin (b. 1986, Guam; lives and works in Minneapolis, MN)
- Rashawn Griffin (b. 1980, Los Angeles; lives and works in Kansas City, MO).
- Dan Gunn (b. 1980, Prairie Village, KS; lives and works in Chicago, IL)
- Matthew Angelo Harrison (b.1989, Detroit, MI; lives and works in Detroit, MI)
- Pao Houa Her (b. 1982, Laos; lives and works in Blaine, MN)
- Anissa Lewis (b. 1974, Covington, KY; lives and works in Cincinnati, OH)
- Dakota Mace (Diné) (b. 1991, Albuquerque, NM; lives and works in Madison, WI)
- Gisela McDaniel (b. 1995, Guam; lives and works in Detroit, MI)
- Lorena Molina (b. 1985, San Salvador, El Salvador; lives and works in Cincinnati, OH)
- Huong Ngo (b. 1979, Hong Kong; lives and works in Chicago, IL)
- B. Ingrid Olson (b. 1987, Denver, CO; lives and works in Chicago, IL)
- Yvonne Osei (b. 1990, Hamburg, Germany; lives and works in St. Louis, MO)
- Natalie Petrosky (b. 1989, Akron, OH; lives and works in Cleveland, OH)
- Devan Shimoyama (b. 1989, Philadelphia, PA; lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA)
- Alice Tippit (b. 1975, Independence, KS; lives and works in Chicago, IL)
- Jordan Weber (b. 1984, Des Moines, IA; lives and works in Des Moines, IA)
- Margo Wolowiec (b. 1985, Detroit, MI; lives and works in Detroit, MI)
- Nikki Woods (b. 1990, Rock Hill, MO; lives and works in Cleveland, OH)
- Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland (July 8-Nov. 7)
- Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati (Dec. 10-May 1, 2022)
- Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City (June 2-Sept. 11, 2022)
In conjunction with the exhibition, moCa, the CAC and Kemper Museum are developing a robust digital catalogue, made available as a free downloadable PDF on each of the institutions’ websites. The catalogue will revisit older histories of the region while also inviting speculation about its future, highlighting certain works in the exhibition, and engaging a range of subjects including gentrification, propaganda, jazz, joy, failure and freedom. The catalogue will include new essays by the exhibition’s curators as well as contributions from scholars, artists and thought leaders.