Jul 17th 2021

An Initiative of Toward Common Cause

July 17 – December 12, 2021

Carrie Mae Weems: A Land of Broken Dreams is presented by Logan Center Exhibitions in conjunction with the multi-site exhibition Toward Common Cause: Art, Social Change, and the MacArthur Fellows Program at 40, which explores the extent to which certain resources—air, land, water, and even culture—can be held in common. Raising questions about inclusion, exclusion, ownership, and rights of access, this project considers art’s vital role in society alongside its calls for vigilance in defending shared resources. Deploying the MacArthur Fellows Program as an “intellectual commons,” Toward Common Cause features new and recontextualized work by twenty-nine visual artists who have been named Fellows since the award program’s founding forty years ago, in 1981.

Carrie Mae Weems’s installation at the Logan Center Gallery features an array of media and objects—photography, video, texts, bric-a-brac, and furniture—through which Weems reimagines the Black Panther Party’s programs for young people in Chicago during the late 1960s and early 1970s. In the main gallery, visitors are invited to browse, sit, and explore a classroom setting replete with desks, chairs, books, a blackboard, View-Masters, and posters of historic Black leaders. A smaller gallery space, designed to resemble a theater, will screen video works by Weems. As a whole, this presentation probes notions of education and ideals for political parties, revolutions, and their leaders.

Carrie Mae Weems: A Land of Broken Dreams is presented by Logan Center Exhibitions in collaboration with the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago and is curated by Abigail Winograd, MacArthur Fellows Program Fortieth Anniversary Exhibition Curator; with Alyssa Brubaker, Exhibitions Manager; and Leigh Fagin, Senior Director of Programming and Engagement. This exhibition is made possible by support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, The Reva and David Logan Foundation, and friends of the Logan Center.

About Carrie Mae Weems

Through image and text, film and performance, and her many convenings with individuals across a multitude of disciplines, Carrie Mae Weems has created a complex body of work that centers on her overarching commitment to helping us better understand our present moment by examining our collective past.

Weems has received numerous awards, grants, and fellowships, including a MacArthur Award; a US Department of State Medal of Arts; a Joseph H. Hazen Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome; a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship; and a Louis Comfort Tiffany Award, among many others. Major solo exhibitions of Weems’s work include Carrie Mae Weems: The Museum Series, Studio Museum in Harlem, New York (2014), and Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video, Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville (2013–14; traveled to: Portland Art Museum, Oregon; Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio; Cantor Center for Visual Arts, Stanford University; Guggenheim Museum, New York).

Her work is in public and private collections around the world, including at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Tate Modern, London; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Weems has been represented by Jack Shainman Gallery, New York. She lives in Syracuse, New York, with her husband, Jeffrey Hoone, who is executive director of Light Work.

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