In Air at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts in Salt Lake City, sixteen contemporary artists from around the globe illuminate how air connects us to each other and the planet.
July 16–December 11, 2022
Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Salt Lake City
In Air, a dynamic new exhibition on view at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts in Salt Lake City, sixteen contemporary artists from around the globe and region illuminate how air connects us to each other and to the planet. Curated by Whitney Tassie, the exhibition features work that explores air as both substance and subject matter—artworks made from smog, particulate matter, gas masks, and oxygen tanks, along with works of photography, lithography, fiber art, video, and more.
See work by Kim Abeles, Ai Weiwei, Naomi Bebo, Elisabeth Bunker, Virginia Catherall, Nicholas Galanin, Graviky Labs, Ed Kosmicki, Merritt Johnson, Julianknxx, Michael Rakowitz, Daan Roosegaarde and Studio Roosegaarde, Cara Romero, Diego Romero, Anna Tsouhlarakis, and Will Wilson. Their works unpack urgent issues like climate change, police brutality, housing rights, and environmental racism. While Romero’s Evolvers celebrates Indigenous peoples’ deep connection to the land and hope for a human embrace of renewables, it also acknowledges the negative impacts of energy infrastructure on Native lands. Santa Fe-based Diné artist Will Wilson’s photographs document the traumatic impact of uranium mining on generations of Diné people. But Wilson’s massive AIR Lab, a post-apocalyptic take on the hogan, envisions a site for regrowth, functioning in part as a greenhouse for growing plant species that remove toxins from the soil. Hear Wilson’s talk at the UMFA Friday, October 7, at 6:30 pm.
The UMFA has acquired eleven works from the exhibition, including Romero’s Evolvers as well as works by Abeles, Ai, Galanin, Johnson, Diego Romero, Roosegaarde, and Wilson. As part of the exhibition planning process, the UMFA assessed its own impact on air pollution and committed to producing the exhibition in a way that would limit waste and emissions, including replacing vinyl exhibition signage with AIR-INK (made of PM 2.5 and PM 10 particulate matter).
Visit umfa.utah.edu to learn more and to plan your visit.