Hammer Highlights 2016: HAMMER10 Member Picks
'Tis the season to reflect! This week, three of our HAMMER10 members look back at their favorite Hammer memories from the past year.
February brought us Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933-1957, the first comprehensive museum exhibition in the United States about the experimental liberal arts college where influential artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, John Cage, Josef and Anni Albers, and Merce Cunningham studied and taught. A popular, immersive, and memorable exhibition, Leap Before You Look was HAMMER10 member Matt Jensen’s favorite Hammer highlight of 2016.
"It was so comprehensive, every time I visited I found a piece I hadn’t seen before. And the programming was so immersive. Seeing the dance performances and attending the concerts, you really got a feel for what attending the college could have been like."
2016 also marked the Hammer’s third iteration of our biennial exhibition Made in L.A. Titled Made in L.A. 2016: a, the, though, only, the exhibition continued to highlight the practices of artists working throughout Los Angeles and surrounding areas. This stunning exhibition gave us HAMMER10 member favorites like Rafa Esparza’s brilliant installation on the terrace and Huguette Caland’s unforgettable caftans, but it was Adam Linder’s work as a dancer and choreographer that won the hearts of many—including the Mohn Award judges who granted the dancer and choreographer the $100,000 Mohn Award honoring artistic excellence—and HAMMER10 member Sahel.
"I loved Adam’s work, and as a fan of dance, it was validating to see performance art get recognized in such a big way. I loved being able to vote for my favorite artist. It made me feel like more than just a spectator in the art world, but a participant, too."
While the Hammer hosts hundreds of programs throughout the year with something for everyone nearly any night of the week, an evening with Maggie Nelson was HAMMER10 member Michael’s favorite Hammer highlight. Critic, author, poet, National Book Award winner, and 2016 MacArthur Fellow Maggie Nelson dazzled with her 2015 genre-bending memoir The Argonauts and joined us for a reading and discussion with author and UCLA professor Mona Simpson.
"I’ve long been a fan of Maggie’s work. The Argonauts was captivating, and it was such a thrill to see her speak about it live."