Cut to Swipe, comprised primarily of recent acquisitions by the Department of Media and Performance
Art, features works that appropriate and manipulate images and sound drawn from electronic media
like television, cinema, the recording industry, and the Internet. Ranging from Dara Birnbaum’s
landmark installation PM Magazine (1982) to recent works by Kevin Beasley, Ken Okiishi, Luther Price,
James Richards, Hito Steyerl, and The Otolith Group in collaboration with Chris Marker, the exhibition
highlights a range of responses to the quickly changing nature of images, and their proliferation
through new imaging and distribution technologies. Carving out a space for personal and political
reflection within pervasive streams of information, the works in the exhibition demonstrate the shift
from analog to digital concerns, as artists grapple with defining new forms of materiality, and new
critical approaches in a radically more virtual world.
Cut to Swipe traces key works, produced since the early 1980s, which have pioneered innovative ways
of rearticulating the moving image and appropriated cultural forms within the gallery. If the cut
signifies collage and montage, foundational artistic strategies of the 20th century, the swipe suggests
a 21st-century condition in which images have moved off the screen, dispersed at the flick of a finger
into almost every corner of daily life.
Drawn entirely from the Museum’s collection, Making Music
Modern gathers designs for auditoriums, instruments, and equipment for listening to music, along
with posters, record sleeves, sheet music, and animation.
The exhibition examines alternative
music cultures of the early 20th century, the rise of radio during the interwar period, how design
shaped the “cool” aesthetic of midcentury jazz and hi-fidelity culture, and its role in
countercultural music scenes from pop to punk, and later 20th-century design explorations at the
intersection of art, technology, and perception.
Organized by Stuart Comer, Chief Curator, with Erica Papernik, Assistant Curator, and Leora Morinis,
Curatorial Assistant, Department of Media and Performance Art.
The exhibition is supported by the MoMA Annual Exhibition Fund.