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© Pawel Althamer The power of Now, 2016. Courtesy of Hudson Valley MOCA
The panel discussion is organized in collaboration with the Polish Cultural Institute New York, and supported by Arts Westchester and Westchester County Government.

Figurative Sculpture in Social Critique: Curating the Straus Family Collection
Panel discussion on Death is Irrelevant: Selections from the Marc and Livia Straus Collection, 1975–2018

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Hudson Valley MOCA
Peekskill, NY | 1701 Main Street ,


To guarantee entry reserve your seat HERE.

This panel discussion will respond to “Death Is Irrelevant,” an exhibition currently on display at Hudson Valley MOCA, which features spectacular figurative works by prominent and internationally recognized artists like Damian Hirst (UK), Sam Jinks (Australia), Kiki Smith, (USA), Folkert de Jong (Netherlands), and the Polish artist Pawel Althamer.

The exhibit’s co-curator Tim Hawkinson and collector and curator Sarena Straus will be joined by The New Museum’s Kraus Family Curator Gary Carrion-Murayari for a conversation moderated by Hyperallergic editor and Minerva Projects founding director Yasmeen Siddiqui to examine the role of figurative sculpture in social critique, with a special focus on Polish artist Pawel Althamer’s “The Power of Now” (2016).

Through video, performance, sculpture and site-specific interventions, Althamer has created an artistic ecosystem in which the body is both medium and message for complex networks of social, political, and conceptual experiences.

Panelists will also consider the “body” of the Straus Family Collection. How does the lived experience of its collectors shape the whole? Reflecting upon their experiences, panelists will discuss the process, challenges, and limitations of curating a private collection into an extensive museum exhibition.

This occasion also celebrates the publication of “Ideas Don't Die,” a curatorial essay on the exhibition by co-curator Tim Hawkinson. This booklet was made possible by the Polish Cultural Institute New York and will be available free to the public for the duration of the exhibition.

Death Is Irrelevant.” curated by Ken Tan, Tim Hawkinson and Marc Straus Gallery in collaboration with the Marc and Livia Straus Family, is a milestone for the museum and the post-industrial region of Hudson Valley, marking the institution’s 15th anniversary and rebranding. The mission to bring works by leading international contemporary artists to the Hudson Valley region continues the philanthropic vision of the museum founders, Livia and Marc Straus.

The exhibit is on view through August 2, 2019.


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