Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art & Design, Portland, ME
Built on a trio of traditional painting genres–still life, landscape, and portraiture–American Genre: Contemporary Painting was curated by Michelle Grabner, the renowned Crown Professor and Senior Chair of the Painting and Drawing Department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The group exhibition, mounted at the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art & Design, offered critical balance to the conditions of atemporality, affected responses, and the material turn shaping much of contemporary painting discourse. It featured 52 paintings by 52 American artists, one of whom was Crown.
The exhibition was arranged by subject and form. Genres incorporate and invoke structures of knowledge by performing classification. Deeply embedded in everyday life, genre is conspicuous and powerful in its ability to chart historical continuity and differences through its organizing forces.