June 1, 2010 - July 30, 2010

Friedman Benda, New York, NY

Other than Beauty will present work by post-war and emerging artists, whose ground-breaking practices have established new paradigms of art-making and new criteria for beauty.

Tracing the emergence of process, performance, language, video, and political action as new or subversive components of artistic expression, the exhibition considers a broad range of artists who have disregarded the primacy of formal and aesthetic beauty. Some works investigate materiality; some are acutely self-reflective, others offer unconventional platforms for mundane or banal aspects of the human predicament. Paradoxically, by pushing the boundaries of meaning and form, these artists have, over time, expanded our ideas of what beauty can be.

The show includes Joseph Beuys, who made art that focused on malleability, transformation, and the possibilities of art to affect social change; Jannis Kounellis and Robert Rauschenberg, who used debris and cultural detritus as artistic materials; Bruce Nauman, and Lawrence Weiner who use text, video, and media; and Robert Gober and Louise Bourgeois, who have expanded the formal properties of sculpture using the potency of everyday objects to express political, social, phenomenological and existential ideas.

Other Than Beauty juxtaposes this first wave of artists with a new generation of international artists like Ai Weiwei, Janine Antoni, Tavares Strachan, Sterling Ruby, and Chitra Ganesh, who came of age in the wake of these developments, and who produce powerful works that continue to challenge our expectations and expand the lexicon of both art and beauty.

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