2010 Whitney Biennial

Friday, April 16, 2010

Curator Gary Carrion-Murayari, one of the two organizers of the 2010 Whitney Biennial, and artist Josephine Meckseper discuss this year’s biennial, the museum’s 75th. The Biennial is the Whitney’s panoramic survey of the latest in American art, and it includes well established artists along with emerging artists from all over the country. Their works range from film and video to photography, painting, sculpture, drawing, installation, performance, and architecture. The Biennial is on view at the Whitney Museum of American Art through May 30.

Check out WNYC’s complete coverage of the Whitney Biennial here.


Gary Carrion-Murayari, and Josephine Meckseper

Comments [10]

Zak Smith

Please ask your commenters to stop commenting on Josephine Meckseper's speech patterns. It makes them seem uptight, petty, out-of-touch with daily life, unaccustomed to hearing any speech not prepared for television, and unconcerned with the actual issues discussed on the show.

Also, it makes them seem (true or not) a little provincial, since a great many intelligent people who learned to speak english as a non-native have phrases they instinctively repeat in order to allow them to find the right word in their language.

Apr. 18 2010 05:27 PM
Gladys Carbo Flower

More power to my comments. When someone in the public eye has an opportunity to use the airwaves to promote a project, it's incumbent on this person to speak with clarity and without distractions. In addition, 'sort of' is not a tic but a terribly distracting bad habit and a crutch that can be corrected by a speech therapist. If that's unaffordable or distasteful, then, for the good of the project, and out of respect to the listeners and host, it's best to stick to one's art and let someone else speak on your behalf. It doesn't serve the artistic project but instead turned off several listeners. Frankly the few minutes I suffered through her inability to speak without inserting her insupportable and unrelenting collection of 'sort of' seemed an eternity.
I've heard many guests from a variety of countries all of whom speak better English than Americans so it has nothing to do with not being from an English speaking country. This was a problem peculiar to this particular person and it upset me to have missed out on an interesting topic. I was doubly offended.
Not everyone is a public speaker and that's not a crime - but if you agree to take the leap, it's wise to know your strengths and weaknesses. I've learned that it's not so much knowing what you do well but rather to know you do badly that matters most.
I wasn't fishing for compliments but simply responding to your blanket assumption that this woman is qualified to screw up an interview because those of us listeners audacious enough to notice and mention the speech problem probably didn't speak as many languages. That statement is not based on any logic and turned out to be false. That was my reason for responding to your comment... and I bet I'm not alone in this sentiment.
Be well.

Apr. 16 2010 11:55 PM
bunker from Queens

That's very impressive, GCF. It's always heartening to learn of someone who spends a great deal of her energy contributing art to society, and who bridges so many languages. I wish you continued success and fulfilment in your work.

My point was simply that complaining publicly about someone's speech tics seems not just petty but misguided. What do we miss out on when we can't get past what are really inconsequential "spoken errors"? Why are we so eager to disqualify people from worth for such minor offenses? Are these kind of comments the best we can muster in response to this admittedly brief (15-mintue) radio story? Not that this is necessarily the context for full-dressed analysis or commentary, but still--speech crutches? It's disheartening to discover that, once again, this is what the potentially community-nurturing spaces of the web are being used for.

Apr. 16 2010 09:14 PM
Gladys Carbo Flower

Dear #6 comment...You underestimate the listener and overestimate the guest who got on the show via an agent; not for her skills as orator.I too am an artist- composer, lyricist, singer, poet, with an MFA from NYU. I speak, read and sing in five languages, I'm fluent in three, have 5 CDs to my credit as leader and vocalist two of which I produced on my own label MODL. My compositions range from jazz, discrete songs, chamber music to a a Requiem Mass. I do legal and other translations, proofreading and editing. I'm blessed or cursed, depending on your point of view, with the ability to detect written or spoken errors. So much for your assumption. I almost forgot - I also sketch. ...Check me out at

Apr. 16 2010 03:26 PM
bunker from Queens

I found Meckseper to be perfectly articulate. Those turned off by her "sort of"s might be encouraged to know that her film in the Bienniel is free of them. How many languages can you speak? How much art have you made?

Speaking of her film--anyone who would form a critique of it based on her verbal comments here, without having seen it first, seems rather unwilling to think about things in a new and different way in the first place.

Anyone vain enough to make an sincere effort to publicize their disinterest in a radio show on that radio show's webpage has a poor grasp on the concept of irony. Satire is a glass in which one sees everything reflected but one's self.

Apr. 16 2010 01:59 PM
Gladys Carbo Flower

and I sort of agree with kbinps...

Apr. 16 2010 01:02 PM
kbinps from park slope

I sort of agree with Ciesse.

Apr. 16 2010 12:57 PM
Gladys Carbo Flower

Iwas sort of listening and sort of rapidly got sort of bored of so many sort of 'sort ofs' I sort of turned the sort of radio sort of off.

Apr. 16 2010 12:56 PM
kbinps from park slope

I was wondering how long it would take Leonard to bring up Mark Rothko. Five minutes. I think that's a record. As for the artist featured- wow! a critique on consumerism that Features the "preposterous" Mall of America. We're breaking new ground here. Thanks for making me think about things in a new and different way. Everything changes but the avant garde.

Apr. 16 2010 12:54 PM

Please ask Josephine Meckseper to stop saying "sort of" seven times every sentence. It makes her seem embarrassingly inarticulate.

Apr. 16 2010 12:48 PM

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