Wangechi Mutu | Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami



Wangechi Mutu, People in Glass Towers Should not Imagine Us, 2003

Opening Reception: April 17, 2014
On view: April 18 – July 6, 2014

The Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami will present Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey, a comprehensive survey of Wangechi Mutu, a Kenya-born, New York-based artist whose multi-faceted work captures 21st century global sensibility. This retrospective began at the Nasher Museum of Art and will made its way to the Brooklyn Museum from October 2013 to March 2014 and will be at the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University in September 2014. The exhibition includes more than 50 works from the mid-1990s to the present, including a new site-specific mural and a black box theater projection of her newest video. Approximately 30 of the artist’s sketchbook drawings, dating from 1995 to the present, will also be on view, revealing fascinating insight into her creative process.

This exhibit is part of MOCA’s Knight Exhibition Series, which is made possible by a $5 million endowment allowing MOCA to fulfill its mission to present the best new and multimedia work by local and international emerging and experimental artists to a diverse audience.


Wangechi Mutu, Yo Mama, 2003


Wangechi Mutu, One Hundred Lavish Months, 2004

Since earning her M.F.A. from Yale University in 2000, Wangechi Mutu, who trained as both a sculptor and anthropologist, has come to be regarded as one of the most inventive and critically-engaged artists of her generation.  Combining materials and imagery from sources as diverse as African traditions, international politics, the high fashion industry and science fiction, Mutu creates works that depict fantastical worlds as places for profound exploration of race, gender and power. Her work is a critical investigation of issues ranging from colonialism to displacement, ritual, perceptions of Africa and the female form.

Placing centrality on the female form, Wangechi Mutu’s provocative body of work imagines hybrid creatures and surreal landscapes that comment on commercialism, globalization and cultural norms. We are thrilled to be presenting the first solo museum exhibition dedicated to her work.

– Alex Gartenfeld, MOCA Interim Director and Chief Curator

A new site-specific mixed media mural created for the MOCA presentation will welcome visitors into exhibition galleries, which will be transformed into a forest-like environment populated by the installation of large-scale felt trees. MOCA’s Pavilion Gallery will be transformed into a black box theater for the projection of the artist’s first-ever animated video The End of eating Everything, 2013, in which Mutu works with musician Santigold to bring her elaborate collages to life in a magical narrative set in the sky.



The exhibit incorporates all aspects of Mutu’s prolific practice which includes collage, drawing, installation, sculpture, performance and video. Within this setting, Mutu’s iconic collages will be prominently featured, including new commissions and rare early works. Two other videos are featured in the exhibition: Eat Cake, 2012, which addresses ritual and overindulgence and Amazing Grace, 2005, a meditation on the slave trade and displaced populations.


Still from Eat Cake (2012) by Wangechi Mutu

Other features Ciné Kenya has done about Wangechi Mutu include her incredible work as the artistic director for a Pegasus Warning music video here.

Where: Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami

When: April 18 – July 6, 2014,   Monday – Friday: 9am – 6pm

Price: General Admission: $5.00   Students & Seniors: $3.00 for concessions prices go here.



Wangechi Mutu | MCA Exhibition 23 May – 14 August 2013


Discover the diverse practice of Kenyan-born, Brooklyn–based artist Wangechi Mutu in this free major presentation at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia in Sydney featuring collage, drawing, sculpture, installation and video. This will not only be the first time the Kenyan-born, Brooklyn-based artist’s works have been shown in Australia, but also the most comprehensive international survey of her work yet.

Messy splendour – a riot of colour and texture. It’s a combination of things that, on one hand are quite beautiful but on the other, quite abject, confronting and visceral. It’s an extraordinary and strongly bodily experience.
– Senior Curator Rachel Kent
Known primarily for her collages, Mutu examines representations of the black female body in popular media, looking at stereotyping, voyeurism, sexual desire and eroticism. Some collages are small and jewel-like, others are two-metre long sweeping expanses. Be drawn into contemplations on beauty, consumerism, colonialism, race, and gender through Mutu’s exquisite, provocative works. See how she combines drawn elements and image fragments from a variety of media including fashion magazines and ethnographic journals, as well as representations of the female body from pornography, in her collages. These images are then knitted together with rich surface ornamentation: watercolour paints, costume jewelry, fur, bits of plants and beads.
In addition to the collages, Mutu’s new “experiential” installation pieces – complete with elements of sound, light and scent – are to be displayed, transforming the gallery into a “dense sculptural environment”. This will the very first time they have been shown in a major exhibit. Perhaps the highlight of the exhibition will be ‘Exhuming Gluttony: Another Requiem’(2006), which features surfaces groaning with excess, a large banquet table onto which suspended red wine bottles drip their contents creating blood-like blooms. The effect is unsettling, even sinister.

Exhuming Gluttony (Another Requiem), 2011.
Mixed media installation, Animal pelts, wood, bottles, wine, packing tape, and blankets, variable dimensions.
Installation view at Museo Guggenheim Bilbao, 2011.
Courtesy of the artist.

Mutu’s collaged bodies are frequently subjected to strange deformations or embellishments, combining elements of humour, pathos and sexuality in often surprising ways. Collage works featured at the MCA include the Bedroom Masks series, The Ark Collection (2006) of erotic collaged postcards, and the X Ray series (2008) of strangely morphed life forms which sit between human, animal and plant worlds. The single collage Intertwined (2003) extends this theme with its elegant depiction of two conjoined female figures with canine heads.

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Wangechi Mutu: A Fantasic Journey, Nasher Museum of Art

Artist Wangechi Mutu in her Brooklyn studio, 2012. Photo by Kathryn Parker Almanas.


The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University has organized Kenyan artist Wangechi Mutu’s first survey in the United States. The exhibition Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey runs from March 21st to July 21st 2013

Mutu’s work is internationally renowned for exploring sensitive issues like race, colourism, the eroticization of the black female body, colonialism, gender, war, consumerism and globalization. She creates ” mysterious figures pieced together with human, animal, machine and monster parts. She often combines found materials and magazine cutouts with sculpture and painted imagery, sampling from sources as diverse as African traditions, international politics, the fashion industry and science fiction.”

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