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Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon

  • New Museum of Contemporary Art 235 Bowery New York, NY, 10002 United States (map)

Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon,” a Major Exhibition Investigating Gender’s Place in Contemporary Art and Culture

New York, NY…This fall the New Museum will present “Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon,” a major exhibition investigating gender’s place in contemporary art and culture at a moment of political upheaval and renewed culture wars. The exhibition features an intergenerational group of artists who explore gender beyond the binary to usher in more fluid and inclusive expressions of identity. Occupying the three main floors of the New Museum, the exhibition will be on view from September 27, 2017, to January 21, 2018.

The New Museum has been committed to urgent ideas since its inception, devoting many exhibitions and programs over the years to issues of representation with regard to gender and sexuality: “Extended Sensibilities” (1982), “Difference” (1984–85), “Homo Video” (1986–87), and “Bad Girls” (1994) are just four notable examples. Following in this tradition, and in the Museum’s 40th anniversary year, “Trigger” extends the conversation around identity, considering how even a fluid conception of gender is nonetheless marked by ongoing negotiations of power and cannot be understood outside its complex intersections with race, class, sexuality, and disability. The exhibition’s title, “Trigger,” takes into account that word’s range of meanings, variously problematic and potent; the term evokes both traumatic recall and mechanisms that, set into motion, are capable of igniting radical change.

Textile Artists as part of Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon:

Liz CollinsJosh Faught (b. 1979)’s “The Mauve Decade” (2014), Tuesday Smillie (b. 1981) continues a recent series of textile works that both refer to significant historical protest signs—such as those constructed by Sylvia Rivera, Marsha P. Johnson, and other members of Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries.


Artwork by Liz Collins

Artwork by Liz Collins