Broadly covering works produced between the 1980s and the present day, Revelations: Examining Democracy focuses on conditions within the United States and examines the fundamental tenets of democracy at large. This exhibition reveals the historical fissures, prevailing social attitudes, and political positions that have led to the rupture of core beliefs such as civil rights, equality, and justice that so many hold to be true. Consisting of works primarily from the MSU Broad collection, the contemporary American artists represented in this constellation of photography, prints, and mixed-media assemblages express a deep desire to recover collective ideals within the national consciousness. Engaging both the public and private spheres, the assembled works pose powerful questions about the experiences of marginalized communities, the role of capital and the position of the common worker, the validity of industrialized warfare, and the excavation of overlooked cultural memories.
Artists in the exhibition include Laylah Ali, Dotty Attie, Dawoud Bey, Neil J. Farkas, Tyree Guyton, Hachivi Edgar Heap of Birds, Jenny Holzer, Byron Kim, David Levinthal, Julie Mehretu, Lorna Simpson, Stan Strembicki, Bruce Thayer, James Van Der Zee, and Carrie Mae Weems.
Revelations: Examining Democracy is organized by the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University and curated by Yesomi Umolu, Assistant Curator. Support for this exhibition is provided by the MSU Broad’s general exhibitions fund.