Street Art, Street Life
From 1950s to Now
September 14 to January 25, 2009

Street Art, Street Life: From 1950s to Now examined the street as subject matter, venue, and source of inspiration for artists and photographers from the late 1950s to the present. The exhibition included street photography, documentation of performance, events and artworks presented in the streets, works using material from the street, and examples of street culture. Through works by more than 30 artists, Street Art, Street Life explored a range of themes related to the street such as the street as an arena for political and cultural expression, violence and crime, urban gender roles, advertising and commerce; the street as a counterpoint to museums and other traditional art venues; and the impact of urban drifting or wandering on artistic practice.


Street Art, Street Life explored the street as an art historical subject from a uniquely broad prospective. The exhibition provided the opportunity to see work from earlier decades in a new light and also situate works by younger artists in a rich historical context. The art historical narrative that emerges demonstrated developments and influences within the field of contemporary art as well as a socio-cultural narrative that reveals the changing character of the street.


Street Art, Street Life was guest curated by Lydia Yee.


A fully illustrated catalogue accompanied the exhibition.

Featured Artists: Vito Acconci, Francis Alÿs, Amy Arbus, Joseph Beuys, Sophie Calle, VALIE EXPORT, Robert Frank, Lee Friedlander, David Guzman, Tehching Hsieh, Kimsooja, Wiliam Klein, Nikki S. Lee, Sze Tsung Leong, George Maciunas, Gordan Matta-Clark, Clase Oldenburg, Yoko Ono, Adrian Piper, Robin Rhode, Martha Rosler, Allan Sekula, Jamel Shabazz, David van Tieghem, Jacques de la Villeglé, Garry Winogrand, David Wojnarowicz, and Martin Wong


Street Art, Street Life was made possible by the Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award; JPMorgan Chase Foundation, a MetLife Foundation Museum and Community Connections grant; and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
Additional support has been provided by the Peter Jay Sharp state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities; and Etant donnés: The French-American Fund for Contemporary Art.