When the Curtain Never Comes Down

When the Curtain Never Comes Down  | Events Calendar
Marie Lieb (dates unknown, Germany), Installation with torn strips of linen, designed on the floor of the psychiatric hospital where she lived, Germany, c. 1894, 4 5/16 x 6 5/16″, Collection Prinzhorn, Heidelberg, Germany, Inv. #1771_1. © Collection Prinzhorn.

Bill Anhang, Anton “The Great Antonio” Barichievich, Deborah Berger, Arthur Bispo do Rosário, Raimundo Borges Falcão, Léonide Chrol, Joe Coleman, Lonnie Holley, Hans Krüsi, Marie Lieb, Charlie Logan, Raphaël Lonné, Jean Loubressanes, Gustav Mesmer, Eijirō Miyama, Heinrich Anton Müller, Fernando Oreste Nannett,i Vahan Poladian, Melina Riccio, Martial Richoz, Rock N Roll, The Saint Paul Spiritual Holy Temple, Palmerino Sorgente, Giuseppe Versino, Eugene Von Bruenchenhein, Theodor “Theo” Wagemann, and Adolf Wölfli

Upper W Side

Opening from

On View

American Folk Art Museum | 2 Lincoln Square

Most self-taught artists can be perceived as performance artists. Their work is infused with daily rituals, public actions, gestures, and enactments, defining a lifelong artistic practice for which the curtain never comes down. Beyond paintings and sculpture, the exhibition includes ceremonial clothes, kinetic apparatuses, ephemeral installations, writings, fragments of ever-changing constructions, music, recordings, and other statements that have been captured by photographers and filmmakers. The inventive devices and countless strategies these artists configure are expressions of an alter ego, which they assume for its power to transform the world and, above all, to transform their own connections to reality.

Historically, collectors and museums have prioritized artworks that are readily collectible and more conventional in their materials and techniques—an attitude that elucidates a direct relationship between conservation and recognition. The exhibition, which gathers 27 artists from around the world, delves into an underside of self-taught art and art brut, opening a door to the study of its neglected facets.
—Valérie Rousseau, PhD, curator, self-taught art and art brut





Tues - Thurs 11:30 AM - 7:00 PM

Fri 12:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Sat 11:30 AM - 7:00 PM

Sun 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM