• Mel Chin: All Over the Place
    Mel Chin
    Laura Raicovich and Manon Slome
    Queens Museum, Queens
    Apr 08, 2018 to Aug 12, 2018
    Queens Museum

Mel Chin, Safehouse, 2008–10. Courtesy of the artist.

While Mel Chin's oeuvre encompasses a wide variety of media, the common thread throughout his practice is his conceptual rigor, thoughtful historicism, and confronting social justice. This exhibition is organized around several themes that recur throughout Chin's career, notably his ongoing exploration of how power structures embedded in our shared built and lived environments can enact devastating tolls on vulnerable populations. Important new and existing works are installed at Queens Museum and in public spaces throughout New York City, including Flint Fit, which engages with the fallout of widespread lead-poisoning in Flint, Michigan; and Unmoored, a public art project that explores the future of New York's urban design under threats from climate change. These projects are consistent with a conceptual philosophy, which emphasizes the practice of art to include sculpting and bridging the natural, built, and social environments.

Artist Mel Chin is known for the broad range of approaches in his art. Though Chin is classically trained, his art is both analytical and poetic and evades easy classification. Alchemy, botany, and ecology are but a few of the disciplines that intersect in his work. Chin also insinuates art into unlikely places, including destroyed homes, toxic landfills, and even popular television, investigating how art can provoke greater social awareness and responsibility. Major projects like Operation Paydirt and Revival Field also challenge the idea of the artist as the exclusive creative force behind an artwork. Chin has received numerous awards and grants from organizations such as the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council for the Arts; Art Matters; Creative Capital; and the Penny McCall, Pollock/Krasner, Joan Mitchell, Rockefeller and Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundations, among others.

Laura Raicovich is president and executive director of the Queens Museum, where she directs all aspects of the Museum's activities and is charged with envisioning its future. She is a champion of socially engaged art practices that address the most pressing issues of our times, and has defined her career with artist-driven projects and programs. Prior to QM, Raicovich launched Creative Time's Global Initiatives, expanding the institution's international reach. Previously, she was deputy director at Dia Art Foundation for over a decade, and has also worked at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Public Art Fund.

Hitomi Iwasaki, director of exhibitions, has been a member of the QM curatorial staff for the last 12 years. She has organized a number of group exhibitions of emerging artists, including two Queens International Biennial exhibitions, and project exhibitions with artists including Patty Chang, Silvia Grunner, Luca Buvoli, and Christian Marclay, among many others. Iwasaki also initiated Launch Pad, QM's first artist-in-residence program. Hitomi holds a BA in visual communication theory and art history from Kyoto Seika University, and MA’s in museum studies and art history from New York University and the City College of the City University of New York, respectively.

Prerana Reddy joined QM in 2005. As director of public programs, she organizes public programming developed in collaboration with diverse local community organizations and cultural producers. She oversees the Museum's community engagement initiatives, which combine arts and culture with social development goals in nearby neighborhoods predominantly comprised of new immigrants. She was one of four inaugural Douglas Redd Fellows for emerging leaders in the Arts and Community Development field awarded by the Ford Foundation. Prior to working at QM, she was a curator and program administrator for the African Film Festival. Reddy holds an MA in cinema studies and a certificate in c culture and media from New York University.

Manon Slome is the chief curator of No Longer Empty. Previously, she was the chief curator of the Chelsea Art Museum in New York. During that time, she curated and oversaw a program of some forty exhibitions, symposia, and museum publications as well as monographs and scholarly essays. Prior to the CAM, Slome worked as a curator at the Guggenheim Museum for seven years and was a Helena Rubinstein Curatorial Fellow at the Whitney Independent Study Program. She has written widely on contemporary art and has recently completed The Aesthetics of Terror, published by Charta Press.

Carol Stakenas is the executive director of NLE. She has over 20 years of experience dedicated to art and curatorial practices in the public sphere, which includes serving as the executive director of Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions and deputy director/curator of Creative Time in New York. Most recently, she was curator of exhibitions and public programs and was a faculty member in the graduate program at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Founded in 1972, Queens Museum is dedicated to presenting the highest quality visual arts and educational programming for people in the New York metropolitan area, and particularly for the residents of Queens—a uniquely diverse, ethnic, cultural, and international community. We fulfill this mission by designing and providing art exhibitions, public programs, and educational experiences that promote the appreciation and enjoyment of art, support the creative efforts of artists, and enhance quality of life through interpreting, collecting, and exhibiting art, architecture, and design. The artistic and educational programs and exhibitions we provide directly relate to the contemporary urban life of local communities, while maintaining the highest standards of professional, intellectual, and ethical responsibility.