1. Pinaree Sanpitak: Temporary Insanity – Austin Museum of Art
WHAT: Exhibition of Southeast Asian artist, Pinaree Sanpitak, who combines organic symbols and brightly colored sculptural installations to reflect on themes of spirituality, femininity, and equality in the region.
WHEN: April 20-June 30, 2013
What to look out for: One hundred amorphous, squeezable sculptures that you can play with.
2. The Artist and the Poet – Art Institute of Chicago
WHAT: Planned to coincide with the institute’s “Picasso and Chicago” exhibition, the array of prints and drawings reveal the collaborative relationship between artists like Pablo Picasso, Robert Motherwell and David Hockney and poets such as Max Jacob, Rafael Alberti and Wallace Steves, respectively.
WHEN: February 1st – June 2nd, 2013
WHERE: The Art Institute Chicago
What to look out for: ”Skin with O’Hara Poem” (1963–65), a print by Jasper Johns that was inspired by the poet Frank O’Hara.
3. Shinique Smith: Firsthand – LACMA
WHAT: A exhibition of Shinique Smith’s work that reflects on the artist’s Baltimore upbringing and early desire to work with fashion and design.
WHEN: February 8th, 2013 – ongoing
WHERE: Los Angeles Museum of Art
What to look out for: A combination of costumery and textiles tangled into sculptural installations like “Swaying Beauty.”
4. Gravity and Grace: Monumental Works by El Anatsui – Brooklyn Museum
WHAT: The first solo exhibition in a New York museum by the Ghana-born artist El Anatsui.
WHEN: February 8th – August 4th, 2013
WHERE: Brooklyn Museum
What to look out for: Twelve giant wall and floor sculptures made from metal, wood and appropriated objects.
5. Eye Level in Iraq: Photographs by Kael Alford and Thorne Anderson – de Young, San Francisco
WHAT: The photographs of Kael Alford and Thorne Anderson, two American-trained photo journalists who documented the aftermath of the US-led allied invasion of Iraq in 2003.
WHEN: February 9th – June 16th, 2013
WHERE: de Young
What to look out for: Images taken outside the confines of the U.S. military’s embedded journalist program.
6. Kehinde Wiley: The Memling Series – Phoenix Art Museum
WHAT: A new series of paintings by the New York artist Kehinde Wiley, who is known for his knack for re-envisioning classical styles of portraiture.
WHEN: February 20th – June 23rd, 2013
WHERE: Phoenix Art Museum
What to look out for: Eight paintings based on the work of Hans Memling, the Flemish master painter of the Northern Renaissance.
7. James Turrell: A Retrospective – Museum of Fine Arts Houston
WHAT: A collection of the many light installations of American artist James Turrell, concurrently presented by the MFAH, LACMA and the Guggenheim
WHEN: June 9th – September 22nd, 2013 at MFAH (May 26th, 2012-April 6th, 2014 at LACMA and June 21st-September 25th, 2013 at Guggenheim)
WHERE: Museum of Fine Arts Houston
What to look out for: ”Vertical Vintage”, a grouping of a dozen interactive, light-based installations.
8. Claes Oldenburg: The Street and the Store – MoMA
WHAT: A retrospective of Claes Oldenburg, an artist who once rented a storefront in New York City and filled it with handmade, painted sculptures that mimicked the everyday commercial products sold in stores throughout the neighborhood.
WHEN: April 14th – August 5th, 2013
WHERE: Museum of Modern Art
What to look out for: A selection of Oldenburg’s past “Store” performances, seen through films projected throughout the exhibition’s halls.