1. Last chance! Blues for Smoke closes this Sunday. Turning to the blues not simply as a musical category but as a field of artistic sensibilities and cultural idioms, the exhibition features works by over forty artists from the 1950s to the present, as well as materials culled from music and popular entertainment. 
Rachel Harrison (b. 1966), Untitled, 2012. Colored pencil on paper, 19 x 24 in. (48.26 x 60.96 cm). Courtesy the artist and Greene Naftali, New York

    Last chance! Blues for Smoke closes this Sunday. Turning to the blues not simply as a musical category but as a field of artistic sensibilities and cultural idioms, the exhibition features works by over forty artists from the 1950s to the present, as well as materials culled from music and popular entertainment. 

    Rachel Harrison (b. 1966), Untitled, 2012. Colored pencil on paper, 19 x 24 in. (48.26 x 60.96 cm). Courtesy the artist and Greene Naftali, New York

  2. "The blues doesn’t have to be played or sang." Chuck D reflects on the meaning of the blues on the occasion of Blues for Smoke, on view through April 28.

  3. With Calder's The Cock’s Comb (1960) looking on, KOOL A.D., Amaze 88, and Loren Hell took the stage in the Museum’s lower gallery last night. The music continues through the weekend, as young artists present their contemporary spin on the blues tradition.

    With Calder's The Cock’s Comb (1960) looking on, KOOL A.D., Amaze 88, and Loren Hell took the stage in the Museum’s lower gallery last night. The music continues through the weekend, as young artists present their contemporary spin on the blues tradition.

  4. Catch Mykki Blanco, KOOL A.D., Amaze 88, and Loren Hell this Friday night as we kick off our weekend-long smokeforblues festival!

    Catch Mykki Blanco, KOOL A.D., Amaze 88, and Loren Hell this Friday night as we kick off our weekend-long smokeforblues festival!

  5. In conjunction with Blues For Smoke, join us this Friday for Speaking the Blues, an evening of spoken word, readings, and performance inspired by the blues aesthetic. Admission is free during pay-what-you-wish!
Installation view of Blues for Smoke (Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, February 7–April 28, 2013). Photograph by Sheldan C. Collins

    In conjunction with Blues For Smoke, join us this Friday for Speaking the Blues, an evening of spoken word, readings, and performance inspired by the blues aesthetic. Admission is free during pay-what-you-wish!

    Installation view of Blues for Smoke (Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, February 7–April 28, 2013). Photograph by Sheldan C. Collins

  6. Join us this Friday evening as we mark the start of the Blues for Smoke performance series with a riveting show by Lonnie Holley and Cooper-Moore!

    Join us this Friday evening as we mark the start of the Blues for Smoke performance series with a riveting show by Lonnie Holley and Cooper-Moore!

  7. We invite you to view these installation shots from Blues for Smoke. Now at the Whitney Museum of American Art through April 28.

    Installation views of Blues for Smoke (Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, February 7–April 28, 2013). Photograph by Sheldan C. Collins

  8. Join us this Thursday evening for Greil Marcus: Jay DeFeo and All that Jazz, as the author and critic discusses Jay DeFeo’s stylistic inventions, physical processes, and improvisational approach to materials. As Marcus argues, “in the deepest, fiercest, and most playful moments of her work, Jay DeFeo’s work was jazz,” too. Get your tickets now.
Jay DeFeo (1929–1989), Dove One, 1989. Oil on linen, 16 x 20 in. (40.6 x 50.8). Collection of Dan and Claire Carlevaro. © 2013 The Jay DeFeo Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photograph by Ben Blackwell



 

    Join us this Thursday evening for Greil Marcus: Jay DeFeo and All that Jazz, as the author and critic discusses Jay DeFeo’s stylistic inventions, physical processes, and improvisational approach to materials. As Marcus argues, “in the deepest, fiercest, and most playful moments of her work, Jay DeFeo’s work was jazz,” too. Get your tickets now.

    Jay DeFeo (1929–1989), Dove One, 1989. Oil on linen, 16 x 20 in. (40.6 x 50.8). Collection of Dan and Claire Carlevaro. © 2013 The Jay DeFeo Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photograph by Ben Blackwell

     

  9. This Wednesday, Blues for Smoke curator Bennett Simpson discusses the vitality and innovation at the core of the blues tradition as a major catalyst for experimentation within modern and contemporary art. Get your tickets now.
Jack Whitten (b. 1939), Black Table Setting (Homage to Duke Ellington), 1974. Acrylic on canvas, 72 × 60 inches. Collection of the Art Fund, Inc. at the Birmingham Museum of Art; Purchase with funds provided by Jack Drake and Joel and Karen Piassick

    This Wednesday, Blues for Smoke curator Bennett Simpson discusses the vitality and innovation at the core of the blues tradition as a major catalyst for experimentation within modern and contemporary art. Get your tickets now.

    Jack Whitten (b. 1939), Black Table Setting (Homage to Duke Ellington), 1974. Acrylic on canvas, 72 × 60 inches. Collection of the Art Fund, Inc. at the Birmingham Museum of Art; Purchase with funds provided by Jack Drake and Joel and Karen Piassick

  10. American guitarist Gary Clark Jr. discusses what the blues means to him as a young contemporary artist who possesses a radiating blues sensibility. Blues for Smoke is on view at the Whitney Museum through April 28.

  11. Catch our ad the next time you’re waiting to catch your train! Blues for Smoke is on view through April 28.

    Catch our ad the next time you’re waiting to catch your train! Blues for Smoke is on view through April 28.

  12. The blues is heartbeat music, it is human music.

    — Henry Rollins discusses the blues on the occasion of Blues for Smoke, on view at the Whitney through April 28.

  13. I wouldn’t say blues is about triumph—blues is about resistance.

    — Dr. Cornel West discusses the blues. Blues for Smoke is on view at the Whitney through April 28.

  14. In 1972, Alma Thomas became the first African-American woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney. Her Late Night Reflections is on view now in Blues for Smoke.
Alma Thomas (1891–1978), Late Night Reflections, 1972. Acrylic on canvas, 28 ¾ x 44 inches. Collection of the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, USA. Purchase, Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University Fund for Acquisitions and bequest of Marjorie Pfeffer by exchange. Photograph by Peter Paul Geoffrion

    In 1972, Alma Thomas became the first African-American woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney. Her Late Night Reflections is on view now in Blues for Smoke.

    Alma Thomas (1891–1978), Late Night Reflections, 1972. Acrylic on canvas, 28 ¾ x 44 inches. Collection of the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, USA. Purchase, Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University Fund for Acquisitions and bequest of Marjorie Pfeffer by exchange. Photograph by Peter Paul Geoffrion

  15. ‪Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson‬ of The Roots responds to the question, “What is the blues?” Blues for Smoke is on view at the Whitney through April 28.