How contemporary art responds to politics
Movement is a term used in art history to classify various styles of art created by a group of artists during a particular period of time. Yet such classification suggests a lack of movement, as each artist is confined within the parameters of a certain style. Movement, however, shapes art and culture; it is a prerequisite of its development. Artists moving from one culture and geographical region to another continuously affect change in the art world.
But when physical movement is suppressed, as we see with the current “travel ban” in the United States, shared visual culture is stifled, as thousands of artists are confined within the brackets of categorization. In protest of the “travel ban,” several museums across the United States used modern art to respond by mounting exhibitions highlighting work by artists from the banned nations. This was to showcase the importance of cross-cultural understanding, and proclaim that we must see art as political and recognize the political stakes of art.
Marissa Vigneault was born and raised in the Northeast, not far from New York City, which allowed for ample exposure to art museums and galleries at an early age. After trying to be a painter, but never quite succeeding, she turned her attention to writing about art, at which she is way more adept. Marissa teaches classes in modern and contemporary art at Utah State University, where she works with the Honors’ Program, serves on the advisory board of the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, and loves to engage in a good studio critique with undergraduate and graduate students. She is secretly happy that her colleagues in Art + Design do not ask her to critique their work, as that could get messy. Marissa is the author of numerous articles and catalogue entries, and is currently working on a book about Hannah Wilke and Marcel Duchamp. She has presented her research on performance art and feminism at national and international conferences. Her favorite graduate school advisor always said, “What an art historian argues will tell you as much about their project as it does about the writer,” a statement with which she wholeheartedly agrees. Marissa lives in Logan with her multi-talented husband Bill (he is a painter) and their charmingly performative daughter Harper. They love skiing, hiking, and kayaking, but Marissa terribly misses high humidity and sea-level elevation.