The iconography of war and disaster have shaped the first years of the twenty-first century, both in the United States and throughout the world. On the Margins brings together a culturally diverse group of international artists whose work engages the platitudes associated with troubling themes, while addressing contemporary social and political conditions through a wide spectrum of styles and media.
The exhibition aims in part at underscoring the contrast between the realities of disaster and how they are presented—what we see and what we don't see—through the lens of today's media. Created in the past seven years, all of the works included in On the Margins consider the ways in which war and conflict around the world affect—or fail to affect—our everyday life. The roster of contributing artists is diverse and talented: Adel Abidin, Laylah Ali, Paolo Canevari, Enrique Chagoya, Willie Cole, Luis Cruz Azaceta, Willie Doherty, Jane Hammond, Martha Rosler, and Do-Ho Suh. The exhibition was curated by Carmon Colangelo, and the catalog features essays by Eleanor Heartney and Paul Krainak addressing the themes and artworks in the exhibition, as well as an illustrated checklist and full artist biographies.