Today is the opening of the first ever large-scale museum show in the US show by British artist Chris Ofili. The last time his work was shown in New York was in 1999 at the Brooklyn Museum. His piece, the Holy Virgin Mary (below bottom right) caused quite a stir, with former Mayor Giuliani trying to have the work banned. Now that piece and many more are on show at The New Museum, in what can only be described as one of the most refreshing museum shows so far this season.
Covering three entire floors of the museum, each gallery space is devoted to one period and style of the artist’s career. An entire wall covered with incredible small water colors, done between 1995 and 2005, depicting men and women in splendid matching African robes is spellbinding. From the canvases using the artist’s now infamous elephant dung material, to his most recent and vibrant work set against purple gallery walls, this museum show is an absolute must see.Chris Ofili. Night and Day. The New Museum. 235 Bowery. NY. NY. 10002. Tel: 212 219 1222