Mar 3–July 3, 2023

Drawn from the Whitney’s collection and including video, animation, sculpture, and augmented reality, the works in Refigured reflect on interactions between digital and physical materiality. Sculptures are simultaneously physical and virtual, while video and animation extend beyond screens and into the gallery. The exhibition brings together a group of artists—Morehshin Allahyari, American Artist, Zach Blas and Jemima Wyman, Auriea Harvey, and Rachel Rossin—who engage with the concept of “refiguring,” appropriating material forms and bodies to re-create and reinvent them. Refiguring becomes a process of imagining alternative worlds as a means for constructing identity.

The five installations on view in this exhibition respond to the various forces that form identity, such as new modes of self-representation (via avatars) and even structures of oppression, from technological systems to colonialism. Some works explore how identity is embedded in the development of computer interfaces and artificial intelligence. Others address the refiguring of identity in both online environments and ancient cultural myths. Together, the works highlight the porous boundaries between today’s material and virtual realms, and the ways in which their interplay shapes our idea of selfhood.

This exhibition is organized by Christiane Paul, Curator of Digital Art at the Whitney Museum of American Art. 

Generous support for Refigured is provided by the John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation.

En Español

Con obras tomadas de la colección del Whitney Museum of American Art que incluyen video, animación, escultura y realidad aumentada, Refigurado reflexiona sobre la interacción entre las materialidades digital y física. Las esculturas son a la vez físicas y virtuales, mientras que el video y la animación se extienden más allá de la pantalla en la galería. La exhibición reúne a un grupo de artistas como: Morehshin Allahyari, American Artist, Zach Blas y Jemima Wyman, Auriea Harvey y Rachel Rossin, que abordan el concepto de la “refiguración”, apropiándose de formas y cuerpos materiales para recrear y reinventarlos. La refiguración evoluciona hacia un proceso de imaginar mundos alternativos como una manera de construir una identidad.

Las cinco instalaciones expuestas responden a las diversas fuerzas que forman la identidad, tales como los nuevos modos de autorrepresentación (por medio de avatares) e incluso estructuras de opresión, desde sistemas tecnológicos hasta el colonialismo. Algunas obras exploran cómo la identidad está presente en el desarrollo de interfaces de computadora e inteligencia artificial. Otras abordan la refiguración de la identidad tanto en ambientes en línea como en mitos culturales antiguos. Juntas, las obras resaltan las porosas fronteras entre los ámbitos material y virtual, y el modo en que su interacción configura nuestra idea de personalidad.


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Audio guides

Hear directly from artists and curators on selected works from the exhibition.

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Virtual Programming

In June 2023 artists Morehshin Allahyari, American Artist, Zach Blas, Auriea Harvey, and Rachel Rossin convened in our virtual space to discuss their contributions to Refigured. The Whitney's virtual space is hosted by Mozilla Hubs and is always accessible. The space is activated periodically for events and programming.

Enter the Virtual Space About the virtual space

Explore works from this exhibition
in the Whitney's collection

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In the News

“The depth and complexity of each work…makes it a show in which one can linger, each of these five works proving absorbing and thought-provoking in its own way.” —The Guardian 

“…plunges viewers into the digital now.” —The Wall Street Journal 

“Sometimes refiguring means working anew with histories recent and long past; other times it means giving physical form to the digital.” —Artnet

“…probe into new modes of self-representation, while examining a number of structures that shape them…” —Hypebeast

artport: Internet art at the Whitney

artport is the Whitney Museum's portal to Internet art and an online gallery space for commissions of net art and new media art. Originally launched in 2001, artport provides access to original artworks commissioned specifically for artport by the Whitney. Many of the artworks in Refigured are artport commissions.

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