Cooper Union at the Whitney Biennial

February 29, 2012

Cooper Union Stock Photo Nick Mauss, 'Concern, Crush, Desire', 2011, installation view Oscar Tuazon (A'99), 'For Hire', 2012, installation view

Congratulations to alumni Oscar Tuazon and Nick Mauss for their participation in the 2012 Whitney Biennial.

For the exhibition, Mauss—a 2003 School of Art alumnus—is exhibiting an installation titled Concern, Crush, Desire. The piece recreates in part a 1940s sketch by French designer Christian Bérard. Inside the installation, Mauss has displayed works from the Whitney and Smithsonian’s permanent collection by the likes of Marsden Hartley, Ellsworth Kelly and others.

Oscar Tuazon, a 1999 School of Art graduate, is exhibiting For Hire, an open architectural structure in the museum’s lobby floor which will be used as a site for performances by other artists during the length of the exhibition. An interview with Mr. Tuazon will be published on Cooper Union’s website in the days to come.

Former Cooper Union visiting artists Jutta Koether and Lucy Raven, and former guest artist Moyra Davey also have work in the show.

The Whitney Biennial is a major exhibition of contemporary art, typically featuring the work of prominent emerging and mid-career artists. On view from March 1 through March 27, the show occupies a special place in the New York art world, firmly established as one of the city's more prestigious exhibition venues for young artists. This year the Biennial is curated by Jay Sanders and Elisabeth Sussman.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.