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Site-Specific, International Contemporary Art Exhibition Desert X Returns To California Desert

Posted Friday, February 1, 2019 – 4:06 pm

By Laura Coleman

The inspiring contemporary site-specific art exhibition known as Desert X, returns to the California desert for its second edition on Feb. 9. Free and open to the public through April 21, the recurring international contemporary art exhibition is once again being curated by Artistic Director Neville Wakefield, this time together with co-curators Amanda Hunt and Matthew Schum.

“It’s been an honor to be a part of the continued expansion of Desert X, adding co-curators Amanda Hunt and Matthew Schum to the team, reaching south to the Salton Sea and beyond into Mexico and embracing a range of ecological, environmental and social issues that have been driving conversations about our role in the anthropocene,” Wakefield said.

The inaugural Desert X in 2017 attracted an audience of more than 200,000 diverse and multi-generational, local and international visitors over nine weeks and engaged millions across social and digital media channels.

The upcoming Desert X exhibition, the full details of which will be revealed just hours before the public opening, will activate the desert landscape through 19 site-specific installations and performances.

Personally selected by Wakefield’s team, artists’ works explore ideas of site-specificity, the frame of post-institutional art and the interactive possibilities that attend it. Participating international contemporary artists include: Iván Argote, Steve Badgett & Chris Taylor, Nancy Baker Cahill, Cecilia Bengolea, Pia Camil, John Gerrard, Julian Hoeber, Jenny Holzer, Iman Issa, Mary Kelly, Armando Lerma, Eric N. Mack, Cinthia Marcelle, Postcommodity, Cara Romero, Sterling Ruby, Kathleen Ryan, Gary Simmons and Superflex.

Diversifying the range of media presented in 2017, Desert X 2019 adds film projects and evolving, process-driven works to its presentation, which will span 50 miles across the Coachella Valley, expanding to the south to explore the ecological bellwether of the Salton Sea, and further across the border into Mexico.

In tandem with the exhibition, there will be a three-day symposium, “Desert, Why?” Set to take place at the Annenberg Theater at Palm Springs Art Museum and at Desert X artists’ sites, the three-day celebration of art and the environment includes a series of performances, panels, tours and reception. There will also be a panel at the Salton Sea on the impending cli- mate crisis.

Descriptions of the 2019 artists’ projects, a site map, details of exhibition-related programming and parallel programs will be posted on on Feb. 9.

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