Judith Bernstein 2017 by M. Parsekian
New York — Judith Bernstein presents a new body of work, specifically commissioned by The Drawing Center, for her exhibition Cabinet of Horrors in the Main Gallery. Focusing on work made since Donald J. Trump was elected president in November 2016, the exhibition includes approximately eighteen new drawings, four large-scale paper panel murals, a series of drawn ‘‘dollar bills’’, vintage piggy banks in a vitrine, and a free political campaign pin designed by Bernstein. As well, the exhibition features one of Bernstein’s earliest political drawings from 1969 and a selection of five ‘‘Word Drawings’’ from 1995, including: Liberty, Justice, Equality, Evil, and Fear.
Bernstein began engaging with social issues in her work during the 1960s, creating anti-Vietnam drawings, monumental phalluses, and pieces consisting entirely of her own signature. The present series of drawings use Trump’s own insult-driven, childlike syntax and language to distill Bernstein’s anger, disgust, and disapproval of the current administration and its policies. Through her new series of drawings, Bernstein transforms her critique into powerful graphic and text-based works. The exhibition is organized by Brett Littman, Executive Director.