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Meet the Artist: Isaac Julien in Conversation with John G. Hanhardt

Groundbreaking media artist Isaac Julien and MAG’s Senior Consulting Curator of Media Arts John G. Hanhardtdiscuss Julien’s new MAG commission, Lessons of the Hour—Frederick Douglassa multi-screen film and video installation inspired by the life of Frederick Douglass. Included in museum admission. 

Isaac Julien CBE RA (U.K., b. 1960; lives and works in London) is a global artist whose command of the moving image has not only transformed installation art, but also how we can relate to history and the need to rearticulate it. He is acclaimed for his subtle and compelling films as well as for his vibrant and inventive media art installations. During the past two decades he has made work largely, though not exclusively, for galleries and museums, using multi-screen installations to explore narrative and the representation of memory, desire, and cultural displacement.

John G. Hanhardt is MAG’s consulting senior curator of media arts. Hanhardt began his career in the Department of Film at MoMA in New York City, and from there went to the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis to establish its film program and film study collection. From 1974 to 1996, he was curator and head of the film and video department at the Whitney Museum of American Art. He was senior curator of film and media arts at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum from 1996 to 2006, and consulting senior curator of film and media at the Smithsonian American Art Museum from 2006 until 2016. Hanhardt is recognized for, among other distinctions, being a leading scholar of Nam June Paik, Bill Viola, and Andy Warhol.