Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools

FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition at Transformer Station, on view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022.

FRONT 2018: An American CityFRONT International

Launched in 2018, FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art is a free, public, contemporary art exhibition comprising artist commissions, performances, films, and public programs.

In October 2021, FRONT International opened a preview exhibition, Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools, at Transformer Station Museum in Cleveland that introduced processes, themes, and artists from its second edition, opening in the Summer of 2022.

Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022.FRONT International

You may carve a dream With a humble tool.

—Langston Hughes, “Ballad of Booker T.”

This preview exhibition, whose title takes inspiration from Langston Hughes, pointed both to the boldness required to envision change and to the everyday tools that might help to enact it.

Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022.FRONT International

How can the everyday processes of art-making be transformative for artists and their communities? How can art catalyze healing?

To explore these questions, the first exhibition of FRONT 2022, Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools, embraced a uniquely transparent and iterative curatorial approach: existing artworks will be exhibited alongside projects still in development for FRONT's summer 2022 exhibition, Oh, Gods of Dust and Rainbows.

Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022., From the collection of: FRONT International
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Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022., From the collection of: FRONT International
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By previewing specific projects and the curatorial methods of the show in this way, Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools pulled back the curtain on the triennial-making process and invited participation and feedback directly from Cleveland-area communities.

Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022.FRONT International

Visitors will be asked to engage in activities related to each project, and the open-ended installation—which will extend across both galleries of Transformer Station.

Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools included a range of films, works on paper, furniture, textiles, sculptures, performances, and more—and served as a site for diverse public programs including artist talks, screenings, and workshops.

Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022., From the collection of: FRONT International
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Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022., From the collection of: FRONT International
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Since its announcement in January 2020, the second edition of FRONT International—entitled Oh, Gods of Dust and Rainbows, after a couplet by Langston Hughes—has explored art’s role as an agent of healing, a theme that has become ever more urgent in the subsequent phases of the Covid pandemic and ongoing social and environmental crises.

Installation View, FRONT 2022 Preview Exhibition, "Grand Prototypes, Humble Tools". On view October 8, 2021–January 2, 2022.FRONT International

Mark your calendar for FRONT 2022: July 16–October 2, 2022

Your visit to FRONT will begin at the FRONT PNC Exhibition Hub at Transformer Station!

Please visit www.frontart.org/go to plan your visit this summer!

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The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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