“The Modern Window: Caroline Kent,” Museum of Modern Art, New York. October 29, 2022 – October 2023. Photo: Dan Bradica. Courtesy the artist and Casey Kaplan, New York

“Growing up I found myself often on the outside of language,” artist Caroline Kent has said. “Moving through the world, I found it was a barrier one had to surpass in order to connect. With abstract painting, everybody had the same starting point.” Intrigued by the utopian energies of avant-garde artists who developed modernist abstraction in the 20th century, Kent creates new forms of abstraction that respond to the ways we communicate in the present. She embraces the theater set–like structure of the Modern’s windowed exterior, staging a scene that is direct and graphically bold but that also evokes the building blocks of a cryptic visual language.

The two works on view are a kindred pair. They share materials of walnut and Belgian linen, rich colors, and irregular geometric shapes that circulate both in the center and on the outer edges. Resembling a call-and-response, Kent’s work invites viewers into a slowed-down, open-ended space of reflection.
The Modern Window is a series of site-specific installations by contemporary artists commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art and designed for the exterior window of The Modern restaurant on West 53rd Street.