5 Things to Know about Third Space

/ Collections - Exhibitions


Soundsuit by Nick Cave
Soundsuit, 2009 Nick Cave (American, born 1959), fabric, with appliquéd crochet and buttons, knitted yarn, metal armature, mannequin, Collection of the Birmingham Museum of Art; Museum purchase with funds provided by the Collectors Circle for Contemporary Art 2010.80
© Nick Cave. Photo by James Prinz Photography. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

The BMA’s latest exhibition, Third Space /shifting conversations about contemporary art, opens tomorrow. While this is an exhibition you truly must see for yourself, here are five things to know about Third Space before you do.

  1. This FREE exhibition features over 100 works of art from the Museum’s permanent collection. The BMA’s collection includes more than 26,000 works of art dating from ancient to modern times. These works can’t all be on display at the same time due to space restrictions and conservation requirements. Many of the pieces you will see in Third Space have either never been on view or haven’t been for many years!
  2. This exhibition represents the works of over 90 international artists. Third Space features artists such as Kerry James Marshall, Ebony G. Patterson, Mark Bradford, José Bedia, Thornton Dial, and William Christenberry. With its underlying theme of making connections between the American South and the Global South, it was important to include works by artists from around the world and right here in Alabama.
  3. This exhibition was curated by BMA Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art Wassan Al-Khudhairi. When she joined the staff in 2014, Wassan set her sights on presenting the Museum’s collection in new ways and using it to start conversations about the world we live in. Third Space, her first major exhibition, does just that. The title of the exhibition refers to the idea of a shared alternative space that brings together a combination of cultures and ideas.
  4. Auburn University’s Rural Studio created a work for Third Space. Rural Studio produced a work of art that serves as a gathering space for reflection and contemplation within the gallery. Founded and headquartered in nearby Hale County, Alabama, Rural Studio is an off-campus, design-build program of the university that provides affordable building solutions to underserved populations across the country. Once the exhibition closes, the sculpture will be repurposed for the construction of a house for the 20K Home project.
  5.  Over the course of this two-year exhibition, the Museum will host Chapters, a program series created to encourage ongoing discussion. Chapters will invite artists from around the country to Birmingham to discuss their respective practices and ideas surrounding the exhibition. Six Chapters will take place during the exhibition and will include artists working in a range of disciplines with varying backgrounds, from the academically trained to the self-taught. Join us on April 18 for Chapter 01 to hear artist Glenn Kaino and olympic gold medalist Tommie Smith discuss their collaboration on Bridge, which is part of the exhibition.
AFI.6.2016_01_p_w 2013.3_01_0_Galembo Ghana_w AFI.462.2012_01_p01_w-1 2002.138_01_p01_w (1) AFI.497.2012a-b_01a_p01_w AFI.152.2014_01_p_w
Bridge, 2014, Glenn Kaino (American, born 1972), Fiberglass, steel wire, and gold paint, installed dimensions variable, Section 1 of 6, Collection of the Art Fund, Inc. at the Birmingham Museum of Art; Purchase with funds provided by members and friends of the Collectors Circle AFI.6.2016 © Glenn Kaino. Courtesy Honor Fraser Gallery


Third Space is presented by



Additional support provided by the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts, City of Birmingham, Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham, Protective Life Foundation, Vulcan Materials Company Foundation, Robert R. Meyer Foundation, Susan Mott Webb Charitable Trust, The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Alabama Tourism Department, Alabama Humanities Foundation, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, The Lydia Eustis Rogers Fund, and Friends of Third Space.