The Church: ‘Are You Joking? Women & Humor’ w/ 45 Artists / Opening Reception June 22nd / thru September 1st

Are You Joking? Women & Humor

Katherine Bernhardt, Shark Attack, 2022.
Acrylic and spray paint on canvas. 96 x 120 in.
Courtesy of the artist and Canada, New York. Photo by Joe DeNardo.



The exhibition will run from June 23 – September 1, 2024

Feel like a laugh? The Church’s summer 2024 exhibition considers humor and contemporary art, focusing solely on the work of female-identifying artists. Conceived and organized by Chief Curator Sara Cochran, it features the work of 40 artists across all media installed across The Church’s Main Floor and the Mezzanine.  

The goals are two-fold. The first is to counter the tired stereotypes and clichés about women not being funny or able to take a joke. The second is to illustrate the different forms and topics of humor in contemporary art from artistic jokes, political outrages, bodily functions and appearances, cultural stereotypes, and sex and death, to the absurd and surreal, puns and slapstick as well as poking fun at sacred cows of art and its institutions.

For example, Katherine Bernhardt’s colorful and playful 2022 canvas Shark Attack takes on the traditions of paintings. Ignoring illusion, perspective, or scale, her paintings flatten any sense of hierarchy or relationship between its elements. A smattering of absurdly raucous images emerge: sharks, half-smoked cigarettes, donuts, a lost Croc, and a sad face juxtaposed with a reclining Pink Panther.

This exhibition gathers works that are satirical, serious, sweet, self-deprecating, ironic, mocking, strange, surreal, angry, subversive, and even gross. It takes art off its pedestal and puts the viewer in a position to laugh or shake their head. 


Cochran remarked: “Humor is deeply personal, and viewers will respond in individual ways to each of the works. It is exciting to hear all of these female voices in the exhibition. Humor is one of the best ways to speak truth to power and foster shared experiences” 


Come and laugh along with us at the Church this summer.  It will be a riot.  


Artists in the exhibition include Artists in the exhibition include Nina Chanel Abney, Eleanor Antin, Monica Banks, Lynda Benglis, Katherine Bernhardt, Deborah Buck, Patty Chang, Sonya Clark, Renee Cox, Pipi Deer, Abigail DeVille, Madeline Donahue, Rosalyn Drexler, Martha Edelheit, Nicole Eisenman, Saskia Friedrich, Pippa Garner, Shadi Ghadirian, Carly Haffner, K8 Hardy, Judith Hudson, Nina Katchadourian, Caitlin Keogh, Louise Lawler, Judith Linhares, Olivia Locher, Sarah Lucas, Tala Madani, Gladys Nilsson, Joyce Pensato, Wendy Red Star, Pipilotti Rist, Cara Romero, Bastienne Schmidt, Dana Schutz, Cindy Sherman, Heji Shin, Denise Silva-Dennis, Laurie Simmons, Alexis Smith, Tammi Smith, Mickalene Thomas, Claire Watson, Lisa Yuskavage, and Almond Zigmund. 


The Church was established in 2019 by artists Eric Fischl and April Gornik. Housed in a deconsecrated 19th-century church, its doors were opened in April 2021. Our mission is to foster creativity and to honor the living history of Sag Harbor as a maker village. The East End represents an exceptional artistic legacy, spanning the practices of indigenous art of several centuries ago, Abstract Expressionists of the mid-20th Century, and the many celebrated writers, makers, musicians, and visual artists of the recent past and current moment. Core programming includes visual art exhibitions, concerts and events, educational programming, workshops, lectures, and an artist’s residency. 


The Church

48 Madison Street

Sag Harbor, NY 11963



AAQ / Resource: Araiys Design Landscape Architects 


AAQ / Resource: Ben Krupinski Builder


By |2024-06-15T14:21:37+00:00June 15th, 2024|Bulletins, Courses, East End, East End Gallery Exhibitions, Exhibits|Comments Off on The Church: ‘Are You Joking? Women & Humor’ w/ 45 Artists / Opening Reception June 22nd / thru September 1st