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Yto Barrada:
Le Grand Soir

April 25, 2024—2026

MoMA PS1

Artist Yto Barrada (Moroccan-French, b. 1971) will transform the MoMA PS1 courtyard with a large-scale installation titled Le Grand Soir, a two-year commission that continues PS1’s history of inviting artists to respond to its unique campus. Opening April 25, Barrada’s first major outdoor work is composed of colorful concrete blocks stacked into pyramidal towers whose lower levels visitors can sit on and explore, providing an interactive experience in the courtyard and a setting for PS1’s signature summer music series Warm Up. The sculptures’ formations draw inspiration from multiple histories of surmounting barricades and retooling architectures: the construction of human pyramids in Morocco, Moroccan Brutalism, and Barrada’s family lore. As Barrada states, “I am thrilled to be presenting my first large-scale outdoor sculpture in the courtyard at MoMA PS1. We increasingly live in a world of walls, the ones built by the powerful to exclude or contain. As someone who has long researched strategies of resistance, I have centered this project on another form: the pyramid, which instead of walls offers steps, games, secrets, and possibilities. I wanted to combine the reliability of geometry with the precarity of body structures, celebrating forms of solidarity and escape.”

The exhibition is organized by Ruba Katrib, Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs, and Jody Graf, Assistant Curator, MoMA PS1.

Yto Barrada: Le Grand Soir is made possible by Allianz.

Generous support is provided by the Jacques & Natasha Gelman Foundation.

Learn more about the exhibition on our website.

Images

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Portrait of Yto Barrada. Photo: Marissa Alper

Yto Barrada. Palissade de Chantier (Building Site Wall), Ferry, Tangier, Fig. 3. 2009. Chromogenic print. 23 5/8 × 23 5/8″ (60 × 60 cm). Vital Projects Fund. Robert B. Menschel. Image courtesy Sfeir-Semler Gallery

Yto Barrada. Lyautey Unit Blocks (Play). 2010. Wood and paint. Image courtesy the artist and Sfeir-Semler Gallery. Photo: Alain Kantarjian



Yto Barrada. Tree Identification for Beginners. 2017. Digital video (color, sound), 36 min. Image courtesy the artist and Pace Gallery