On October 26, 2017 approximately 20 UW-Whitewater art and design students traveled to Chicago to visit Nick Caves Studio to meet the artist and begin creating their exhibits for Cave's visit to campus on February 15, 2018.
The students were divided into groups and given an object by Nick Cave to instigate an art piece. Nick Cave's work often is fueled by an instigating object. It can take almost any form, but generally posses a certain undefinable energy in itself. In this project, "Object as Instigator," the students have been assigned a Cave-selected object, and work in collaborative teams to envision a work of the teams choice in any medium and/or media. The only stipulation is that the object be carefully examined, contemplated and understood as a group before ultimately being incorporated into the final execution. Each teams final work will be formally presented as well as accompanied by a project statement that describest the objects role in the final work.
Nick Cave is an artist, educator and foremost a messenger, working between the visual and performing arts through a wide range of mediums including sculpture, installation, video, sound and performance. He says of himself, "I have found my middle and now am working toward what I am leaving behind." Cave is well known for his Soundsuits, sculptural forms based on the scale of his body. Soundsuits camouflage the body, masking and creating a second skin that conceals race, gender, and class, forcing the viewer to look without judgment.
In a 2013 feature in Interview Magazine, Cave said of his project HEARD•NY, a large scale performance in Grand Central Terminal organized by Creative Time, "I was really thinking of getting us back to this dream state, this place where we imagine and think about now and how we exist and function in the world. With the state of affairs on the world, I think we tend not to take the time out to create that dream space in our heads." This is relevant to his practice as a whole.
Cave recently opened a massive immersive installation Until at MASS MoCA, October 15, 2016 - August 2017, and had a solo exhibition Here Hear on view at the Cranbrook Art Museum (2015). Other solo exhibitions include St. Louis Art Museum (2014-2015), the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston (2014) and the Denver Art Museum (2013).
Public collections include the Brooklyn Museum; Crystal Bridges; the Detroit Institute of Arts; the High Museum; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden; the Norton Museum of Art; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Birmingham Museum of Art; the De Young Museum; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Orlando Museum of Art; the Smithsonian Institution; and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, among others.
Cave has received several prestigious awards including: the Americans for the Arts 2014 Public Art Network Year in Review Award (2014) in recognition of his Grand Central Terminal performance Heard - NY, Joan Mitchell Foundation Award (2008), Artadia Award (2006), the Joyce Award (2006), Creative Capital Grants (2002, 2004 and 2005), and the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award (2001). Cave, who received his MFA at the Cranbrook Academy of Art, is Professor and Chairman of the Fashion Department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Nick Cave has been represented by Jack Shainman Gallery since 2006 when he had a show entitled Soundsuits. Other solo exhibitions at the gallery include Recent Soundsuits (2009), Ever-After (2011) and a two-part exhibition Made by Whites for Whites and Rescue (2014).
A $1 million gift from alumna Annette (Derge) Schuh '71 and her husband Dale supports an annual visit of a visual artist of a significant stature to campus.