Monday, March 19, 2012

Cindy Sherman & MoMA

I went to MoMA to see the Cindy Sherman retrospective but there were many other pleasant surprises along the way.

Cindy Sherman's sign through Sanja Ivekovic's installation.

Work from the Contemporary Galleries:

Always a fan of Robert Gober's Cat Litter

Ashley Bickerton's Tormented Self-Portrait (Susie at Arles), 1987-88. I learned once that this was important in contemporary art history and I never forgot that fact. It was far larger and more unwieldy in person that I expected. Still interesting though incredibly dated.

Doris Salcedo, Atrabiliarios (Atrabilious), 1992-93
[Wall installation with plywood, shoes, animal fiber, thread, & sheepskin] Even though it was animal skin, Salcedo's artwork hidden behind six niches won first prize in my book for unusual installation.

Dieter Roth's Solo Scenes, 1997-98 documenting the last two years of his life (working in his studio, sleeping, eating alone, etc.). This was only 1/3 of the installation which was emotionally moving. All the people that were posing for their portraits in front of it due to the sheer mass of televisions might not have read the wall text to know they were standing in front of one man's eventual demise.

A bag from the Design exhibition... here's where I wonder how often one would be asked to have it rescanned at the airport.

Eugene Atget's Documents pour artists (Above: Coin, Boulevard de la Chapelle et Rue Fleury 76, 18E, June 1921. So many Atget's to view at once...

Cindy Sherman's installation just like the Venice Biennale but even larger than life.

I've read several reviews of the retrospective this month. This was the most interesting. Overall, it was a well-thought out exhibition. The best moments include:

1) seeing all of the Untitled Film Stills together and realizing how much like student work some of them really were. There are many repeats that one doesn't see with the same characters with different expressions which was something I never noticed when seeing them individually.

2) Her giant wallpaper pieces are made from the same material that I planned on using for the cat scans! Yay! Happy that this will work after all.

3) I loved the History portrait room and the new work of rich women which is nearly as large as the wall paper pieces.

4) One of the funniest instances was watching a mother cover her ten year old daughter's eyes and herd her out of the room upon encountering Untitled 263 as represented here. There weren't enough of the grotesque photographs to round out Sherman's work but they are not necessarily the crowd pleasers that everyone wants to see either.

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