Sunday, July 24, 2016

The Keeper

The New Museum's current exhibition, The Keeper, is well worth a visit, offering a fascinating look at the obsessive borders of creating & collecting. Some, but not all, of the work on view falls into that category termed "outsider art."

"The Keeper is an exhibition dedicated to the act of preserving objects, artworks, and images, and to the passions that inspire this undertaking. A reflection on the impulse to save both the most precious and the apparently valueless, it brings together a variety of imaginary museums, personal collections, and unusual assemblages, revealing the devotion with which artists, collectors, scholars, and hoarders have created sanctuaries for endangered images and artifacts."

The Keeper reminded me of the kinds of exhibitions I've enjoyed so much at London's Wellcome Collection, a museum devoted to the interconnection of art & medicine.

Here are a few pictures from the show.

Arthur Bispo do Rosário (1910 - 1989) - Shelves of Cars

"During five decades of internment in a psychiatric hospital in Rio de Janeiro, Arthur Bispo do Rosário produced over eight-hundred tapestries, sculptures and lavish ceremonial garments in preparation for Judgement Day."

Ydessa Hendeles (born 1948)

Partners (The Teddy Bear Project), (2002)

A letter in the installation, dated 1986, bearing a Blackheath address, and written to a "Dear GrateAunt," includes the following lines:

I must apologize for writing this note myself.  Teddy was very eager to write, but I had to discourage him - the fact is, although he is very bright and intelligent, he is, sadly, almost illiterate, and I feel that a letter written by himself would be almost incomprehensible.

Images of Whitman in a mammoth project by Henrik Oleson (born 1967): Some Gay-Lesbian Artists and/or Artists relevant to Homo-Social Culture Born between c. 1300 - 1870 (2007).

'The Keeper' Reveals the Passion for Collecting (NY Times)

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