Monday, September 14, 2009

Yinka Shonibare, Brooklyn Museum, Through September 20th

The Guillotine. The Grand Tour. Tableaux Vivant. The Masked Ball. The 1880s. Colonialism. The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters. Oscar Wilde. Revisionist History. Spectacle on a Grand Scale.

If you have a chance to see the seriously epic and thought provoking Yinka Shonibare exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art before it comes down next Sunday, I simply cannot recommend it more highly.

From the website:
June 26–September 20, 2009
Morris A. and Meyer Schapiro Wing, 4th Floor
Period Rooms, 4th Floor
Robert E. Blum Gallery, 1st Floor

This exhibition is a major midcareer survey of work by the UK-based Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare MBE. Shonibare’s artwork explores contemporary African identity and its relationship to European colonialism through painting, sculpture, installation, and moving image. Shonibare is best known for his work with visual symbols, especially the richly patterned Dutch wax fabric produced in Europe for a West African market that he uses in a wide range of applications. His tableaux of headless mannequins costumed in this fabric evoke themes of history and its legacy for future generations. Through these works he explores the complex web of interactions, both economic and racial, that reveal inequalities between the dominant and colonized cultures of Europe, Asia, and Africa. A site-specific installation created for this presentation titled Mother and Father Worked Hard So I Can Play will be on view in several of the Museum’s period rooms.

Another site-specific installation, Party Time—Re-Imagine America: A Centennial Commission by Yinka Shonibare MBE, will be on view at the Newark Museum in Newark, New Jersey, from July 1, 2009, to January 3, 2010, in the dining room of the museum’s 1885 Ballantine House.
For more exhibitions, events, and spectacles of interest around the world, visit the still-under-development Morbid Anatomy Events Calendar, by clicking here. To find out more about the exhibition, click here. Click here to view and/or purchase exhibition catalog from the new Morbid Anatomy Bookstore (all proceeds go to new Morbid Anatomy Library acquisitions).

Image, From Brooklyn Museum of Art Website: Yinka Shonibare MBE (b. United Kingdom, 1962). How to Blow Up Two Heads at Once (Ladies), 2006. Two life-size fiberglass mannequins, two guns, Dutch wax printed cotton, shoes, leather riding boots, plinth 63 x 96 1/2 x 48 in.; each figure 63 x 61 x 48 in. Davis Museum and Cultural Center, Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, Museum purchase, WellesleyCollege Friends of Art. Image courtesy of the artist, Stephen Friedman Gallery, London, and James Cohan Gallery, New York. © the artist. Photo: Stephen White

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