Disclaimer: Okay, I already posted about this exhibit over on the Fred Flare blog (which you should definitely start reading if you want to hear my opinions about the MTV movie awards) a few days ago, but then I realized it was silly that I hadn't also posted about it own my own blog, considering this one is you know, actually exclusively about art. Therefore, I decided it was alright to double-post as long as I added more interesting stuff too. So, here you go, folks, please ignore my Jonah Lehrer-like self-plagiarism...
GUYS I went to the coolest exhibit at the New Museum down on Bowery this Sunday. The exhibit, titled “Parade,” is by Swedish artist Nathalie Djurberg and features a whole menagerie of hand-made technicolor birds, ranging from tiny little finches to huge pelican and ostrich-like creatures.
The birds are made from a variety of materials, though most obviously, they use canvas that has been cut, roughly painted, and layered atop exposed wire - which is then often covered in plastic-like goop. There is a severe contradiction created between the overt artificiality of the individual birds and the uncannily real appearance of the birds when placed all together. They are terrifying and enticing, challenging you to look closer, while all the while looming over you.
The exhibit also includes several claymation videos made by Nathalie (a medium which is her specialty), and a wonderful ambient soundtrack from Nathalie’s partner, Hans Berg. While the videos are perhaps the most haunting part of the exhibit - they show women in various deadly scenarios, being slowly attacked by bird-men or snakes, with phrases like "it won't hurt a bit" hovering above them - the eerie electronic music is what really ties the whole exhibit, and its ideas of the absurd, the unnatural, and the beautiful, together.
TLDR - If you’re in NYC, you should definitely stop by before the show closes on August 26, and while you’re there, be sure to check out the top floor of the New Museum (the “Sky Room”) as well to get a lovely view of downtown Soho. In the meantime, check out the video at the way bottom to get a taste of the experience. DO IT GUYS I really mean it this time.
P.S. Do I make a good bird?