It seems as though there has never been a better time to explore New York City’s most innovative contemporary arts museums. We recently discussed Chris Burden’s massive take-over of the New Museum, and now, MoMA PS1 welcomes a substantial exhibition that showcases the late artist, Mike Kelley.
“Mike Kelley” at MoMA PS1 is the largest exposition of the artist’s work to date, and the first comprehensive survey since 1993. Not only is it the largest exhibit dedicated to Kelley, but it also marks the vastest exhibition the museum has ever organized since “Rooms” marked MoMA PS1’s inception in 1976. It seems fitting then, that such a large and comprehensive survey should be centered around one of the most influential American artists of the past quarter century, whose work is recognizable around the world.
Mike Kelley emerged as an artist in the 1970s and throughout his 35-year career worked in every medium imaginable. He utilized found objects, drawings, large-scale assemblage and sculpture, collage, performance art, photography, painting, video, and even more. During his youth, the artist was involved in music that represented the rebellious attitude of the counter-culture at that time, something he has described as being his “entrance into the art world.”
MoMA PS1 says that during his life “Mike Kelley produced a body of deeply innovative work mining American popular culture and both modernist and alternative traditions – which he set in relation to relentless self and social examinations, both dark and delirious.” Kelley often used his deep explorations into various artistic disciplines to create commentary on subjects such as race, class, and youthful rebellion. One of his most iconic works involves a series of sculptural pieces that use colorful stuffed animals sewn together and suspended in air. You can find this and countless other works at MoMA PS1.
Mike Kelley, on view at MoMA PS1 from October 13th, 2013-February 2nd, 2014.