A show so nice, I had to see it twice. Big too! And you know I like em big.
MoMA's immense survey of artist Mike Kelley's work spans all five floors of the former school house building of PS1 in Queens. Poignant and very often funny, Kelley's work firmly embraces a queer sensability. Born in Motor City (just like me!), Kelley worked for most of his life in Los Angeles until his tragic death last year. Most suspect suicide.
Kelley's work explores memory and trauma (and Marxism) with humor and kandor, often employing sexual imagery as a trigger-- right up my (back) alley.
In my favorite piece, "Day is Done", Kelley recreates narratives based on found photographs he collected from high school year books. Kelley re-stages each photo, re-invisiones the "lost content" and transforms bizarre, yet banal, instantiations of shared social memory into sites of creative play. There is even an extensive body of work about Superman for all you comic book geeks out there-- not to mention "Banana Man", rapist Japanese water spirits, and a host of sock puppet sculptures . . . enough I See Penis for a generation.
Follow the red ribbon. . .
. . . to the bowels of the museum, and break down the doors. . .