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Nov112010

Younger Than Jesus

"Younger than Jesus" was an exhibit at the New Museum of the Bowery in New York City. That district itself has been resurrected (pun intended) from gritty to trendy.

This international collection of over 500 artists born after 1975 didn't really have a theme because the curators say there isn't one among what is called "Generation Y." The works were indeed eclectic, and they were either multimedia or explosions from the brain or palette. One person in his twenties said, "The stuff was pretty weird," and he wouldn't want it in his house.  Just what we used to hear about modern art. I don't know what Jesus would say, but I liked it. It's way out stuff, but fascinating. Made me want to write about it.

So, what's new?

One compelling display was a large white feather bed in the middle of the room with a live woman asleep in it. She was given a "sleep aid" so she would be in repose throughout the day. But, when I saw her she had awakened, and said she didn't mind people staring while she slept. Earn a buck for sleeping on the job. The artist had numerous explanations. I don't know if he'd like mine. I called it "Waiting for Prince Charming."

A Chinese entrant approached random people on the street and offered to buy every single thing on their person. He laid out each subject's belongings on white blocks—including their underwear, yuck!—in a rather poignant testimony to who we are and what defines us.

A Russian artist displayed a wall of pen and paper sketches her emotionally impaired grandmother had made. They depicted every piece of equipment Grandma ever sold in the Moscow tractor shop where she'd worked, an exquisite tribute to the complications of the mind.

One of the curators did a video of his children drinking cola and tying shoes. Cute kids. Boring art.

But artists are still exhibiting their nightmares...daydreams...riffs of social commentary...self indulgence (we all remember Andy Warhol...who's foundation, incidentally, helped fund this show). In this exhibition there was an intensity of purpose, even if we're not always sure what the purpose is. I enjoyed seeing what young people are up to and their methods of self-expression, but their subjects aren't much different than those of the last generation. What's new is the media, technology, and reflections on a rearranged world order, and of course, the artists.

 

 "The Generational: Younger than Jesus" was on exhibition from April to June of 2009. 

 

 

 

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Reader Comments (1)

Myra,

So glad to see you on the blogs! Love the unleashing. Stay untethered!

January 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca Suter

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