Friday, January 13, 2012

to those that were lost.

Another highlight for me at the MOMA was the works of Doris Salcedo on view. I have known about her work for a long time now but had never had the opportunity to see her work in person. The museum had one of her cement filled furniture works and her shoes.

Her works are often almost like memorials- delving in to the issues of the violence in her native columbia and makeing works that honor and recognie the vitims of this violence.

The Moma says this about these works:

Salcedo spent weeks with the families and loved ones of the deceased, infusing herself with the details of their lives. Based on these experiences, she created sculptures from domestic furniture and clothing once touched by the warmth of daily use. Complete with legs, backs, feet, and handles, the dresser and chairs in this untitled work may be seen as stand-ins for the missing body of a victim and the fractured lives of his or her family.

The soft, warm grain of the wooden furniture contrasts with the gray mass of cold, hard concrete and rebar that fills the interior spaces and violates the structure of these objects. The furniture, bulky and mute, has been rendered useless by the sheer weight and volume of its concrete interment. The objects now mark time and space, bearing witness to an act of violence and functioning as memento mori. They are public reckonings of private loss and personal grief within a desperate, charged political environment. "My work deals with the fact that the beloved—the object of violence—always leaves his or her trace imprinted on us," Salcedo has said.

From her series of working with clothing of these victims on view are some of the shoes. The shoes are in the wall, viewable from both sides, hidden behind a layer of stretch animal skin sewn to the wall. The works are powerful homages to the lost.

Salcedo's work is work worth knowing about and understanding and was lovely to see in person. See her work here.


carole said...

Joetta - I LOVE reading your blog - it is so inspirational and right on the money in so many ways. The thing about Doris Salcedo's work - I have always loved it - but I saw it in person at the Institute for Contemporary Art and it is so much more powerful in person than I thought it would be. It makes me love her work even more! I click on your blog at least once a day (sometimes more) - I am an over whelmed mama, artist and teacher and I love getting an 'umph of inspiration from you!

random.proxy said...

I just saw some of these shoes earlier this week, at the Detroit Institute of Art. (The exhibit resembles the image second from the bottom of this post.)

It's a piece that really deserves to be seen in person - the translucent animal skin, sewn with rough black stitches into the drywall, is really jarring when you turn the corner from the rest of the polished and labeled works of art in the DIA.

It's a deeply unsettling piece. Thanks for giving it some deserved attention.

Joetta M. said...

Carole- thank you so much for your super sweet words.

And indeed you are both right in seeing the work in person its power is seen. The first time I saw of the shoes I thought of the "shoe"room in the holocaust museum in DC and thought abut how much a banal object in collection has so much power.

Thanks for sharing your experiences.