In 1995, the Los Angeles-based artist Mike Kelley, who passed away last year, created Educational Complex, a piece that reconstructs, in architect’s foam board, a model of all the schools he attended, combining them to form one giant, city-size imaginary facility. He hated school, so it is fitting that his posthumous retrospective should be a subversion of all 40,000 square feet of exhibition space at PS1 Contemporary Art Center, a former public school in Queens. The vast show, curated by the Stedelijk Museum’s Ann Goldstein, consists of some 270 howling, scatological, and often poignant and powerful works.
The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit has received a $150,000 grant from the Rauschenberg Foundation to support the programming of Mike Kelley’s Mobile Homestead installation at the museum.
The Watermill Center’s “Mike Kelley: 1954–2012” exhibition is set to close in about three weeks, and the institution is offering extended hours to entice people to make the trek to the Hamptons to see it before it’s gone.
Through the end of its run, on Sept. 16, the show will be open Tuesday through Friday, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Those Tuesday and Wednesday hours are new.
Last fall, a few months before he killed himself at the age of 57, the Los Angeles-based artist Mike Kelley signed off on the final plans for a project called Mobile Homestead, a full-size replica of his childhood home in the Westland area of metro Detroit. He intended to place the replica in downtown Detroit, where it would be used as a community center, providing services ranging from haircuts to block parties. The house would have a two-level basement, closed to the public, conceived as an underground studio where he would make his art—a secret lair and such a natural extension of his overall artistic project that it seems like some kind of joke (it is tempting to think of it as a real-life “Fortress of Solitude,” Superman’s hideout, which Kelley constructed in three-dimensional form and used as the central image in his final solo exhibition last September at the Gagosian Gallery in London).
“I tell you how much money to spend, and you spend it,” said Sara Friedlander standing on a podium in a gold-sequin skirt and a jean shirt tied at her waist. “It’s like I tell my husband.” Ms. Friedlander, a post-war and contemporary art specialist at Christie’s, was moonlighting last night as an auctioneer at Performa’s first benefit auction.
The benefit for Performa, which organizes a performance art biennial in New York, was held at the Flag Art Foundation’s Chelsea gallery, which was filled with sun for almost the entire evening as guests sampled porcini mushroom pastry puffs and endive spears filled with crab salad while surveying the works at auction by artists like Mike Kelley, Laurie Simmons, Christian Marclay and Shirin Neshat, among many others. A black crown fashioned from black leather and rhinestone studded stars, by Rashaad Newsome, sparkled in the sunlight streaming in from the balcony. A dancer with the Trisha Brown Company said he had bid on the Marclay piece, a torn corner of a page from a comic book.
Week in Pictures
This week, Gallerist traveled far and wide around the boroughs, from Bushwick at the Bogart Salon where Francis Greenburger and Ann Fensterstock were among the panelists convened to discuss “Capital and Its Discontents,” over to the Hole on the Bowery for a phallic reading with champagne and cupcakes, up to Chelsea where we stopped in for the Read More
While the Stedelijk’s traveling Mike Kelley retrospective will likely not arrive at MoMA PS1 for at least a year (the date is still unconfirmed), New Yorkers will be able to take in a good portion of the iconic artist’s video work on Saturday, April 14, in a 12-hour video screening organized by Electronic Arts Intermix and the Dia Art Foundation in coordination with the Mike Kelley Foundation. Kelley died in January at the age of 57.
The screening, which will be the first public event to take place at 541 West 22nd, a former marble factory that Dia purchased last year, stretches almost the entire length of Kelley’s career. (The space may become the site of a new Dia:Chelsea space, but for now it is largely unaltered, complete with some kilns.)
Among the works to be shown are The Banana Man, from 1983, his seminal 1992 collaboration with Paul McCarthy, Heidi and A Voyage of Growth and Discovery, released in 2011 with artist Michael Smith.
The newly renovated Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam will present a retrospective of the artist Mike Kelley, who died Jan. 31 this year at the age of 57. The show, called “Mike Kelley: Themes and Variations from 35 Years,” opens Dec. 15, 2012, and will include work from the 1970s right up until his death. This is his first large-scale Kelley retrospective since the Whitney’s “Catholic Tastes” exhibition in 1993. The exhibition is being organized by Eva Meyer-Hermann.
In all the hubbub over Morley Safer’s segment on 60 Minutes in which he trashes the art world on a visit to Art Basel Miami Beach, a follow-up to his 1993 dig at the industry, one thing we haven’t heard much of, at least not from Mr. Safer, is the names of the artists he shows in his segment—like Ryan McGinley, who made the video of a scantily clad woman holding a make-shift blowtorch, or Mike Kelley, responsible for the installation of sewn stuffed animals and Jennifer Rubell, whose interactive life-size sculpture of Prince William makes an appearance. And while Mr. Safer presents these works as emblems of his confusion and dismay at what has become of the art world, we can’t help think what a thrill it is to see Paul McCarthy’s large pink sculpture of a libidinous dwarf, White Snow Dwarf (Bashful), on national broadcast television. Savoring the moment with a few more artists, here’s a breakdown of some more work we found in the segment, each one paired with one of Mr. Safer’s signature bon mots at the time of their appearance.
Whitney Biennial 2012
In this week’s New York magazine, Carl Swanson writes about Los Angeles artist Mike Kelley, who died on Jan. 31, at the age of 57, and reveals that the 2012 Whitney Biennial, which opens March 1 and includes Kelley’s work, has been dedicated to him.
Mr. Swanson reports that three videos produced by Kelley and the English public-art group Artangel will be on view in the exhibition. They document the travels of the artist’s Mobile Homestead, a replica of his childhood home, on the back of a flatbed truck through Detroit in 2010, a project realized with with the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD).