Carrie and I went to MoMA – New York City’s Museum of Modern Art – last week. In addition to artists whose work I already enjoy (Beckmann, Cornell, and many more), I was happy to encounter three pieces of sculpture by Doris Salcedo.
I don’t know too much about Doris Salcedo… so this blog entry is just a really quick basic introduction. Maybe I’ve seen her stuff before, but I don’t recall. She was born 1958, from Bogota, Colombia, according to her Wikipedia entry. She has three pieces up at MoMA right now, I think that they were just in the permanent collection galleries. I didn’t note the titles, sorry. They are really haunting… exploring with issues of absence, disappearance… relating to the disappeared in Colombia’s (and other Latin American countries) tragedies from death squads and dictatorships.
The piece at the top of this post is a sort of wall installation… very clever in its use of gallery space. There are holes in the gallery wall – about the size of shoeboxes. Inside the boxes are shoes, but they’re not easy to see. Covering the box is a sort of semi-transparent animal-skin (?) stitched into the wall. It begs the question of who’s shoes? What happened to their owners? What were their lives like.
Here’s a video of the artist speaking on her work:
Lastly, here’s a shot of Carrie and me in front of the third piece – constructed out of concrete and somewhat-ordinary-looking school furniture – chairs, cupboard – that’s been encased in concrete… a sort of hardening, deadening of ordinary things.
I will be on the lookout for more of her work.