Death Is Irrelevant: Selections from the Marc and Livia Straus Collection
Until 2 August 2019
Hudson Valley MOCA
Through a selection of figurative sculptures curated from the Marc and Livia Straus Collection, Death Is Irrelevant looks at how artists consider their existence and how they express their present socio-political and personal situation. The exhibition questions if making art is a method of self-preservation, a road to immortality. Like Prometheus, who shaped man out of mud, and Athena who breathed life into his clay figure, does the act of creation suggest a material obduracy to exist? Whether figurative sculpture is a form of self-reflection or outward projection of ideas of the surrounding world, the featured artworks in Death Is Irrelevant open the dialogue to acknowledge one’s fragility and mortality as revealed in the works by artists from 17 countries.
Like Prometheus, who shaped men out of mud, and Athena, who breathed life into these figures, do sculptures created in our image suggest a will to exist? Are they a form of self-preservation, a reflection of their creator’s environment, or a grasp at immortality? Death Is Irrelevant examines these questions through the presentation of figurative sculpture from the Marc and Livia Straus Collection. Featuring works created over a forty-year period (1975–2018) from seventeen different countries, it is a contemporary examination of our timeless inclination to recreate ourselves, explore fragility and mortality, and consider what it means to be alive.
Death Is Irrelevant: Selections from the Marc and Livia Straus Collection, 1968–2018 is co-curated by Ken Tan, Tim Hawkinson, MARC STRAUS Gallery, in collaboration with the Marc and Livia Straus Family.
Pawel Althamer (Poland), Huma Bhabha (Pakistan), Berlinde DeBruyckere (Belgium), Folkert de Jong (Netherlands), Keith Edmier (USA), Nicole Eisenman (USA), Red Grooms (USA), Damien Hirst (UK), Sam Jinks (Australia), Matt Johnson (USA), Chris Jones (UK), Mark Manders (Netherlands), Tony Matelli (USA), Maria Nepomuceno (Brazil), Evan Penny (Canada), Patricia Piccinini (Australia), Rona Pondick (USA), Adrián Villar Rojas (Argentina), Italo Scanga (Italy), Claudette Schreuders (South Africa), Abdi Setiawan (Indonesia), Kiki Smith, (USA), Rebecca Warren (UK), Paloma Varga Weisz (Germany), Olav Westphalen (Germany), and Entang Wiharso (Indonesia).