Untitled - Doris Salcedo, 2012.
The somber work hails from an important series representing the Columbian artist’s interest in memorializing her home country’s strife, which was cresting as the work was made. The neat pile of crisp white shirts is meant to evoke men in a funeral procession; the rebar lances that penetrate them are an obvious but potent signifier of violence.
Currently on view at Art Basel - Alexander and Bonin.
Grey Area (Brown Version) - Fred Wilson, 1993.
Fred Wilson often appropriates art objects to explore issues of race, gender, class, politics, and aesthetics. Made up of five portrait heads of the Egyptian queen Nefertiti, Grey Area (Brown Version) refers to one of the most copied works of ancient civilization. The otherwise identical plaster effigies, which he purchased and painted, illustrate a value scale ranging in color from oatmeal to dark chocolate. Thus, Wilson raises, but does not answer, controversial questions about the racial identity of ancient Egyptians.
Contemporary Art - Paint, plaster and wood, 20 x 84 inches (total).
Permanent Collection of the Brooklyn Museum, New York City.
(Experienced this in person, October 2012)