Friday, October 9, 2009

Vortexhibition Polyphonica / Henry Art Gallery

Cherry Bomb Vortex (detail) by E.V. Day
image via Henry Art Gallery

Kudos to the Henry for pulling out over 100 objects/65+ artists from their permanent collection for their new exhibition, Vortexhibition Polyphonica. The show is divided into three main hubs organized around one central piece of art that represents one of the key words, Transform, Suspend and Mixing Messages. For example, in the first hub, Cherry Bomb Vortex by E.V. Day represents the idea of Transform.

From these three hubs, Associate Curator Sara Krajewski has created constellations of works that revolve (or echo or relate) around the central piece. Some choices are immediately obvious but others require a little thought to figure out their relationship.

Pontian by Jeffrey Simmons
image via Henry Art Gallery

True to its name (polyphonic = many voices), the exhibit will start out with Sarah’s selections and then in a few months, Chief Curator Elizabeth Brown will add, remove, or in some way alter the exhibit as part of the call and response process.

The exhibit is incredibly diverse and includes artists like Christian Dior, Gary Hill (that strobe light!), William Hogarth, Jenny Holzer, Marcel Dzama, Nan Goldin, Jeffrey Simmons and many more! It won't just be the curatorial staff doing the remixing either. They're planning on inserting the UW MFA show into the exhibit (VP will be up for over a year), various authors wrote the text pieces and there are stations where museum visitors can ask questions and post thoughts.

I really like this show - both as a way to dig into the permanent collection and as an interesting way to interact with art.

Save the date Friday, October 23 for the Henry's Fall Open House. Free for members ($10 for non-members) and includes beer, wine and cupcakes. Also, Skillet, Marination Mobile, and Hallava Falafel will be onsite offering food specials. New shows opening are Allan Sekula: Waiting for Tear Gas, Polaroids: Mapplethorpe, and Eirik Johnson: Sawdust Mountain.

1 comment:

Betsey said...

Thanks, Joey!! I'll keep you posted on remixes and changes in Vortexhibition Polyphonica, too.
Also - (I didn't know this last week at the preview but I do now) The Gift Shop ( will open an installation by Joe Park and Jenny Zwick the Open House on the 23rd.