Mike Kelley at Gagosian Gallery


Last night Los Angeles-based artist Mike Kelley’s solo show “Kandor 10/Extracurricular Activity Projective Reconstruction #34, Kandor 12/Extracurricular Activity Projective Reconstruction #35” opened at the Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills. The exhibit features glass and mixed media models of Kandor, Superman’s city of birth on the distant (and fictional) planet of Krypton, as well as some interesting videos that deal with ritual and youth. The exhibit is full of large-scale illuminated glass sculptures, projected videos, dramatic lighting, and strange contraptions.

The exhibition’s curator had this to say:

“The Kandors, begun in 1999, are representations of Superman’s city of birth, the only remaining part of his home planet, Krypton. In the well-known comic books, Superman saved the miniaturized city in a bottle fed by a tank of atmosphere. Kandor’s depiction in these narratives is inconsistent and fragmentary, prompting Kelley to create multiple versions of it, cast in colorful resins and illuminated like reliquaries. Kandor 10, a yellow city housed in a hand-blown, pink glass bottle, is a grouping of tall skyscrapers situated within a full-scale rock grotto…

The EAPR video series – first shown as the exhibition “Day Is Done” at Gagosian, New York in 2006 – stems from photographs of what Kelley calls “folk performances”—common, often carnivalesque, activities documented in school yearbooks, local newspapers, or home snapshots…Kelley has described the EAPR videos as defensive shields against the gaps or “repressed trauma” in his Educational Complex (1995), a model of his childhood home and every school he ever attended, merged into one structure.”

The show runs until February 19th. Check out some photos from the opening below.

Daniel St. Germaine

Daniel St. Germaine

Daniel St. Germaine

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