Peel back the layers, peer behind the curtain and peruse the collected ephemera that remains after an exhibition has been packed up and shipped out of the museum. Permanent Collection / Impermanent Museum explores the physical residue of the first seventeen years of SMoCA’s exhibition history.
Looking down, the footprints of past artworks remain visible on the gallery floor. From Jen Urso’s drawing series Ice Flow (commissioned for the exhibition Drawing Outside the Lines, summer 2007) to Chris Fraser’s recent Architecture + Art installation Atmosphere (Chris Fraser: Looking Back, autumn 2015) a variety of pieces have left their marks in a variety of ways. Looking up, artworks also leave hanging hardware in the gallery rafters. Janet Echelman’s 25-ft wide sculptural net The Expanding Club (Radical Lace and Subversive Knitting, autumn 2008) and the wooden supports for the 200-lb bronze bell in David Gurman’s Memorial for the New American Century (Covert Operations: Investigating the Known Unknowns, autumn 2014) are just two examples. Combined, the built sediment from past exhibitions provides an archaeological opportunity for viewers to rediscover and reconsider the Museum’s creative history. The marks left on the building by artworks that have traveled through its doors echo the impressions those same works have made on SMoCA’s visitors.
Permanent Collection / Impermanent Museum highlights the subtle places where a careful investigator can find small remembrances of the artworks and exhibitions installed, de-installed and re-installed within the museum’s walls and ruminate on the remnants of the exhibition process.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website