Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art
North Adams, MA
MASS MoCA curator Denise Markonish remarks, “a true state of wonder agitates, mesmerizes, and is almost forcible and shocking. It is a sudden intake of breath, a gaping mouth, a relinquishing of understanding.” As commonly used, “wonder” is sometimes mistaken for curiosity, which centers on the practice of fact-finding and explanation. In Explode Every Day: An Inquiry into the Phenomena of Wonder, viewers experience a purer state of wonder, a state of being poised between knowing and not knowing, and defined by an experience of something truly new.
Harnessing the idea of wonder as a thematic metaphor, the exhibition features both existing and new works by twenty-three international artists, each touching on certain facets of wonder, including: the perceptual/ visionary, the technological/scientific, the philosophical/meditative, time/cosmos, and illusion/fear.
Co-organized by Markonish and Columbus, Ohio-based artist Sean Foley, Explode Every Day was inspired by a course that Foley taught at Ohio State University and a long-running conversation between the co-curators. The title for the exhibition was inspired by the writer Ray Bradbury, who often spoke of the need to retain a sense of wonder: You remain invested in your inner child by exploding every day. You don’t worry about the future, you don’t worry about the past—you just explode.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website
See the museum website for a complete list of artists and their bios.