In his video, Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all (2014), Mexican artist Alejandro Almanza Pereda creates a surreal scene: a still life—that traditional artist’s subject of objects on a surface—becomes animated. Playing cards, fruit, and vases move with unexpected buoyancy. Suddenly one sees these objects not as games, food, or containers, but as living things with distinct personalities and individual agency.
In the companion exhibition, Almanza Pereda’s video serves as the catalyst for an installation of artworks from the Weatherspoon’s collection. Each selection features common things—a cup, a shirt, a box. Like the objects in the video, these ordinary items take on poetic meaning when featured as artistic subjects. Collectively, the video, paintings, drawings, prints, and sculptures provide an opportunity to pause and reconsider the role of things in our lives. How do we use them? Which do we treasure and which do we discard? What do things mean to us?
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website