Press:Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (May 1, 2008)
Author Name:Michael Taylor
At first glance, The Puppet Show seems a flip title.
Organized by Philadelphia ICA Senior Curator Ingrid Schaffner and Carin Kuoni, this exhibition catalogue focuses--with both humor and gravity--on the surprisingly prodigious amount of puppet imagery in contemporary art.
It takes as its historic point of departure one of the first episodes of avant-garde art history: Alfred Jarry's 1896 puppet play Ubu Roi, which the South African artist William Kentridge, in collaboration with the Handspring Puppet Company, has adapted into an allegory of apartheid.
Other puppets are featured in works from more than 30 well-established, international artists, including Anne Chu, Terence Gower, Pierre Huyghe, Christian Jankowski, Laurie Simmons, Kiki Smith and Kara Walker.
This volume also looks at puppets in Modern art and popular culture--from Sophie Tauber Arp’s Dada marionettes to the Internet phenomenon of the “sockpuppet”--a well-known person’s fake online persona, created in order to boost public opinion.
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