Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Artist of the Week: Jennifer Rubell

A felled apple tree for dessert. 

Jennifer Rubell creates smorgasbords in the name of art. For a Brooklyn Museum gala in 2010, Rubell presented a participatory exhibition called “Icons” where she laid out a pile of golden potato chips and unmarked paint tubes filled with various dips on two wooden pedestals. Nearby heat guns melted cheese heads that hung from the ceiling and dripped over stacks of crackers arranged on a platform below.

[First four photos by John Berens and Kevin Tachman from artist's website.]

For one of the annual breakfasts held at her parents’ home during Art Basel in Miami, she presented droves of hungry art-eaters with a perfect brunch trifecta: 2,000 hard-boiled eggs, pieces of bacon, and croissants. There was even a nearby table literally jam-packed with various jelly jars (ha!), each with a spoon inside, ready to spread ‘em.

One of the most sophisticated little ladies I’ve ever seen, croissant aloft, teaspoon poised.
[Photo from artist's website.]

A truly perfect food. Photo found on 

Her food installations are an inventive way of satisfying the most basic need of the masses on a grand scale. These banquets have a humor, and yet there’s also something very sensual about them. Having never attended one of her grand dinner parties myself, I can only imagine the sights, the smells, the taste. 

Jennifer is slated to participate in this year’s Performa 11, a biennial of performance art that will take place in New York this November. I’ve already marked my calendar, so hopefully
 I’ll get the chance to experience one of these feasts in the flesh. I love all-you-can-eat buffets.

- Cathleen 

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