SWOON’S “SUBMERGED MOTHERLANDS” AT THE BROOKLYN MUSEUM
Brooklyn-based street artist and modern day Tom Sawyer, Swoon, aka: Caldonia Curry, is a force of nature who leads a small army of DIY, dumpster-diving, anti-establishment “Freegans” who work tirelessly to support her bohemian vision. It was with this crew of compatriots that she created the flotilla upon which she crashed the Venice Biennale six years ago, and with whom she’s crated her latest installation—based loosely on that experience—titled Submerged Motherlands at the Brooklyn Museum.
Inside the institution’s hallowed halls (where Ai Weiwei’s mid-career retrospective is also currently on display), the artist and her materials-scavenging associates have constructed the museum’s tallest-ever installation highlighted by a 60+ foot tree that is flanked at its base by her Biennale “garbage boats” (she calls them “sculptural rafts”) made entirely of found materials and populated by her trademark woodblock print stencil portraits, including several of her own mother, who died recently.
Discussing her inspiration for the exhibition, Swoon explained, “I’ve been thinking a lot about ‘home’ and this installation is about home and the loss of home in a lot of ways. When I decided on ‘Submerged Motherlands’ I was thinking about climate change and thinking about ‘Sandy.’ Also my own mother passed away while I was in the ideation stage for the installation so I was thinking about the loss of my own mother and that relationship and it all just kind of merged together.”
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