Nick Cave: Meet Me at the Center of The Earth
The Norton Museum of Art is pleased to be the only venue in the Southeastern United States to present the nationally circulating, spectacular exhibition Nick Cave: Meet Me at the Center of The Earth, from October 9, 2010 through January 9, 2011. Featured in VOGUE Magazine’s famed September Fashion Issue, Nick Cave’s “Soundsuits” are fabricated from radically diverse, multi-layered, found materials. Over thirty examples of these mixed media sculptures comprise this exhibition along with videos and photographs of the sculptures in action.
Evocative of African, Caribbean and other ceremonial ensembles as well as extreme design found in high fashion, Cave’s work explores issues of identity and transformation through his intuitive layering of cultural references. Each visionary piece celebrates craftsmanship in its handmade construction from scavenged materials as varied as yarn, beads, buttons, sequins, bottle caps, vintage toys and human hair. Following in a long tradition of artists who use what is available and affordable, Nick Cave finds the ordinary and discarded materials from our surroundings and re-contextualizes them into extraordinary and meaningful works of art.
As Roberta Smith, critic for The New York Times, said in her 2006 review, “Whether Nick Cave’s efforts qualify as fashion, body art or sculpture…they fall squarely under the heading of Must Be Seen to Be Believed.”
“To me, everything outside of myself is community. I don’t see myself as an artist but as a humanitarian using art to create change. My hope is that these new Soundsuits will cause people to find ways to live with each other, extend our compassion to other communities, and take care of our natural resources. If I can create an opportunity to bring people of all creeds, identities, and interests together, then I am doing my work,” said Nick Cave.
A video montage of the suits being worn in performance will give viewers a sense of the cacophony of sounds and sensations that are integral to the work. In addition, Cave will collaborate with the Norton and a group of dance students from Palm Beach Atlantic University for two special performances on November 19 and 20, as well as several other exciting exhibition related programs.
Despite his significant accomplishments, Cave feels that his work is just beginning. His love for what he does and his desire to share it with others – especially children – is an expression of generosity and hope. Through the Soundsuits, he invites us to dance with him, to play with him and, most of all, to dream with him so that we may all feel the empowerment and magic of their imaginative transformation.
About Nick Cave
Cave received his BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1982 and MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1989. He studied fiber art, but is committed to a broad spectrum of interests and disciplines. Cave is an associate professor and chairman of the Fashion Department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where he teaches in the Fiber Arts Program. He has led workshops on topics such as Extending the Body: Experiments in Clothing and has designed, manufactured, and marketed his own line of men’s and women’s clothing. He has received numerous awards including the United States Artist Fellow Award (2006) and Joyce Award (2006), and his work has appeared in solo and group exhibitions across the United States and Europe. Nick Cave: Meet me at the Center of the Earth is accompanied by a stunning catalogue of the same name, published by Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco.
This exhibition was organized by Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco.
Local sponsorship of this exhibition is made possible in part through the generosity of The Milton and Sheila Fine Endowment for Contemporary Art, The Dr. Henry and Lois Foster Endowment for Contemporary Art and The Contemporary and Modern Art Council of the Norton Museum of Art.