Let My People Show!
Two galleries, 87 Jewish artists, one exhibition:
Lots of familiar names pop up in “Jew York,” the exuberant summer group show that opened at Zach Feuer and Untitled galleries in June. Alex Katz, Eva Hesse, Sol LeWitt, Deborah Kass, Orly Genger, Jennifer Rubell, Diane Arbus, and Dan Colen are just some of the 87 Members of the Tribe whose work appears in the two gallery spaces.
But there’s one that even “Jewish geography” experts won’t know:
The checklist says he’s dead, but the real fake Juston Guston is very much alive.
The new Guston stole his name from one Jewish master, the base for his mixed-media work from another. His contribution to the show, The Disquieting Duck, is a reproduction of The Birthday, a 1915 Chagall in MoMA’s collection that’s one of the romantic touchstones of early modernism.
The floating, kissing lovers are still here, but they’re overpainted with a large cartoonish yellow duck.
Why a duck?
The title, the method, and the duck were taken from a series that Danish artist Asger Jorn made with thrift-store paintings in the ‘60s, Juston Guston explained in an email.
There’s no Groucho in “Jew York,” but his famous comment about not wanting to join a club that would have people like him as a member comes to mind, because five or so artists, according to Feuer, declined to be in the show. Read more