West Palm Beach, Florida
Red Grooms: Moby Dick Meets the New York Public Library
November 14, 1998 - January 3, 1999
Study for Moby Dick Meets the NY Public Library, 1993, mixed media, 20 x 35.25 x 10.25 inches, collection of Marlborough Gallery, Inc.
Red Grooms is one of the leading living American artists; his graphic, quirky, almost cartoon-like style, reflects his own personal blend of Pop Art and Expressionism. This monumental installation work, executed in Grooms's trademark style, features an enormous (and liberally interpreted) reproduction of the New York Public Library, into which visitors enter. At the bottom of the steps, they pass two enormous white whales. Inside the library, they are confronted with various scenes, including Herman Melville writing "Moby Dick," (the historical fact that Melville had worked on his masterpiece at the New York Public Library was the inspiration for this piece) and Queequeg drinking beer.
The entire "piece" is approximately 180 X 300 X 540". This piece was first exhibited at the exhibition "Red Grooms at Grand Central", in New York City, in 1992. Due to its size, this will be only its second exhibition.
This eye-popping, cartoon-like piece will join other works relating to sea-tales by this contemporary American artist.
Left: Camus, 1984, color monoprint with embossment, 64 5/8 x 48 1/8, collection of Lysiane and Red Grooms
Red Grooms multi-media constructions and environments are known for their commentary on modern life and loving portrayals of urban culture, particularly of New York. His installations sometimes capture streetscapes and are often characterized by fantasy and kindly satire. Born in 1937 in Nashville, Tennessee, Grooms studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Hans Hoffman School of Fine Arts in Provincetown, Massachusetts and currently resides in New York City's Soho district.
Right: Captain Ahab, 1993, acrylic on paper, 74 x 68 inches, collection of Lysiane and Red Grooms
The exhibition is organized by the Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, Florida.
Original article of 8/25/98 updated 10/17/98.
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