In October of this year, artist Jared Madere unveiled his first-ever solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. The New York-based artist took over the John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation Gallery on the first floor—a space open to the public free of charge—and set up a massive, animated mixed media work that’s as odd as it is endearing. Last night, at the museum’s annual Whitney Art Party charity event, Madere presented something equally peculiar. The artist parked his RV—in essence a mobile space for his artist-run gallery known as “Bed-Stuy Love Affair“—on the street in front of the museum.
The RV and surrounding space feature four solo exhibitions by artists Madere has selected: Jake Cruzen, Joseph Geagan, Valerie Keane and Viet Laurent Kurtz. “Bed-Stuy Love Affair” focuses on emerging artists, and this latest crop delivers something strange and even a little frightening, especially when viewed at night. Nightmare-like figures hang in cages in an intentionally unclean interior living space. But for all that is surreal, there’s something human and relatable—it is an actual living space, after all. When the RV isn’t in use as an installation space, Madere resides inside—and sleeps on the bed that’s visible when viewers enter the exhibition.
The ’78 RV itself was painted over with engaging visuals. Altogether, it’s a rogue DIY-infused art experience and a worthy curiosity for the Whitney to embrace. And although it will leave shortly, Madere’s untitled sculpture in the museum will stay up until January 2016.
“Bed-Stuy Love Affair” mobile gallery will be on view for two more days (during museum hours) and is open to the public and parked directly in front of the Whitney on Gansevoort St.
Lead image courtesy of BFA, other images by David Graver