This monumental piece is "1.8 (Renwick)" by Janet Echelman. It counts as textile (netting), with computer directed lighting. It was inspired by the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in 2011.
The lighting changes slowly over time. There were enough people lying on the floor, watching, that I was sure it must be changing, but the changes were slow enough that I didn't perceive them while I watched. (I was also very excited by all I was seeing, and was disinclined to spend a lot of time with any one piece. If I lived in Washington, I would go right back to the Renwick and do a slower traversal!)
A lightened-up view of the floor.
Zoomed-in look at what you see in the lower left corner of the above. So many layers.... I read that there are 51 miles of twine making up this piece. That's a lot of knotting/winding/twisting......
Moving on into the next part of what is currently on display. More textiles! Models of common pigeons, wearing the finery of their extinct relatives. I am very surprised that they don't list the technique with the identifying info. I believe it is crochet. "Biodiversity Reclamation Suits" by Laurel Roth Hope.
I am still not in favor of politics in art. I'm not against it, exactly, but it doesn't float my boat. If it works, and convinces people to change their minds/habits/attitudes, well, maybe I'm in favor, and maybe not, depending.
But mostly, I don't go to art museums to be politicized. I don't watch politics on tv, and I don't want to see it/them in museums, either.
In the Renwick, I was so thrilled to find textiles, and so thrilled to find art by women, that I paid more attention to some very political work than I might have otherwise.
And you'll note that I'm still not showing you anything that I thought was hideous. (Not that there were very many things in the Renwick that I didn't think were visually appealing -- at least from a distance....)
This is "Edson's Flag" by Marie Watt. There has to be a story here -- the flag is a military funeral flag. But I don't find a story online about this piece.
I'm wondering if I think it is not political because I don't know the story. I'm thinking I *do* think it is political, because it includes a national flag.... But less so, maybe?, than if the story that has to exist were published with the work.
The rest of the fabric in this work is wool blankets, and the sort of satin binding you'd find on an old wool blanket, if you bought one in a thrift shop.
I love the texture of the blankets, and the contrast with the shine and ruffle of the binding.
This is ceramic. "Apocalypse 1942" Made in 1942 by Viktor Schreckengost, who says "I've always felt that you can say more with one vivid cartoon than you can with a lot of heavy words."
Viktor's probably right, and heavy words aren't worth much, but they're all I've got at the moment.
I would just like to say that appeals to a fake history and a fictional set of traditions, in favor of anyone's wish to be "over all" others, has been tried, people. And it was ugly, and it was atrocious, and a huge amount of harm was done by people who thought the rights and wishes of others were meaningless. And it was eventually put down by the whole freaking rest of the world, at great cost to everyone.
However enticing it may be to run roughshod over other people, it just doesn't pay in the long run. History has demonstrated the cost of this sort of misbehavior over and over and over and over and over, and continues to do so.
Giving up a traditional supremacy over other people is not fun. I get that. Not being "über alle" any more, when you were, can be very difficult to accept.
But for anyone who can raise their eyes from their own immediate loss to take in the long-term gain for their descendants if they quit the whole "I'm better than you because of some random characteristic I was born with" supremacy thing and get out of the way of a more inclusive way of running things has to be convinced it's the right thing to do.
Anyone who can look up from a very narrow selfish "What's best for ME, RIGHT NOW?!" point of view must conclude that justice for all is a better plan for the long run. !!!
And now for another sadly political piece. I totally L O V E the background of this piece. The fact that this amazing,and amazingly rendered, gorgeous landscape is in the bomb sights of an unseen airborne vehicle goes a long way toward spoiling the piece for me. I'm showing it to you because it is gorgeous. Despite the fact that it is political.
(Adolf was one too many political pieces for me, and I only included him because another guy, with another bad haircut [who really wishes to follow in Adolf's footsteps and be the boss of everything] is far too much in the news these days.)
This piece is by Therese Agnew, and was made around 2000, of cottons, denim, and bridal tulle. And a million miles of thread.
Love the shapes, love the colors............
I didn't look at it, up close and personal, when I was there, but from here, it looks like the entire surface of this piece is thread. I wonder if that is true. And I wish that I paid more attention to the trees, which are clearly raised........... Stuffed with that "bridal tulle," I wonder?
And now for something that I do not think is political. (Hooray!)
This is an amazing work. It is cut from paper, which happens to be a McDonald's bag. We are looking down at the front of an opened up paper bag. We can see that the surface of the front of the bag has been cut.
Now we are looking into the bag, at the tree that was cut from the paper that used to be the front of the bag! Isn't this amazing? And look how the hole through the bag allows light through in a way that complements the tree. I love this.............. "Notice -- Forest (Autumn)" made in 2002 by Yuken Teruya.
So many beautiful things, pretty much everywhere we look. Love these three pieces together.
The basket (look at the way the lid was woven, starting with that plus which grows into a half sphere!) is "Quatrefoil Lidded Shaker Cat Head Basket with Handle," made of black ash and white oak in 1992 by John E. McGuire.
The wooden piece is "Hackberry Spheroid," made in 1995 by Edward Moulthrop.
Of all the work I saw in the Renwick, I only recognized a very few artists' names. I thought I recognized Janet Echelman's work, but did not remember her name.
This nice bowl was made by Gertrude and Otto Natzler. I knew their names from my ceramics days. It's called "Oval Bowl" and was made in 1942.