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IMG_0381My wonderful niece Leslie came out to see us this week-end. She’s a Special Ed teacher, and mother of two. It’s her first vacation without the family. So I asked her – what do you want to do in New York? Go to MoMA! The Museum of Modern Art. 


According to their website –  MoMA is a place that fuels creativity, ignites minds, and provides inspiration. 


The admission is twenty bucks – times 3. I’ll admit it – I plunked down $60 and immediately thought of what ELSE I could do with that kind of money. But I love my niece, and this is where she wanted to go. 


The main room looked like someone was setting up for a garage sale. There was all this crap laying on laying on the floor- shoes, books, old appliances, cell phone chargers, empty pop bottles, towels, beat up games with pieces clearly missing. WTH? Mark and I looked at each other – thinking the same thing. Leslie was in the back of the room reading the story of the installation


Beijing-based artist Song Dong (b. 1966) explores notions of transience and impermanence with installations that combine aspects of performance, video, photography, and sculpture. Projects 90, his first solo U.S. museum show, presents his recent work Waste Not. A collaboration first conceived of with the artist’s mother, the installation consists of the complete contents of her home, amassed over fifty years during which the Chinese concept of wu jin qi yong, or “waste not,” was a prerequisite for survival. The assembled materials, ranging from pots and basins to blankets, oil flasks, and legless dolls, form a miniature cityscape that viewers can navigate around and through.


And so we did – with fresh perspective.  Instead of piles of junk, it began to look like a 3 dimensional quilt. Nothing material was ever tossed. Buttons, lids to jars, worn out shoes. They may have lost their original purpose, but in times of great need, what other benefits lie within their sole? 


In the spirit of bricolage – I challenge myself to find “other uses” for my garbage. 


Any ideas?

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July 2009