BALTIMORE.- Chocolate, cheese, and fried dumplings arent what you would usually expect as the subjects for museum-worthy artworks, yet in its upcoming Front Room exhibition the BMA features two artists who manage to do just that. On view through January 4, 2009, the BMAs experimental project space pairs the work of Dieter Roth (German, 1930-1998) and Rachel Harrison (American, b.1966) to coincide with the opening of the exhibition Franz West, To Build a House You Start with the Roof. Separated by generations and continents, Roth and Harrison overlap both formally and conceptually in approximately 15 two- and three-dimensional artworks from the BMAs collection that expose their shared sensibilities.
Both Roth and Harrison use the stuff from everyday life, ranging from food items to daily cast-offs to bric-a-brac and magazine pictures, to grapple with issues of decay and impermanence. Roth takes a simple postcard and transforms it into a glittery pastiche of images that embrace the abstract as well as the photographic. Harrison, whose work was featured in the Whitney Biennial 2008, fashions three-dimensional forms that range from the bulbous to the architectonic. Rachel Harrison is a contributor to the Franz West exhibition catalogue and Roth was both a friend of Wests and a participant in the art scene of Vienna, where West still resides.
Front Room: Dieter Roth & Rachel Harrison is curated by Darsie Alexander, BMA Senior Curator of Contemporary Art.