Saturday, June 28, 2014

Kara Walker's A Subtlety at the Domino Sugar Factory

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker's installation "A Subtlety, or the Marvelous Sugar Baby, an homage to the unpaid and overworked artisans who have refined our sweet tastes from the can fields to the kitchens of the new world on the occasion of the demolition of the Domino sugar refining plant" is as massive as its name. (And the lines to get get in are almost as long.) Whereas the cut-paper silhouettes on which Walker built her reputation are remarkable for their presentation of depravity in the guise of delicacy, A Subtlety is forceful and overwhelming. But that's not to say that it's heavy-handed: the sculpted sugar has a surprising refinement (ahem), and the work is so historically layered, engaging with everything from ancient Egypt to Sidney Mintz, that it rewards numerous interpretations.

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety

Kara Walker, A Subtlety


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