New Museum in New York presents a midcareer survey of the concept artist Rivane Neuenschwander (b. 1967, Belo Horizonte, Brazil). It is a very personal show.
I like most the piece ‘I Wish Your Wish’ of 2003. She uses a tradition from Brazil: At the church of Nosso Senhor do Bonfim in Salvador, the faithful tie silk ribbons to their wrists and to the gates of the church. They believe that the wishes are granted, when the ribbons fall off later.
When you enter the New Museum, you see a wall of hundreds of this kind of ribbons. They have the wishes of past visitors of the installation written on them. All Visitors are invited to choose and remove a ribbon, tie it to their wrists, and replace it with a new wish written on a slip of paper. These new wishes then will be printed on new ribbons for the installation.
I think this is a great work, because it shows you how relative, or occasionally similar, your very individual wishes are! I stood there for a while and studied other people’s wishes before I chose one.
Another great piece is ‘First Love’ of 2005: Ms. Neuschwander instructs the visitors to describe the face of their first love to a professional police sketch drawer. As this is quite a while ago, I decided this would be too hard for me… (Obviously, I successfully managed to block the memory after the separation successfully.)
Then, all the fist love faces are hung side by side on the wall.
I like the art of Rivane Neuenschwander, because it is 'classic' concept art and very emotional at the same time. This is something many other concept artists don't want to do, or cannot do. I like that.
Rivane Neuenschwander: ‚A Day like any other‘ at the New Museum, New York
Through 19 September 2010