Artist and comedian Lisa Levy threw off her robe and sat naked on the porcelain throne placed in the center of Christopher Stout Gallery. You heard that right. In her performance art piece The Artist is Humbly Present, Levy mocked the art world, pretension, and herself. During the performance, viewers were invited to sit opposite Levy on a facing toilet and interact with her in any way, other than touching her. If you’re familiar with Marina Ambramovic’s performance at MoMA, The Artist is Present, where viewers were invited to sit and face the artist in a chair, you’ll immediately understand the blatant reference.Read More
BY DALLAS ATHENT
The walls of Christopher Stout Gallery, New York are lined with expertly painted images drawn from porn by artist Linda Griggs. Faces with mouths agape moan in ecstasy. Next to these images are stories of people losing their virginity. One memory recalls “It really hurt. Tears were sliding down the side of my face. He didn’t notice. Then outside the window a bottle rocket went off and we laughed.”
What these stories do is show the reality of what “the first time” is often like, divorcing the over-saturated, hollywood version that porn teaches us is real from our psyche. Griggs’ adaptation of the images through the work of her own hand, restores them to an organic order on the page. As Griggs herself said, pornography creates unreasonable expectations. “Young women need to see this so they know it’s okay to be awkward.”
The collection is powerful and honest. Griggs has possibly made one of the most complete bodies of work to enhance feminist ideas in 2015 with this show.
Christopher Stout Gallery, New York is located on 299 Meserole Street. “The First Time Is Not Like Porn” is on view through the end of the month.
Gallery Hours: Thursday through Sunday, Noon-6:00pm and also by private appointment.
Photos by Dallas Athent