Exhibition Announcement and Checklist for the 1961 Exhibition at Alan Gallery. Bruce Conner.
Exhibition Announcement and Checklist for the 1961 Exhibition at Alan Gallery
Exhibition Announcement and Checklist for the 1961 Exhibition at Alan Gallery

Exhibition Announcement and Checklist for the 1961 Exhibition at Alan Gallery

New York: Alan Gallery, 1961. 8vo, single sheet folded once [folded size 3 3/4 x 8 1/2"]. Offset printed. Unillustrated.

The exhibition announcement and checklist for Bruce Conner's October 2 - October 1921, 961 exhibition at Alan Gallery in New York, an early and pivotal exhibition for the artist which took place shortly before his inclusion in the MOMA Assemblage exhibition, which would bring his work suddenly to a larger audience. It was the Alan Gallery exhibition that prompted one of Conner's most infamous conceptual actions centered around the assemblage 'Superhuman Devotion." The piece was shipped out to New York for the Alan Gallery exhibition, but was damaged in transit and arrived in pieces. Conner responded by hanging the now empty frame around it in the Alan Gallery exhibition, and, with the help of Ray Johnson, collected the rest of the pieces in a wooden box, drilling it, setting it on fire, and gluing objects to its surface. The two then took the remixed assemblage uptown to the opening of the MOMA show, where the two and the assemblage were denied entrance, despite Conner being an artist in the exhibition. They left the sculpture on the steps, where attendees had to pick their way around the object, and, after the exhibition, took the sculpture onto the Staten Island Ferry and threw it into the bay. The location of the frame is famously unknown. See the account in Kevin Hatch's Looking for Bruce Conner, pp. 33-34.

The sculpture is listed as being one of the works exhibited in the present checklist, and is the only ephemera we've encountered connected to this action, which, by calling into question institutional representation of artwork in the 1960's and provoking the East/West divide in the US Art world, is a key moment of conceptual art in the 1960's.

Rare. Only the second example we've handled or seen in the last decade.
Fine. Item #25328

Price: $250.00

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