Larry Krone’s campfire exposition
When you walk into the museum there is a small show by Wendy Huhn put up to coincide and complement Krone’s show upstairs. They both use pop imagery, are very colorful, and both artists share an attachment to images from the past. Huhn is based in Dexter, Oregon, more of a cowboy town than New York City where Larry Krone currently resides. I’ve really enjoyed the new location of the Contemporary Craft Museum and it’s interesting to see how they utilize this space for the ever-changing shows. I had no idea what to expect and, as is usual for me, I talked to the guard who explained to me his excitement about seeing this show progress. The back wall is a work in progress. Two volunteers were clocking in and getting ready to cut colored Mylar and tape up to the wall along the specific lines that Krone drew. On the floor, small pipe cleaner sculptures with Mylar were placed around to give the feel of the tumbleweeds that blow around in the desert. The back wall piece made me think of Vegas and I could imagine that when it was completed Krone would shake his booty right in front. Oh, by the way, he passed me as I was walking into the space. I thought I should say something like “Uh, hi I’m Ben Rosenberg. I’m going to write a blog about this. Looking forward to seeing what you do.” But I didn’t. I was immediately drawn to the wall of sketches and pictures that are to the left of his work in progress. There were photo studies of campfires, drawing ideas for compositions reminiscent of Peter Max drawings, all the ideas that go on in Krone’s head. I noticed that his design for this space was very similar to what he did in St. Louis at the Contemporary Art Museum from the catalogue he had pinned up. I was curious to read in the catalogue that he has never witnessed cowboys or spent even a day witnessing what their daily life involves. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it would be interesting to see how the mysticism that he has built around the image of the cowboy would change in his art if he were to do so. This is his fascination, romanticism about the image of the cowboy and his interpretation. By the soft sculpture logs campfire you just want to touch it, and more so if you are a child, but a sign reads touching harms the art along with a credit to the artist who made this work possible, Anthea Zeltzman. The artist Christo runs through my mind with the way Krone took the benches from the museum and wrapped them with burlap and rope. By the time I got around to looking at the industrial coat rack with his mix of hand sewn feminine and masculine clothes, and reading his campfire book, I was really looking forward to seeing him perform. If you haven’t seen this installation yet come by and ask the guard for any anecdotes he has to share.
posted by Ben Killen Rosenberg