Ydessa Hendeles “Death to Pigs“ at Barbara Edwards Contemporary, Toronto
Barbara Edwards Contemporary is pleased to present “Death to Pigs”, a new work by Canadian artist-curator Ydessa Hendeles. This is Hendeles’s first show in Toronto since the renowned exhibition space of the Ydessa Hendeles Art Foundation closed in 2012 after providing a contemporary art programme for 25 years. Since then, the Toronto- and New York-based artist has had major exhibitions of her work in leading museums in London, Tel Aviv and New York.
In “Death to Pigs”—the title references the infamous Manson Family murders in the summer of 1969—Hendeles continues her exploration of our social and political capacity to put constructive, sometimes utopian, forces to destructive ends. This perverse duality runs through our history, turning hopefulness into hopelessness, empathy into apathy, and the social outsider into a non-person. The central image in the show is that of the domestic pig, an animal figuring prominently in world culture in everything from sacred religious observance to fairy tales and mass media. Though ranked higher in intelligence than dogs and cats, the pig stands as a metaphor for negative human qualities and for human groups considered beyond the pale of social norms. Working with a tightly choreographed assemblage of art, artefacts, photography and audio-visual, “Death to Pigs” is a provocative, psychologically charged meditation on human nature.
at Barbara Edwards Contemporary, Toronto
until 25 November 2016