Go See – New York: Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ inaugurates the Park Avenue Armory’s Drill Hall Commission

May 25th, 2009

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

The Park Avenue Armory opened its first commissioned art installation, Brazilian artist Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino,’ in the Wade Thompson Drill Hall last week. The installation is made largely of Lycra tulle, sewed onto a system of skeletal wooden frames. Hanging from a large canopy are numerous bags of spices: cloves, cumin, ginger, and others. The Park Avenue Armory aims to be a public urban art space like the Tate Modern Turbine Hall in London and the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, and with its first commission has followed the trend of participatory art along the lines of Relational Aesthetics.  Though Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ takes a more egalitarian and less academic approach to public art, with the current installation as a crowd pleaser.

Park Avenue Armory
Hey, Drill This! Park Avenue Armory Goes Sci-Fi [NY Times]
Into the Embrace of a Great Spicy, Gauzy Mother [NY Times]
Bones, Spice, Lycra Play in Neto’s Huge, Fantastic Installation [Bloomberg]
Art That Loves You Back: Ernesto Neto at the Park Avenue Armory. [C-Monster]
Ernesto Neto’s Inaugural Night at the Armory [Vanity Fair]

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

Neto’s work derives from that of Lygia Clark and Hélio Oticica, Brazilian artists who, in the Sixties, pioneered the viewer’s involvement with the art product. The installation in the cast drill hall of the armory encourages sensory engagement throughout. The skeleton frames have created tunnels through which viewers must navigate; a womb-like scenario where the phallic tubes of spices seem nonthreatening. Neto said, in an interview with WNYC, ‘It’s not about sex. It’s about comfortness (sic). It’s about love.’ Viewers are encourage to touch and smell and lay down. While sexual metaphors abound, overall, the installation encourages an innocent pleasure.

Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ at the Park Avenue Armory at 66th Street runs through June 14, 2009 in NY.

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via C-Monster

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via NY Times

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via NY Times

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via Park Avenue Armory

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via NY Times

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Installation view of Ernesto Neto’s ‘anthropodino’ via NY Times