"Rivane Neuenschwander: A Day Like Any Other" at MAM through October 16
At the entrance to MAM's new exhibit, a work called I Wish Your Wish (2003) fills three walls with thousands of shiny, rainbow-hued ribbons flowing like hair plugs from pencil-width holes drilled into the walls. At first, the sprawling installation looks like a massive, richly textured abstract painting that glimmers under the gallery lights. But closer inspection reveals that each ribbon is silk-screened with the plea of a visitor who has engaged the work before. The installation is one of several interactive pieces in a traveling show of work by artist Rivane Neuenschwander. "A Day Like Any Other" spans 11 major works created over the past decade by the Brazilian artist and marks her first museum survey. A major installation that immerses viewers is Rain Rains (2002), which converts MAM's central ground-floor gallery into a slow-drip, acoustical summer shower. Neuenschwander has suspended an array of 33 water-filled tin buckets on steel cables hanging from the ceiling and then placed corresponding buckets under them. Each of the airborne pails has a small hole drilled in its bottom, causing continual droplets. The serene symphony of ambient drips is meant to evince a liquid notion of time. At the edge of the installation is a ladder used by museum staff to refill the drained containers with the water collected below every four hours. Just like the recycled droplets, a circle motif repeats throughout the show. Ovals are of primary importance in Neuenschwander's work, which employs bubbles, eggs, hole-punched confetti, moons, and constellations, often as symbols of fragility, the feminine principal, or the natural world.
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