Paul McCarthy’s exhibition at the New Museum in 2001 surveys the Los Angeles-based artist’s influential but under-examined body of work. The New Museum organized four window installations over two months that presented responses by younger artists to McCarthy’s practice.
March 6 - 11: The window installation Fighting for You by collaborative team hollyandgolly (Annette Hollywood and Anna Gollwitzer) explores the concept of voyeurism. The multimedia piece—the first work the team produced—features female boxers aiming their punches at the viewer.1
March 20 - 25: Franco Mondini-Ruiz’s window installation Untitled Grid No. 7 takes up the theme of the absurd.2
April 7 - 8: Claude Wampler’s window performance Bad Job/Cruel World: Stupidity 2001, Part II consists of a sculpture of a woman with her back to the street and a stunt professional in a work uniform repeatedly climbing a ladder to repair the underwear on the sculpture. The performance lasts eight hours for each of the two days.3
April 17 - 22: The final window installation is of two videos: Cheryl Donegan’s Leider, Whoa Whoa Studio for Courbet, Cellardoor(2000) and Paul McCarthy’s The Painter (1995).4
“Paul McCarthy’s role as purveyor of difficult truths has made his work shocking and incomprehensible to many viewers. This has put McCarthy in an unusual position—he is a well-known mid-career artist with an evolution that is heavily shrouded in myth and innuendo. As a result, the innovative aspects of his work, as well as its historical roots, have tended to be overlooked.”5