The Armory Show | 2016

ED YOUNG | Special Project

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EXHIBITION TEXT

New York, USA

03.03.16 – 06.03.16

Ed Young presents ALL SO FUCKING AFRICAN (2016), one of eight special projects for The ARMORY Show’s invitational Focus: African Perspectives section, curated by Julia Grosse and Yvette Mutumba.

The multifarious site-specific installation combines text and objects that elicit an initially comical absurdity, but lastingly sinister impression, while still articulating a far more contentious issue. Threaded throughout the work is a biting wit, which becomes all the more disarming when coupled with Young’s cynical solemnity. The piece offers a multitude of layers with various double, even triple, entendres for the viewer to explore, while simultaneously critiquing the current automatic ‘pimping’ of extrinsic cultures for the benefit of appearing as all-inclusive or alternative.

The installation wields a popular and sub-culture based visual language, making it immediately accessible. This slew of innuendo and the undermining of perceived meaning, displays Young’s manipulation of symbolism alongside the relativity of visual and linguistic understanding. Young’s work implies a pseudo-ambiguity, yet offers audiences the opportunity for introspection, should they be willing to accept initial discomfort at the perturbing presentation.

Read ED YOUNG by Ed Young, 2016 by Lwandile Fikeni.

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