I admit that I had not visited the current, midtown location of Anton Kern Gallery since they moved from West 20th Street in the Chelsea Gallery District, which was a few years ago at this point. Because Midtown. But then I heard that one of my very favorite living artists, David Shrigley, had an upcoming exhibit at gallery, so I had to attend. Because David Shrigley is The Shit.
Fluff War, as it is called, is Shrigley’s seventh solo exhibition at Anton Kern, and it is comprised of the titular large-scale kinetic sculpture, plus two neon sculptures, and 100 new drawings. If you follow me on the Instagram (@gailpink61) — which you should — then you have seen an assortment of Shrigley’s hilarious drawings which I have been posting over the past couple of weeks under the hashtag #dailyshrigley. Since they are already on The ‘Gram, as the kids says, I will not be posting any of the drawings here. This post is just about the Fluff War itself.
The structure of Fluff War is a ten foot by ten foot square enclosure akin to a miniature soccer stadium or a giant air hockey table. Trapped inside are clusters of black wooly fluff being blown about a smooth white floor by gusts of wind coming in through surrounding vents. Below is a video I filmed of the Fluff at War!
Mesmerizing and fun! War is a cheeky misnomer for what the fluff is engaged in. Incapable of exerting its own will, the fluff is at the whim of hidden fans, randomly sequenced by a computer program, blowing at varying intervals and strengths. It remains unclear which fluff is winning or losing, what the objective is, or if there is one at all. Regardless, one can easily become an enraptured observer of this nonsensical activity.
Fluff War Observed From the Gallery’s Second Floor!
David Shrigley’s Fluff War Runs Through June 15th, 2019 at Anton Kern Gallery, Located at 16 East 55th Street, in NYC.