Noon @ the 'Spoon Public Tours - "Dread & Delight"

Sep 11, 12pm - 12:20pm

Noon @ the 'Spoon Public Tours -

Our 20-minute Noon @ the 'Spoon tour is a fun way to explore a new exhibition during your lunch break. Offered the second Tuesday of the month. Free and open to the public.

This month we will be touring the exhibition Dread & Delight: Fairy Tales in an Anxious World, on view through December 9, 2018.

This fall the Weatherspoon Art Museum premieres Dread & Delight: Fairy Tales in an Anxious World, an exhibition that brings together the work of contemporary artists who use classical fairy tales to address the complexities of our lives today. While some embrace the stories’ promises of transformation and happy endings, others plumb the stories’ more troubling elements—poverty, addiction, and exploitations of power.

No matter their approach, each of the artists dismantles and reassembles the tales in imaginative ways. In a 1980s arcade-like video by Ericka Beckman, the story of Cinderella becomes a means to talk about women’s proscribed social roles; in Timothy Horn’s nearly life-size carriage made of crystallized candy, it becomes an opportunity to address queer identity and notions of the so called rags-to-riches American dream. In Alison Saar’s tar and gold-leaf covered sculpture Blonde Dreams, the story of Rapunzel becomes an avenue for reconsidering racial constructions of beauty; in MK Guth’s 1800-foot-long braid Ties of Protection and Safe Keeping, it becomes the site for a conversation about values and desires.

Many of the fairy tales featured in Dread and Delight will be readily familiar. Others are lesser known and provide an opportunity to explore the rich breadth of the fairy tale tradition. Throughout the exhibition, one finds that the artists have engaged with fairy tales across time—from early Italian, French, and German anthologies; to Walt Disney’s 20th-century animations; to postmodern retellings by authors such Angela Carter and Margaret Atwood. Collectively they remind us that fairy tales have never been merely children’s tales. Rather, these age-old stories of wonder are powerful tools for making sense of life’s stark—and often dark—realities.

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