E.V. DAY: SNAP!
Organized by Henry Urbach and Irene Shum
SNAP! by E.V. Day was the first site-specific exhibition at the Glass House. Conceived for the building known as Da Monsta – designed by Philip Johnson in 1995 as a visitor center and now a gallery – SNAP! interpreted the pavilion’s peculiar geometry and atmosphere both inside and out. Day roped the exterior of Da Monsta with massive climbing webs and populated the interior with an ensemble of recent sculpture that tease out the noir qualities of Johnson’s late work.
Da Monsta, located near the Glass House gate, is a jagged neo-Expressionist building of curves and contours. Responding to Johnson’s statement that “the building is alive,” the artist cast a net, capturing and staking Da Monsta to the ground. The dynamic interplay between Day and Da Monsta continued inside the building. Five recent sculptures – Spinneret (a study for Spidey Striptease), Silver Mummified Barbie, Wet Net, Pollinator, and Bandage Dress (white with chain) – occupied the first gallery. The second gallery presented an installation of tight directional lines that ricochet from Da Monsta’s unique contours. The recorded sound of a purring animal below the floor further exposed its strange alive-ness.
E.V. Day is best known for large-scale installations such as Divas Ascending at Lincoln Center, commissioned by New York City Opera and comprised of retired costumes from their archives. Bride Fight, a high-tension string-up of two dueling bridal gowns, was exhibited at Lever House as part of their collection, and G-Force, 200 thongs stretched to resemble jet fighters suspended in air force flying formation at the Whitney Museum’s Altria court near Grand Central Station. In 2012, inspired by her residency at the Monet Foundation, she recreated a living version of Monet’s water lily garden as an environmental backdrop for her photo series with Kembra Pfahler at The Hole Gallery. Day received her MFA in Sculpture from Yale University School of Art. The first work in her Exploding Couture series, Bombshell, was included in the 2000 Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art and is now in the museum’s permanent collection. She has had many solo exhibitions, including a mid-career survey at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University. Day has been awarded grants and residencies from The Versailles Foundation’s Munn Artists Program at Claude Monet’s Garden in Giverny, ArtPace San Antonio, New York Foundation for the Arts, Dieu Donné Paper Mill, and The Atlantic Center for the Arts. Day’s work is held in the permanent collections of The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Museum of Modern Art, The New Museum of Contemporary Art, The New York Public Library, Lever House, The Saatchi Collection, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, The National Museum of Women in the Arts, The Smithsonian Institution, and many private collections.
View virtual tour of SNAP! and listen to the Purring Chamber.