Mierle Laderman Ukeles

Maintenance Art Works, 1969-1979
May 8 – June 13, 1998

TimeOut New York
New Yorker

Installation view south gallery

Installation view south gallery

I Make Maintenance Art One Hour
Every Day, September 16-October 20,

19 color photographs, 1 drawing with collage,
4 text pages, 1 notebook, 1 announcement,
1 set of labels, 1 button

The Sorting of the Socks:
Hommage to Mu Ch'i
, 1973
from Doing the Laundry photo series
5 black and white photographs mounted
on foam core

Dressing to Go Out/Undressing
to Go In
, 1973
95 black and white photographs, foam
core, chain and dust rag
55 x 42 1/4 inches overall

Washing/Tracks/Maintenance: Outside,
July 22, 1973

Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford
12 black and white photographs, 2 text pages

Click here for a PDF version of the following
Press Release.
Immediate Release: April 20, 1998



MAY 8 – JUNE 13

The Feldman Gallery will exhibit early work by Eleanor Antin and Mierle Laderman Ukeles, two major artists of international stature whose work over almost four decades has influenced the direction and concerns of contemporary art. Eleanor Antin will exhibit Portraits of 8 New York Women, assemblages of common, everyday objects which function as portraits, originally exhibited at the Chelsea Hotel in 1970. Mierle Laderman Ukeles will exhibit photographs and text documentation of performances from 1969-1979 which relate to the collision of art and maintenance, questioning the definition of unlimited freedom in a finite world.

One of the few women conceptualists, Antin assembled her Portraits of 8 New York Women from new consumer goods, evoking both the pop sensibility of the day and the comic pathos arising from the tacky nature of mass produced American products. These assemblages were intended as unsentimental representations of the portrait subjects – independent women with whom Antin shared a common ground of experience. As a young feminist, Antin considered the nature of woman as subject, representing these women’s actions and life choices rather than their bodily appearance as in traditional art practice. These tightly structured conceptual portraits presage Antin’s preoccupation with fictive personas and theatrical stagings.

Eleanor Antin is a pioneering intermedia artist who works in photography, film, video, installation, and performance. She has had many solo exhibitions including The Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum, with a major retrospective set for 1999 at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. She will appear at the Whitney Museum at Philip Morris on May 6 as part of its performance series.

In 1969, "frazzled and dazzled" by the requirements of surviving as an artist while being a new mother, Mierle Ukeles wrote The Manifesto for Maintenance Art: "Care." Starting with personal maintenance, the work broadened to the maintenance of cultural institutions, urban and societal maintenance, and sustaining the earth itself. From 1977-80, the artist interacted with the entire New York City Department of Sanitation in the ground-breaking Touch Sanitation Performance.

Mierle Ukeles is a visionary artist whose work has evolved into elaborate collaborative projects amid the urban landscape throughout the world. Current commissioned projects include the Fresh Kills Landfill and the Hudson River Marine Transfer Station in New York, Bronx NY Firehouse, the Maine College of Art, Danehy Park in Cambridge, the Schuylkill River Park in Philadelphia, and the Hiriya Landfill in Israel. Unburning Freedom Hall, a major installation, was exhibited at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art in 1997.

There will be a reception, Friday, May 8, 5:30 – 7:30. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00 – 6:00. Monday by appointment. For more information, contact Rita MacDonald.

Copyright 2009 Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, Inc. Click here for more detailed information.