Museum Acquires New Artworks with YCC Support

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  • Karla Black, Make Yourself Necessary, 2012
  • Margaret Lee, Eggplant (phone), 2012
  • Margaret Lee, Eggplant (hello), 2012

The Guggenheim recently acquired artworks by artists Karla Black and Margaret Lee with funds from the Young Collectors Council Acquisitions Committee. Black’s installation Make Yourself Necessary (2012) and Lee’s sculpture and photograph Eggplant (phone) and Eggplant (hello) (both 2012) are exciting additions to the museum’s contemporary holdings.

Karla Black’s precarious sculptures bring together unusual materials including chalk, dirt, household products, and makeup such as eye shadow, nail polish, lip gloss, and hairspray. Exploring notions of beauty and abjection, her assemblages are at once fragile and monumental, entropic and pristine. In Make Yourself Necessary Black achieves her goal of “floating color in space.” The work is a room-sized sculpture that takes the form of a sinuous wreath of crumpled cellophane onto which the artist has sprinkled a pale pink dust, allowing remnants to fall on the floor below. Although threatening to collapse at any moment, the work preserves what Black considers to be a hard-won moment of ideal interaction between texture, color, space, and light.

Exploring the nuances of representation in the digital age, Margaret Lee creates uncanny replicas of everyday objects, which she calls “handmade ready-mades.” Eggplant (phone) is a hybrid object that is neither an eggplant nor a phone—it is a meticulously crafted, hand-painted, and plaster-casted sculpture. Eggplant (hello), a photograph of the sculpture, adds another layer of visual remove from the original that further emphasizes the tension between reality and representation. The advertising style of the photograph also demonstrates Lee’s interest in how the perception of images is motivated by desire. Perhaps illuminating this, Lee says the following about her sculptures: “I want to give you exactly what you want and not give you anything at all.”

A dynamic group of young professionals between the ages of 21 and 40, the YCC Acquisitions Committee raises important funds for the Guggenheim that enables it to champion the work of emerging artists like Black and Lee. The YCC Acquisitions Committee meets twice yearly to discuss new works and vote on acquisitions. Over the last 15 years the YCC has supported the acquisition of more than 120 works for the museum’s collection. For more information on the YCC, see the membership page or contact ycc@guggenheim.org.

Karla Black, Make Yourself Necessary, 2012. Cellophane, sellotape, paint, plaster powder, powder paint. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Purchased with funds contributed by the Young Collector’s Council with additional funds contributed by Josh Elkes and Caroline Calloway, Ahmar M. and Noreen K. Ahmad, Jeremy E. Steinke, Astrid Tomilson Hill, and Anne Huntington, 2013; Margaret Lee, Eggplant (phone), 2012. Plaster, acrylic paint, and phone parts; dimensions variable; object: 22.9 x 22.9 x 15.2 cm, A.P. 1/1, edition of 3. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Purchased with funds contributed by the Young Collector’s Council with additional funds contributed by Josh Elkes and Caroline Calloway, Ahmar M. and Noreen K. Ahmad, Jeremy E. Steinke, Astrid Tomilson Hill, and Anne Huntington, 2013. Photo: Joerg Lohse, courtesy the artist and Jack Hanley Gallery; Margaret Lee, Eggplant (hello), 2012. Inkjet print, 22.9 x 30.5 cm, Edition: 3/3. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York,Purchased with funds contributed by the Young Collector’s Council with additional funds contributed by Josh Elkes and Caroline Calloway, Ahmar M. and Noreen K. Ahmad, Jeremy E. Steinke, Astrid Tomilson Hill, and Anne Huntington, 2013

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