Mike Kelley, Mr. and Mrs. Hermaphrodite, 2005, pencil, ink, gouache, and crayon on paper, 65 1/8 x 47 3/8".


Mike Kelley

Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
Museumplein 10
December 15–April 1

Curated by Eva Meyer-Hermann with Ann Goldstein, the Kelley Studio, Estate of Mike Kelley

Jack Goldstein once quipped that the reason he left Metro Pictures was the low production value of Mike Kelley’s work. But Goldstein could never have guessed the degree to which Kelley’s powerful scale and polish would ultimately eclipse his own. If Kelley, early on, used shoddy materials to invoke a subordinate vernacular culture, his later embrace of high-tech fabrication effectively channeled the underside of our popular information economy— the reperformance of images, whether via sexting and online dating or in the scanning and viewing of a photograph’s surface. In an age of digital reproduction, Kelley’s oeuvre demands that we reappraise what it means to represent and what it means to recall, questions to be asked many times over in this first full career survey.