New York

Gotscho

Nicole Klagsbrun

As the installation created by French artist Gotscho pointed out, weddings are strict rituals governed by rigid conventions. Staging is a large part of the affair, and Gotscho, who has a background in theater, has “staged” his Wedding (all works 1993) accordingly. Neatly paired rows of tuxedos and wedding gowns were hung on opposite walls, presenting a range of these requisite, constraining costumes.

All of this rigidity obviously has something to do with the fact that weddings are society’s way of recognizing sexual union. Gotscho’s work stressed the violence below the social surface: “union” here was depicted as a twisted, tortured intertwining of bride-and-groom wear. Diaphanous white wedding gowns, meant to evoke innocence and purity, engulfed the grooms’ suits, which hung like strangled corpses amid the folds of fabric. One sheer dressing gown opened at the throat to release (or

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