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Nick Cave: Until

The Momentary presents Nick Cave: Until, organized by MASS MoCA, on view September 12, 2020 to January 3, 2021. It is free for all to view, no tickets necessary.

Friday, September 18, 2020 to Sunday, January 3, 2021
Sun + Tue-Wed | 10am to 7pm, Thu-Sat | 10am to 10pm, Mon | Closed
Rates/Admission Prices

Admission is free for all.

The Momentary
507 SE E Street
Bentonville, AR 72712
Hours of Operation

Sun + Tue-Wed | 10am to 7pm
Thu-Sat | 10am to 10pm
Mon | Closed

Nick Cave: Until is the largest and most ambitious project yet from the renowned artist. This immersive exhibition is a visual feast for the eyes, spanning over 24,000 square feet of gallery space at the Momentary. But below its surface, Until is a response to the question: Is there racism in heaven?

In 1992 Chicago, Cave reflected on the Rodney King police beatings that took place in Los Angeles. Using found objects such as twigs in the park, he created his very first Soundsuit, a wearable sculpture that defends the body and masks identity. Since then, he has created over 500 Soundsuits. In Nick Cave: Until, Cave places viewers inside the metaphorical belly of one of his Soundsuits. 

The title Until references the phrase “innocent until proven guilty,” or, a reversal, “guilty until proven innocent.” According to Cave, Until came about after the Michael Brown incident in Ferguson, Missouri. “I really hadn’t thought about what I was going to do until that incident happened and then, all of a sudden, it became very clear,” said Cave. Within the exhibition, Cave addresses gender, race, and gun violence in America.

“In addition to being an immersive visual art exhibition, Nick Cave: Until is meant to be a place for reflection and introspection on race and gun violence in America,” said Lauren Haynes, director of artist initiatives and curator, contemporary art at Crystal Bridges and the Momentary. “The ideas and topics covered in Until are front of mind for many Black Americans on a day-to-day basis. It's our hope that with Until, others will spend some time considering these important issues and consider what they can do to help make change.” 

Nick Cave: Until is composed of six installations that come together to create an immersive space: Unarmed (2016), a wreath of beaded flowers with a cast bronze and metal hand pointing upward in the center; Flow Blow (2016), a wall of shimmering party streamers that dances by blowing fans, spelling the word “flow”; Hy-Dyve (2016), a 14-channel video installation with sound that repeats images of staring eyes in an eight-minute loop; Beaded Cliff Wall (2016), a netted wall constructed with millions of plastic hair pony beads, shoelaces, and rope; Kinetic Spinner Forest (2016), a collection of 16,000 hanging wind spinners displaying images of bullets, guns, and targets; and Crystal Cloudscape (2016), a massive work of mixed media featuring more than 10 miles of crystals, 24 chandeliers, and a private garden filled with found objects. Visitors can view the Crystal Cloudscape from above by climbing one of the four ladders up to the surface of the work, or observing it in its entirety from the Momentary’s lower mezzanine. For visitor safety, ladders to the Crystal Cloudscape will only allow one person at a time and will be cleaned regularly. Made specifically for the Momentary, the gallery walls adorn new wallpaper designed by Cave and his partner, artist Bob Faust.

“The Momentary is a purveyor of the present, offering an artistic reflection of the current moment. This moment, this remarkable year 2020, is all about change—adapting, listening actively, and learning how an art space can best serve the needs of every community member and visitor,” said Lieven Bertels, director of the Momentary. “It is clear that our work to eradicate racism and injustice requires long-term systemic change. Even as a young institution, we are committed to creating meaningful efforts to change our community. We will continue to offer art as a platform for important and difficult conversations about racism in America and current events. Nick Cave: Until does that beautifully.”

Cave is an artist and dancer known for his unique fabric sculptures and performances. Born in Fulton, Missouri in 1959, he studied fiber arts at the Kansas City Art Institute (BFA, 1982), before going on to receive his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan (1989). Cave also attended North Texas State University (1984-86) and trained with the renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Today, the artist lives and works in Chicago, where he recently opened a new multi-disciplinary creative space called Facility and serves as the director of the fashion program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Through the decades, Cave addresses issues of racial inequality in the United States through his work. Today, the artist’s works are held in the collections of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Detroit Institute of Arts, and the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, among others.

Text above from The Momentary press release on 9.10.20.

Image Credit:
Nick Cave
Crystal Cloudspace
Mixed Media

Nick Cave and Bob Faust
Wallwork (Until), 2020
Adhesive vinyl wallpaper
Photos: James Prinz and Doug Mason