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David Altmejd: Heads | "Exclusive" | Art21

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Episode #190: Filmed in 2011, David Altmejd discusses the head sculptures that he creates to accompany each new body of work. "Some sculptors make drawings, I make heads," says Altmejd. By using the same materials found in his larger works, he distills his larger ideas into compact form. Works in the film are shown at the artist's studio in Queens, and in his solo exhibition at Andrea Rosen Gallery in Manhattan.

With an almost childlike fascination for objects that grow, transform, and reshape themselves, David Altmejd creates sculptures, suffused with ornament, that blur distinctions between interior and exterior, surface and structure, representation, and abstraction. Altmejd abandons standard narrative conventions in favor of an exploration of materials, processes, and structures. In diorama-like tableaux, Altmejd pairs objects laden with symbolism—crystals, gold chain, and taxidermy—with virtuosic applications of materials such as plaster, thread, and mirrors.

Learn more about the artist at:
http://www.art21.org/artists/david-altmejd

CREDITS: Producer: Ian Forster. Consulting Producer: Wesley Miller & Nick Ravich. Interview: Susan Sollins. Camera: Jarred Alterman. Sound: Merce Williams. Editor: Morgan Riles & Mark Sutton. Artwork Courtesy: David Altmejd & Andrea Rosen Gallery. Theme Music: Peter Foley.

"Exclusive" is supported, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; 21c Museum Hotel, the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, and by individual contributors.