This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001

29Mar/18

DANH VO SELECTS: THE EXORCIST

The Exorcist is screening at the Guggenheim in conjunction with Danh Vo exhibition

The Exorcist is screening at the Guggenheim in conjunction with Danh Vo exhibition

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
1071 Fifth Ave. at 89th St.
Saturday, March 31, free with museum admission, 5:00
Exhibition continues Friday - Wednesday through May 9
212-423-3587
www.guggenheim.org

In conjunction with Danh Vo’s revelatory Guggenheim exhibition, “Take My Breath Away,” the Vietnamese-born Danish artist has curated “Danh Vo Selects,” consisting of screenings of films that have meaning to him. When he was a child, his mother made him watch horror movies because she was too scared to watch them alone. The series concludes on March 31 at 2:30 with Jean Pierre and Luc Dardenne’s 1999 Rosetta — “I confess my brain was gang-raped by the films of Jean-Pierre Dardenne and his brother, Luc. Rosetta and her phallic drive to secure a job (and therefore a place in society) is burned into my mind,” Vo says about the film — followed at 5:00 by William Friedkin’s The Exorcist, which plays an important role in the exhibit. Vo has titled several works, in which he combines sculptural fragments from different time periods into a new piece (inspired by Regan’s ability to spin her head all the way around), after lines spoken by Regan when she is possessed by the demon. The film “was shown to Vo by his horror-film-obsessed mother at the age of seven, when it no doubt made a terrifyingly indelible impression,” exhibition curator Katherine Brinson notes. “The film’s interrogation of religious faith and doubt, its depiction of the appropriated and dislocated body, and its themes of parental nurture and neglect can all be similarly traced in the artist’s work.” He also gave them unusual titles just so curators and critics would have to mention them. Thus, Your mother sucks cocks in Hell; Dimmy, why you did this to me?; and Shove it up your ass, you faggot! combine Roman marble from the first to second century with French Early Gothic oak. In addition, Lick me, lick me consists of part of a Greek-marble Apollo in a wooden crate, and another work features a wall of mirrors engraved with more quotes, as if they’re being spoken directly to the viewer. I’ve seen The Exorcist three times; twice it scared the hell out of me, but the middle time the audience and I laughed our heads off, as if it were a comedy. Which of course it’s not. As a bonus, on May 8 at 7:00 and 9:30, the experimental California band Xiu Xiu will present “Deforms the Unborn,” a new, extended song inspired by demonic possession in general and Vo’s use of The Exorcist specifically.

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