Lever House, 390 Park Avenue
The Lever House Art Collection presented E.V. Day’s Bride Fight in the Lever House Lobby Gallery from May 5 – August 26, 2006. Bride Fight, a spectacular high-tension string up of two dueling bridal gowns, was E.V. Day’s most complex and most ambitious work to date.
Using heavy-duty fishing line and hardware, E.V. Day eviscerated the two white gowns along with their accompanying tulle veils, long lace gloves, garters, shoes and, even, strands of hair. A white glove grasped a fistful of blonde braid; another simultaneously burst a string of pearls around the other’s neck. Frozen in the extreme of distention, the materials were captured in a thicket of hundreds of monofilaments at their moment of obliteration.
Taking as her subject an eruption in the traditional social fabric-- the idea of two “glowing” brides locked in mortal combat-- E.V. Day touched something dark in the American social unconscious. As opined on a website announcing a new reality show on dueling brides-to-be, one blogger offered that “the reality is that with all the planning and frustration, by the time the big day comes 'round, Bridezilla is ready to kill and I am ready to watch.”
E.V. Day’s piece may have triggered some fetishistic responses, but it was a work primarily characterized by the humor and anxiety that accompanied a transformation of tradition. Fierce but nonetheless liberating, Bride Fight felt more like the jouissance of exploded boundaries than the pathology of confined ones.
In the dramatically extrusive trains and the majestic billowing of tulle, the implied brides took on a bit of a sci-fi or anime feel, where starchy capes were folded crisply in stark chiaroscuro and pointy hair didn't blow in the wind. The dissection into intersecting planes of material also lent a 3D CAD-rendered feeling to the piece, making this very traditional subject feel somehow uniquely contemporary.
Bride Fight developed from a series of installations called Exploding Couture, begun in 1999, in which Day suspended women’s dresses in space. For example, in Bombshell (1999), exhibited at the 2000 Whitney Biennial, Day took a piece of iconic attire (Marilyn Monroe’s white halter dress) and arranged it to feel as if the forces of the implied figure were so powerful that the garment literally blows off, as if outgrew its stereotype.
E.V. Day had a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum at Altria in 2001, where she installed G-Force, a work in which she suspended hundreds of thongs from the ceiling in fighter jet formations. Day had a ten-year survey exhibition last year at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University for which a color catalogue was produced. E.V. Day’s exhibition Intergalactic Installations was on view at the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum From April 22 – June 18, 2006. E.V. Day was represented by Deitch Projects.
The Lever House Art Collection was formed by RFR Realty LLC, the owner of the Lever House Building, and organized by curator Richard D. Marshall. Four artists per year were commissioned to create works specifically for the landmarked Lever House lobby, and the works were exhibited in the glass-enclosed space for a three-month period. The lobby was open to the public and free of charge. Past exhibitions included works by John Chamberlain, Barnaby Furnas, Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, Jorge Pardo, Keith Sonnier, and Peter Wegner, Sarah Morris and Folkert de Jong.
March 8 - 11, 2018
We will present a special solo project by the artist JR.
Image: JR, Migrants, Walking New York City, 2015
April - May 2018
18 Wooster Street
76 Grand Street
New York, NY 10013
18 Wooster Street
New York, NY 10013
Monday – Friday
10 AM – 6 PM
Thursday – Saturday
Noon – 6 PM
+1 (212) 343-7300
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