Kathleen Cullen


September 8 - October 21, 2006


Safe : An exploration of domesticity and alienation.. safety and hazard. Curated by A.S. Bessa


Safe, Tod Haynes' glorious film from 1995, meticulously follows the descent of an American suburban housewife into the dark depths of alienation and illness. Unable to find protection between the walls of an expensively appointed and maintained home, the main character, played by Julianne Moore, ultimately succumbs to a psychosomatic condition that requires her isolation from the very world that spoiled her. This exhibition, organized by A.S. Bessa, takes inspiration in Haynes' film without aiming to illustrate it. Its intention is rather to expand on Haynes' critique of contemporary life and mores by identifying correlations and parallels in contemporary art. In this selection of works, the issue of "safety" is not solely restricted to health issues, but opened up to reflect on the transient nature of art and our impulse to collect and protect it.


Safe includes important works from the 1970s by Hannah Wilke, Mierle Laderman Ukeles and the Brazilian conceptual artist Regina Vater. Additional drawings by Peter Saul, Jason Fox, Karen Kilimnik and Kay Rosen; photographs by Tina Barney, Larry Sultan and Susannah Ray; and mixed media works by Cheryl Donegan, Paul de Gusman, Cary Leibowitz and Karin Schneider.