With sculptures and paintings


He began with some big names in humble mediums. Among them are Chinese artist Cai Guo-Qiang, who often works in gunpowder, and British artist Andy Goldsworthy, who fashions twigs, mud, and snow into outdoor installations that disintegrate naturally. Brazilian-born, New York–based Vik Muniz is represented here by documentation of his massive 2002 “drawings” made with a steam shovel and photographed from a helicopter.

“There are some major figures out there, and the thrill is finding the emerging talent to pair with them,” says McFadden. The museum commissioned new works specially for the show: landscapes etched in soot-coated bottles by Jim Dingilian, life-size figures made of dirt by James Croak, and flammable-paint works by artist duo Tim Simpson and Sarah van Gameren of Studio Glithero, among other installations.

Starting March 6, a series of pieces will be created in front of the public. The program, titled “Swept Away Projects,” includes work by Linda Florence, who will cover a swath of the museum’s floor with an elaborate pattern in chalk. “On the last day of the show, we are going to have a ball, during which people will be allowed to dance on the floor” and wipe away the design, says Museum of Arts and Design director Holly Hotchner.

With sculptures and paintings made of seemingly dirty materials, aren’t the curators concerned that some of the art may be inadvertently cleaned up? McFadden isn’t worried. British artist Catherine Bertola is presenting site-specific art made partially from dust collected at the museum. To assist in the project, the custodial staff gathered dust for weeks, McFadden explains. “So I think by the time the work is created they’ll have gained a certain respect for the material. They’ve been the harvesters.”

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