by Laura Hutson
One of the greatest parts about Cheekwood's More Love pop-up stationed next to Zeitgeist on Saturday was the inclusion of a second installation of Felix Gonzalez-Torres' "Untitled," Ross in L.A., a ready-made piece that's just waiting to be assembled. Here's what I wrote about the it in the Scene's Fall Guide:
In it, 175 pounds of colorful wrapped candies are piled into a corner, waiting for audience members to pick up a piece and take it with them. The candy signifies González-Torres' lover Ross at his healthiest weight before he succumbed to AIDS — the disease that eventually killed him — so taking a piece of the candy, unwrapping it and holding its taste in your mouth becomes a kind of communion that allows you to participate in the work's symbolic destruction of the man at the same time you revel in his sweetness.
Of the two installations (see a photo of the piece at Cheekwood's Museum of Art after the jump), I think I preferred seeing it in the More Love pop-up exhibit. It was hot and I had on the thick flannel shirt I'd been wearing around the house all day, somehow completely unaware of the 85-degree weather. So I was sweaty, the candy was sticky, and there was a buzz of people at the bar set up across the room. "Ross" was positioned perfectly in the corner, spotlit against the cinderblock wall, and that seemed much more like a portrait of someone who was continuing to participate in life, even after death. I stuck my hand in the candy pile as far as it would go, grabbed a piece, crunched the candy between my teeth, and kept the wrapper in my back pocket all night.
See "Ross" at Cheekwood through Jan. 5.