“Dana Schutz returns to Cleveland with a new exhibition, Eating Atom Bombs, featuring a group of 12 paintings and three drawings created primarily in the past year. Seven of these works have never been exhibited before. The exhibition’s title speaks to the precariousness of our current political and social moment. Eating Atom Bombs belongs to a number of museum programs that have recently featured contemporary artists who are from or who trained in Northeast Ohio, including Wadsworth and Jae Jarrell, Scott Olson, Jerry Birchfield, Liz Roberts and Henry Ross.
Eating Atom Bombs seeks to illustrate not what tears us apart and divides us, but rather the universal emotions and experiences that bind us together. Many of the paintings that will be on view depict figures in states of introspection, conflict, and concern. Together they mourn, console, defend themselves, and flee the scene. Some of the figures even seem to be aware of themselves and the edges of the painting, reacting against the limitations of their surroundings. Biblical motifs pervade these works, including wrath, expulsion, deposition (the descent of Christ from the cross), and pestilence; the figures either set off for a new world or struggle with the one they have.” — The Cleveland Museum of Art
“In her newest works, Schutz continues to reflect on the quickly changing social and political landscape in the US,” said Reto Thüring. “In a manner that is characteristic for Schutz, the paintings are comical and sad, playful and grave at the same time.”
Eating Atom Bombs is curated by Reto Thüring, Curator of Contemporary Art and Chair of Modern, Contemporary, and Decorative Art, and Performing Arts, with Beau Rutland, former Associate Curator of Contemporary Art, in close collaboration with the artist.
Images courtesy The Cleveland Museum of Art.