During the closing weekend of the special exhibition Prop Master: An Installation by Juan Logan and Susan Harbage Page, the Gibbes Museum of Art
will invite visitors to take home a piece of exhibition history. Museum goers can grab a box (or boxes) from the 10,000 that are the centerpiece of this critically acclaimed exhibition. Artists Juan Logan and Susan Harbage Page will be on hand to autograph boxes and encourage visitors to take home a symbol of Charleston s past.
Prop Master: An Installation by Juan Logan and Susan Harbage Page is a site-specific, large-scale installation created exclusively for the Gibbes. The exhibition, which opened in April and closes on July 19, draws materials from the museums permanent collection of portraits, landscape paintings, and archival materials. Artists Susan Harbage Page and Juan Logan juxtapose art objects drawn from the Gibbes collection with works of their own creation, to investigate the role of the institution of the museum as both a prop master and a prop with regard to race, class, and gender relations in Charleston society.
Strategically centered in the gallery, Prop Allocations or Accents for Gracious Living is an element of the exhibition that includes a platform holding 10,000 boxes. These boxes represent the 10,000 objects that comprise the museums collection. Interspersed among the 9,960 white boxes are 40 black ones that signify the works in the collection created by African Americans and acquired beginning in the 1950s. One of the black boxes is veiled, symbolizing the first work by an African American that became part of the Gibbes collection in 1943. Only long after its accession did it become known that its creator was African American.
We are excited about the opportunity to give this exhibition a proper closing. With Prop Master, Juan Logan and Susan Harbage Page have opened a critical discussion about the museum and our reflection of the community through the years. The dismantling of the 10,000 boxes will be symbolic but also fun. This is the first time weve been able to invite museum visitors to take part of an exhibition home, stated Gibbes Executive Director and Chief Curator Angela D. Mack.
Museum visitors can remove boxes from the exhibition platform throughout the weekend and special activities are planned during the three hours of the Deconstruction event on July 18. During the party, visitors can have the boxes that they remove signed by artists Juan Logan and Susan Harbage Page. Some lucky boxes will contain certificates for Gibbes Museum Store merchandise. All visitors will receive samples of gelato from Paolos Gelato and cookies from Sugar Bakeshop (while supplies last). The Deconstruction Party on Saturday, July 18 from 2pm 5pm is free with museum admission.