NEW YORK, NY.-
For her first solo museum presentation, Alex Bag debuts a newly commissioned video installation she has made for the Whitney Museum of American Art
, inspired by a popular and progressive 1970s children's syndicated television show, "The Patchwork Family." Continuing the commentary on contemporary media culture that has characterized her work to date, Bag reimagines the earlier TV show, in a darkly satiric vein, peopling her studio audience with real-life children. The children are regaled by and react to the shows special guests, an assortment of characters including an abstract artist, an animal wrangler, a wizard, a psycho-pharmacologist, and others. The work goes on view in the Anne & Joel Ehrenkranz Lobby Gallery beginning January 9, 2009.
In the 1970s, The Patchwork Family, like the earlier 1960s WPIX-TV show The Carol Corbett Show, featured Bags mother as the hostess, sitting behind a desk with a puppet, interviewing guests and singing songs. Bag herself appeared as a guest on The Patchwork Family at a very young age. In the artist's current version, she plays the role of the hostess in a satirical take on the chipper, optimistic 70s prototype, now prone to depression and a darker world view, colored by Bags own mordant vision and complete with commercial breaks. Bag also uses footage from the original show, moving back and forth in time.
Alex Bag is well known for her work in video. She was born in 1969 in New York City, and currently lives and works in New Jersey. She received her BFA from Cooper Union. Her work has been shown at P.S. 1, the Tate, the Centre Georges Pompidou, the Museum of Modern Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and other spaces internationally. She has performed at The Knitting Factory and lectured at Yale, Parsons, Cal Arts, and the Getty Research Institute. This is her first solo museum show.