Mark Leckey: Containers and Their Drivers is strangely familiar.
The exhibit at MoMA PS1 has a quality unlike most museum shows I've seen. There's a familiarity that is both comforting and unsettling. That familiarity doesn't come from the fact that I know Mark Lechey's work. Quite the contrary. Oh sure, I've seen images of some of these in art magazines. And I vaguely remember that he won the Turner Prize. But beyond that, I knew nothing about the artist or his efforts.
So why then, did it feel like Mark Leckey had somehow hijacked my memories, making my visit to MoMA PS1 freakishly personal and dream like?
The answer to that questions might be about this: There's a "Felix the Cat" thread that runs somewhat creepily through the show. A little over a year ago, I lost my best friend and confidant, Felix Flores. I suppose because of his name, there have always been strange references to Felix the Cat in our home. So the partially-deflated, inflatable Felix with a tray of offerings placed between its legs, or the grainy black and white video of a Felix the Cat figure spinning sadly, or the giant Felix headpiece/mask all spoke to me in a way that was personal, tragic, and somehow reassuring.
But it wasn't just the Felix allusions that made this show unexpectedly familiar. There were other elements too. From giant underpasses bathed in yellow street lights that felt like late night urban walks, to copies of other works of contemporary art reminding me of other recent shows, to familiar objects like speakers and tablets and TVs and refrigerators, to the lusciousness of a sparkling new Pearl snare drum; memories flooded my mind as I walked through the galleries at PS1. The result was dreamlike. a little bit magical, and occasionally nightmarish.
Whatever the reason, I'm now a Mark Leckey fan and I'll look for his work in future Art travels. Here are a few images from the show. Roll over the images to see more information.
Creative director and art nerd contemplating travel, books, theater, and art.