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Charles LeDray: workworkworkworkwork

Nov 18, 2010–Feb 13, 2011

Work from the exhibition

Charles LeDray (b.1960), Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, 1993. Fabric, wire, vinyl, silkscreen, zipper, 26 ¾ x 54 inches (67.9 × 137.2 cm) overall. Private Collection, Houston, TX. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b.1960), Catcher’s Vest, 2005–2006. Fabric, thread, cotton batting, leather, elastic, grosgrain ribbon, metal, metal patina, wood, wood stain, paint, 14 ¾ x 8 ¼ x 2 ¾ inches (37.5 × 21 × 7 cm). The Cartin Collection. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Charles, 1995. Fabric, thread, metal, plastic, paint, 19 × 14 × 4 ½ inches (48.3 × 35.6 × 11.4 cm). Collection of Barbara and Leonard Kaban. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Charly/Chas, 1999–2002. Fabric, thread, embroidery floss, leather, metal, metal patina, gold plating, screws, plastic, fiber glass, epoxy resin, epoxy dye, elastic, masking tape, wood, pencil lead, cardboard, paper, ink, 29 × 14 × 9 inches (73.7 × 35.6 × 22.5 cm). Collection of Eileen and Michael Cohen, New York. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Come Together, 1995–1996. Fabric, thread, embroidery floss, steel, 34 1/2 × 26 × 6 1/2 inches (87.63 × 66.04 × 16.51 cm). Collection San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Purchased through a gift of Kimberly S. Light. Photograph by Ian Reeves
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Cricket Cage, 2002. Human bone, 3 3/8 × 3 3/8 × 1 7/16 inches (8.6 × 8.6 × 3.7 cm). Private collection, United. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Toy Chest, 2005–2006. Wood, wood stain, shellac, decal, cardboard, wire, metal, metal patina, gold-plated chain, screws, nails, wax crayon, paint, ink, epoxy resin, fabric, synthetic fur, leather, vinyl, thread, embroidery floss, ribbon, yarn, string, sisal fiber waxed with paraffin, sawdust, 8 ¼ x 13 × 5 5/8 inches (21 × 33 × 14.3 cm). Collection of Katherine and Keith L. Sachs, Rydal, PA. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Flip Flops, 2006. Foam rubber, epoxy resin, epoxy dye, embroidery floss, steel, 13 ¾ x 7 ½ x 4 5/8 inches (34.9 × 19 × 11.75 cm). Collection John McEnroe. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater

The Installation of workworkworkworkwork
at New York’s Astor Place

Charles Ledray (b. 1960), workworkworkworkwork, 1991 (detail). 588 objects: Fabric, thread, cotton batting, yarn, embroidery floss, nylon cord, carpet, leather, wood, metal, foil, metal chain, wire, nails, porcelain, pumice, beads, buttons, cardboard, corrugated cardboard, paper, magic marker, paint, approximately 45 feet long x 10 in x 2in. (13.7 m x 25.4 cm x 5 cm). Private Collection, Houston, TX
Charles Ledray (b. 1960), workworkworkworkwork, 1991 (detail). 588 objects: Fabric, thread, cotton batting, yarn, embroidery floss, nylon cord, carpet, leather, wood, metal, foil, metal chain, wire, nails, porcelain, pumice, beads, buttons, cardboard, corrugated cardboard, paper, magic marker, paint, approximately 45 feet long x 10 in x 2in. (13.7 m x 25.4 cm x 5 cm). Private Collection, Houston, TX
Charles Ledray (b. 1960), workworkworkworkwork, 1991 (detail). 588 objects: Fabric, thread, cotton batting, yarn, embroidery floss, nylon cord, carpet, leather, wood, metal, foil, metal chain, wire, nails, porcelain, pumice, beads, buttons, cardboard, corrugated cardboard, paper, magic marker, paint, approximately 45 feet long x 10 in x 2in. (13.7 m x 25.4 cm x 5 cm). Private Collection, Houston, TX
Charles Ledray (b. 1960), workworkworkworkwork, 1991 (detail). 588 objects: Fabric, thread, cotton batting, yarn, embroidery floss, nylon cord, carpet, leather, wood, metal, foil, metal chain, wire, nails, porcelain, pumice, beads, buttons, cardboard, corrugated cardboard, paper, magic marker, paint, approximately 45 feet long x 10 in x 2in. (13.7 m x 25.4 cm x 5 cm). Private Collection, Houston, TX
Charles Ledray (b. 1960), workworkworkworkwork, 1991 (detail). 588 objects: Fabric, thread, cotton batting, yarn, embroidery floss, nylon cord, carpet, leather, wood, metal, foil, metal chain, wire, nails, porcelain, pumice, beads, buttons, cardboard, corrugated cardboard, paper, magic marker, paint, approximately 45 feet long x 10 in x 2in. (13.7 m x 25.4 cm x 5 cm). Private Collection, Houston, TX
Charles Ledray (b. 1960), workworkworkworkwork, 1991 (detail). 588 objects: Fabric, thread, cotton batting, yarn, embroidery floss, nylon cord, carpet, leather, wood, metal, foil, metal chain, wire, nails, porcelain, pumice, beads, buttons, cardboard, corrugated cardboard, paper, magic marker, paint, approximately 45 feet long x 10 in x 2in. (13.7 m x 25.4 cm x 5 cm). Private Collection, Houston, TX

These photographs document the original installation of Charles LeDray’s workworkworkworkwork in the summer of 1991. For this installation, nearly six hundred precisely fashioned miniature objects created by the artist were layed out on a sidewalk in the center of New York’s Astor Place. Inspired by the itinerant street vendors that flooded the city’s streets during this era, LeDray created tiny versions of the kinds of secondhand items typically sold in these spontaneous sidewalk exchanges. The objects on display—clothing, housewares, jewelry, magazines, books, and artwork—each evoke a unique, personal backstory regarding their previous owners. The “work” in LeDray’s repetitious title can function as either a noun or verb, reflecting the vast amount of objects, the lengthy and laborious task of creating them, or the basic need to labor in order to survive.