Whitney Biennial 2014

Solo en Inglès

Kids can hear directly from artists as they talk about the thoughts, processes, and ideas behind their work in the 2014 Whitney Biennial.

Joel Otterson

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Narrator: Look up! Can you tell what these chandeliers are made of? Artist Joel Otterson used old goblets or glasses from his own collection to make these. They’re called Bottoms Up, something we say to encourage someone to finish their drink to the very last drop. 

Look at the unusual tent. How is this different from other tents you’ve seen? This one is made of lace and vintage silk from a friend's house. Some of the lace was originally used as curtains. Otterson wanted to create a tent out of beautiful fabrics that would make you think of things other than camping. Peek inside it. Can you see the quilt? Can you imagine what you’d like to do in this tent?

Otterson also collects colorful beads and old-fashioned hand tools which he has strung together to make the colorful curtain on view nearby. Otterson talks about hand-crafting this work:

Joel Otterson: I want control over all of it. What my ten fingers can do, no other ten fingers can do. My hands are amazing.

An installation of a tent in a gallery.

Narrator: Look up! Can you tell what these chandeliers are made of? Artist Joel Otterson used old goblets or glasses from his own collection to make these. They’re called Bottoms Up, something we say to encourage someone to finish their drink to the very last drop. 

Look at the unusual tent. How is this different from other tents you’ve seen? This one is made of lace and vintage silk from a friend's house. Some of the lace was originally used as curtains. Otterson wanted to create a tent out of beautiful fabrics that would make you think of things other than camping. Peek inside it. Can you see the quilt? Can you imagine what you’d like to do in this tent?

Otterson also collects colorful beads and old-fashioned hand tools which he has strung together to make the colorful curtain on view nearby. Otterson talks about hand-crafting this work:

Joel Otterson: I want control over all of it. What my ten fingers can do, no other ten fingers can do. My hands are amazing.


Joel Otterson, Installation view, Camp, 2014. Cotton and polyester lace, silk, copper plumbing pipe and fittings, redwood, aromatic cedar, and bamboo, 68 x 129 x 64 in. (172.7 x 327.7 x 162.6 cm). Collection of the artist; courtesy Maloney Fine Art, Los Angeles