Demons, Yarns & Tales: Tapestries by Contemporary Artists

Kara Walker: A Warm Summer Evening in 1863 (2008), courtesy of James Cohan Gallery, Banners of Persuasion and Sikkema Jenkins & Co.

Currently on view at James Cohan Gallery in New York City is the exhibition Demons, Yarns & Tales: Tapestries by Contemporary Artists, which runs through February 13, 2010. The show features hand-woven tapestries created by thirteen international artists, most of whom are widely known for their work in other media. Included among the artists whose work is on view are: Kara Walker, Grayson Perry, Shahzia Sikander, Jaime Gili and Peter Blake. The artists were commissioned by the London-based art organization, Banners of Persuasion, to create the tapestries specifically because the medium is so far removed from their usual practices. In the catalog that accompanies the exhibition–which includes an essay written by Sarah Kent–each artist discusses their unique approach to the unfamiliar medium in an interview.

Shahzia Sikander: Pathology of Suspension (2008), courtesy of James Cohan Gallery, Banners of Persuasion and Sikkema Jenkins & Co.

The subjects explored in the tapestries on view range from American race relations, such as is seen in Kara Walker’s A Warm Summer Evening in 1863, to an investigation into the tradition of so-called “craft” or “decorative arts,” as seen in the imagery in Shahzia Sikander’s Pathology of Suspension. Demons, Yarns & Tales: Tapestries by Contemporary Artists at James Cohan marks the exhibition’s first showing in New York; it was previously on view at The Dairy in London and at Design Miami.

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