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Indianapolis Museum of Art Opens Brian McCutcheon Out of this World

The Indianapolis Museum of Art presents Brian McCutcheon: Out of this World, exhibition on view September 9, 2011-March 4, 2012.

The solo exhibition Brian McCutcheon: Out of this World features a new body of work by Indianapolis-based conceptual artist Brian McCutcheon. For the exhibition, McCutcheon uses video, photography, and sculpture to explore the relationships between play, masculinity, and the notion of flight. After realizing that his son is currently the same age that he was during the 1969 Apollo 11 moon landing, McCutcheon chose to investigate the duality of father and son relationships through imagery and footage related to space exploration.

Brian McCutcheon, Lounge, 2011. From the series Alien Landscape, cibachrome prints on paper, 40×50 in. each. Commissioned by the Indianapolis Museum of Art; Courtesy of the Artist.

Visitors will encounter the first work of the exhibition upon entering the IMA’s Pulliam Great Hall, where the base of a currently untitled “flight path” sculpture will be sited. Consisting of a curvilinear metal track, the sculpture traces the imagined trajectory of a toy rocket. With the “launch pad” on the IMA’s second floor, the sculpture will extend three stories before “landing” in the McCormack Forefront Galleries. Within the galleries, Out of this World continues to evolve in a way that mimics a children’s book narrative, including the launch, space travel, and lunar landing, before arriving at the theme of the splash down—the return to reality at the conclusion of the exhibition. For McCutcheon, historical space exploration continues to represent an extreme form of human imagination and will—and an extraordinary leap of risk and faith. McCutcheon’s whimsical commissions for this exhibition reflect on how the objects that we associate with these events are peculiarly modern yet nostalgic, highly technological yet fantastical.

McCutcheon’s past work has focused on the intersection of masculinity, consumerism and suburban iconography. For example, McCutcheon’s Stud (2001) and Trailer Queen II (2003) are sculptural objects that fuse the customized paint jobs typically adapted for muscle cars and applies them to common objects like Weber grills, creating familiar, but unexpected works that bring together the culture of hot rodding and suburban barbeques.

Brian McCutcheon (b. 1965, Traverse City, Michigan) has been the recipient of numerous artist grants, awards, and residencies; most recently a 2010–11 Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant and a summer 2009 residency at Sculpture Space in Utica, NY. McCutcheon taught at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and currently teaches at the Herron School of Art and Design (Indianapolis). Over the past decade, his work has been featured in a wide range of exhibitions on a national and international scale. McCutcheon is a co-founder and partner of Indianapolis Fabrications (iFab), a custom fabrication studio. He received an MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art after earning a BFA from Colorado State University.

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