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The Renaissance Society presents Suicide Narcissus

The Renaissance Society at The University of Chicago presents Suicide Narcissus on view through December 15, 2013.

Daniel Steegman Mangrané, 16mm, 2009–2011. 16mm film, color, synchronized 5.1 digital sound, 5:26 minutes.
Daniel Steegman Mangrané, 16mm, 2009–2011. 16mm film, color, synchronized 5.1 digital sound, 5:26 minutes.

Maybe the Mayans weren’t referring to an event but a mindset. Although the world did not end in 2012, climate change has forced us to think about our fate as a species, to confront the thought of our extinction wondering if we are an exception. Clearly, the grand evolutionary scheme of things tells us no. Human history relative to natural history amounts to a mere speck in time. The earth was here long before us, and it will be here long after us. Over the 3.5 billion years of life on earth, countless species have come and gone.

While this is a humbling thought, as the planet’s dominant species, we are less defined by our humility and more by our chauvinism. The will to survive has become the right to survive, a right whose abuse has made startlingly clear the fragile parameters governing terrestrial life. Our ecological crisis taints all facets of our relationship to nature such that culture and our quest for knowledge can only be juxtaposed against reflections on folly, catastrophe and death. Featuring eight artists, Suicide Narcissus is a group exhibition meant to serve as a contemporary vanitas.

Artists: Thomas Baumann, Haris Epaminonda & Daniel Gustav Cramer, Katie Paterson, Nicole Six & Paul Petritsch, Lucy Skaer, and Daniel Steegmann Mangrané

Founded in 1915, the Renaissance Society is a non-collecting museum of contemporary art committed to supporting artists through exhibitions, the commissioning of new work, and the production of criticism in publications and interdisciplinary education programs. All programs are admission-free and open to the public.

The Renaissance Society is located on the campus of the University of Chicago, in Cobb Hall, on the fourth floor. It is open Tuesday to Friday from 10am to 5pm, and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5pm. Admission is free. Visit to learn more about the exhibitions and events.

The Renaissance Society
5811 South Ellis Avenue
Chicago IL 60637
Hours: Tuesday–Friday 10am–5pm;
Saturday–Sunday noon–5pm