Art & Art History
Hello Mr. Soul
400 South Peoria Street, Chicago, IL 60607
John Coplans, Klindt Houlberg, Joe Jachna, Mike Kelly, Sean Landers, Kevin Maginnis, Robert Maplethorpe, Paul McCarthy, Hirsch Pearlman, David Robbins, Allan Roin, and Kevin Wolff.
In his essay for Hello Mr. Soul, curator Tony Tasset describes his own mid-life crisis as “an existential funk; an acute awareness of one’s own insignificance; the big D – disappointment; an emotional emptiness; Peggy Lee’s “Is That All There Is?” But his prognosis for the future is optimistic. “After life beats you up a little, and you experience a universe larger than your own ego, wonderful things begin to happen; an emotional loosening up, a new stop-and-smell-the-roses-attitude. If you have no expectations, life is a gift.”
Hello Mr. Soul was an emotive meditation on the subject of men and aging, as described through the work of twelve male artists. The works were chosen by the curator not as didactic examples of a thesis, but for their evocative and emotional charges. They address issues of aging in a traditional romantic sense, embracing a whole range of feelings: hysterical and stoic, sensitive and crude, loving and mean. The resulting exhibition was a complex environment in which elusive aspects of male desire were revealed.