201 Hunger Cradle
Hunger Cradle was part of a group exhibition called 3-Legged Race organized by Nari Ward in 1996, with two other artist friends, Janine Antoni and Marcel Odenbach. It took place in the former firehouse that Ward had discovered in 1993 and had been using as a studio and exhibition space. For 3-Legged Race, each artist took over a different floor of the building and created a site-specific work that used the architecture and history of the structure as raw materials. For his contribution, Ward created a kaleidoscopic network of objects, ropes and strings that took over the second floor of the building. The complex web suspends a variety of everyday objects from pieces of furniture to old toys to objects with personal significance to the artist. Every time the work has subsequently been installed, it is adapted to the specific architecture of the exhibition space and Ward adds different objects he finds on the exhibition site and in the surrounding neighborhood. For this presentation, he discovered an old super-8 film projector, a computer printer, and a radiator in the New Museum’s next-door space at 231 bowery. The visual cacophony of the installation reflects the dynamic urban context that Ward has continuously worked in, while at the same time making connections across different historical and geographic locations. Hunger Cradle is also an excellent example of Wards pioneering role in the rise of sculptural installation during the mid-1990s. Along with artist like Thomas Hirschhorn, Sarah Sze, and Jason Rhoades, Ward created a number of dramatic and immersive installations built from relatively quotidian objects.
Audio guide: “Nari Ward: We the People,” New Museum, New York, 2019.