by Susan Hensel
January 7-February 24, 2006
OPENING RECEPTION :
Saturday, JANUARY 7, 2006, 5-9 pm
Three years in the making, Desire, is the first Minneapolis show by Susan Hensel. Desire is an installation. When you visit the gallery you will walk into a total environment devoted to the journey from adolescence to senescence, from sexual awakening to fecundity, relationship, sorrow, aging, and beauty. It is a lushly beautiful space, replete with color, sound, lights all focused on allowing you to experience the theme. You will be invited to enter an inner sanctum that fractures the separation between public and private. Quiet, meditative, warm, and inviting for the dark days of winter.
The piece began developing about three years ago before Susan moved to Minnesota. She had just finished a mammoth installation, entitled Kristallnacht: the bystanders, about the concept of the holocaust, about the ways in which we humans can kill and maim members of our own species, and how we good people could stand by and not act. Susan has said that she was wounded and exhausted by the work that went into that piece. Years of living in the study and knowledge of death and destruction, of human evil, had taken its toll.
It took about six months for the usually ebullient Hensel to feel normal again. She asked herself, “What should I do next? What frontier did I have left to explore? What was the opposite of death and destruction? I determined to investigate sexuality and aging.” As the arc of the project proceeded, she found she was creating a quasi-historical, many-layered narrative of sexual awakening, fecundity, relationship, sorrow, and aging. Using drawing, photography, printing, collage, assemblage, light, and sound, Hensel creates a beautiful, problematic environment that ultimately engages the existential question of how we manage to live alone in the prison of our bodies.
A catalog of the DESIRE show is available for $15 MORE…