Mike Kelley

Gagosian Gallery, Beverly Hills

Kandor 18 B (2010), photograph: Fredrik Nilsen

‘Portrait of the Artist as Superhero’

In 2000, Mike Kelley made a film titled Extracurricular Activity Projective Reconstruction #1 (Domestic Scene). It was the first of a series of works that reanimated photographs of carnivalesque performances he found in high school yearbooks such as plays or fancy dress days; he saw them, he said, as ‘rituals of deviance’.[i] Some were simply photographs; others comprised installations, video performances and original music. In 2005, he presented the series in his acclaimed exhibition ‘Day is Done’ at Gagosian Gallery in New York. (Matthew Higgs breathlessly suggested at the time that it was ‘the best show ever’.[ii])

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