THE ASTOUNDING PROBLEM OF ANDREW NOVICK
JANUARY 28 - APRIL 26, 2009
The Astounding Problem of Andrew Novick features the overwhelming and unusual collections of an eccentric individual who does not consider himself an artist. In total, Andrew Novick estimates he has over a hundred collections: Barbie dolls of every variety, Chihuahua figurines, clown paintings, anything related to teeth or braces. The truth is he has far more things than will or can ever be organized into a “collection.” Inside his home and in his rented storage space he has stacks, piles and boxes of answering machine cassette tapes full of incoming phone messages, more answering machine cassette tapes with recordings of recording almost every conversation he has ever had with a telemarketer, jars ripe with formaldehyde-free dead animals, uncommon foods and more.
Andrew Novick’s ambiguous status as a collector/artist/hoarder is not just about his unique personality. It tells us something about our time. He is a product of the DIY generation and indie culture. This generation believes a creative life is passion and entertainment; something you share with your friends over beers, not necessarily your profession. Though he would never put it this way, he is a legacy of the 1960s belief that “everyone is an artist.” His pursuits are an outgrowth of the diffusion of the definition of artist over the last 40 years.
Finally -- crucially -- he is also a consumer, a wholly modern person, who buys and stores shit just like the rest of us. The astounding problem of Andrew Novick is not his problem. It is ours.
A SELECTION OF ANDREW'S STUFF
The Bob Newhart Ticket Stub 2003
Jar of Cereal Dust - 10 Years of "Work"
Chihuahua Cookie Jar
Clown Sake Set
Li'l Fawn - Plush
Chihuahua Drawing (Print)
Chihuahua Munny by Dea
Mr. Mouthy Mouth
Huge Stack of Games
Goose Head in Jar
Manequin Head with Braces
Glittery Orange Marshmallow Fish Bait
Red Fawn Statue
Wood Meat Ball Mold
Porcelain Coffee Pot
Fawn Salt&Pepper Shakers
FIND OUT MORE...
» video tour of exhibition with Andrew Novick
» view photo album of (lots of but not all of) Andrew's stuff
» view photo album of opening night
» audio clips from telemarketer conversations 1 2 3 4 5
» see a list of all of Andrew's stuff
» press coverage of the exhibition
» contact Andrew
send Andrew your email address for updates on his collections
The Astounding Problem of Andrew Novick is co-curated by Michelle Baldwin and Adam Lerner.
Photos on this page courtesy of Tod Kapke, tkopix.com