A visitor looks at a work by US artist Mike Kelley "Kandors full set 2005-2009" on show during the opening of the Punta della Dogana in Venice on June 3, 2009.
"Kandors"? It can't be. I mean, it sort of looks like it, but do they actually mean that Kandor?
Yes. Yes ,they do.
Mike Kelley’s synaesthetic Gesamtkunstwerk updates earlier holistic Utopias of harmony and universal communication – from the early-20th-century experiments of Russian composer Alexander Scriabin to the multimedia design environments of the 1960s – by introducing another key 20th-century myth of reconciliation and salvation: Superman. The title of the show, ‘Kandors’, references the eponymous city on Superman’s home planet of Krypton that was saved in miniature form under a bell jar by the superhero and transferred to his ‘Fortress of Solitude’ after an evil alien had shrunk Kandor and its inhabitants to the size of a toy. This transportable city-in-a-bottle is emblematic of Superman’s traumatic childhood and symbolic of the double loss he suffered of both his parents and his homeland.Very interesting, beautiful and surprising to find.
The 2009 Venice Biennale [boston.com/bigpicture]
Mike Kelley [Frieze Magazine]