Purple Diary

[February 22 2009]

Alex Bag’s new installation at The Whitney Museum

Alex Bag’s new installation at The Whitney Museum

For her first solo museum exhibition, The Whitney commissioned a new work by video artist Alex Bag.

The untitled piece is a satirical remake of a 1970’s syndicated children’s television show, The Patchwork Family, which starred Bag’s mother.

In her newer version, Ms. Bag casts herself, as well as friends and unprofessional actors, to appear before a studio audience of real-life children. The video is comprised of new footage in Bag’s DIY style, as well as stock footage from the original show. Alex Bag’s take on her mother’s formerly perky role as hostess adopts a morbid world-view, which she imparts on the unassuming children. Both dark and hysterical, the “show” features new characters; a singer in a wheelchair, a snake handler, a wizard, and a dragon puppet with whom Bag converses, as well as stock characters from previous works including conspiracy theorists, witches, neurochemists, corporate raiders, and suburban housewives. On view January 9 through April 12. Alex Bag is interviewed by Shamim Momin, the curator of the show, in the new Purple Fashion #11.

Photo and text by Rachel Chandler

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