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John-Paul Stonard

(b Düsseldorf, Feb 19, 1950).

German sculptor. He attended the Staatlichen Kunstakademie Düsseldorf (1975–82), where he studied under Klaus Rinke. From 1979 Mucha made assemblages and constructions from furniture and other objects, creating an oblique, highly personal oeuvre that alludes to industry and travel in contemporary Germany. During the 1980s he created installations, often using furniture found in situ — desks, chairs, lights etc. — that raised questions of ownership and display, and of the autonomy of the museum environment. In 1982 he made Wartesaal (see 1982 exh. cat.), a steel structure holding 242 signs bearing six-letter German station names that could be removed and displayed on a brightly-lit table. The theme of travel, especially of the railway, is central to Mucha’s work. With Wartesaal he constructed an endless imaginary journey that may refer to the spiritual journey of a people during reconstruction. Other major room installations during the 1980s include Das Figur-Grund Problem in der Arkitektur des Barok (für dich allein bleibt nür das grab...


Deborah Cullen

[MoMA] (New York)

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) was founded in 1929 by patrons Lillie P(lummer) Bliss, Cornelius J. Sullivan and Rockefeller family §(1) to establish an institution devoted to modern art. Over the next ten years the Museum moved three times and in 1939 settled in the Early Modern style building (1938–9) designed by Philip S. Goodwin and Edward Durell Stone that it still occupies at 11 West 53 Street. Subsequent renovations and expansions occurred in the 1950s and 1960s by Philip Johnson, in 1984 by Cesar Pelli and in 2002–4 by Yoshirō Taniguchi (b 1937). MoMA QNS, the temporary headquarters during this project, was subsequently used to provide art storage. In 2000, MoMA and the contemporary art space, P.S.1, Long Island City, Queens, announced their affiliation. Recent projects are shown at P.S.1 in Queens in a renovated public school building.

According to founding director, Alfred H(amilton) Barr...


Catherine M. Grant

(b Castle Eden, nr Hartlepool).

English sculptor, installation artist, curator and writer. She studied at Sunderfield Polytechnic between 1980 and 1983 and Goldsmiths’ College, London, between 1984 and 1986. In the early 1990s she used furniture and domestic objects as sculptural materials, reworking them so that they became art objects, as with Shadow Box (1990; see 1997 exh. cat.). Here a padded leather seat, which seems to be a typical gallery bench, is echoed by an abstract wall relief, also in leather; closer inspection reveals that the latter is sewn into squares that could be the interior of the seat, inducing the sensation both of sitting on the installation and of looking at what is normally ignored or unseen in the gallery. For Gold Card (1992; see 1997 exh. cat.) Smith placed gold credit cards bearing the message ‘I wanna be your fantasy’ in various phone booths along Charing Cross Road in London, adjacent to cards advertising the services of prostitutes; the invitation to use the card to buy intimacy linked ‘acceptable’ consumer lust with the taboo sale of the fantasises on display next to them. Smith often created viewing situations that encourage a reassessment of the values represented by everyday objects and scenarios, transforming the ordinary into trophies or mementos that lay bare uncomfortable associations. In the sculpture ...