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Seattle Art Museum (SAM)


Photo: James Prinz



Nick Cave

American, born 1961

Artist Nick Cave: "I am interested in the power of cloth, and how much clothes contribute to a part of the vastness, to a particular hierarchy within a particular culture. I might look at a Guro masker in Africa and see how a community can bring vastness to an object, using a lock of hair, trinkets, or things that empower this garment and its function as a spiritual guardian...The end is this highly embellished and extraordinary attire."
Human hair, fabricated fencing mask, sweaters, beads, metal wire
Height: approximately 6 ft., on mannequin
Gift of Vascovitz Family, in honor of the 75th Anniversary of the Seattle Art Museum
Provenance: The artist; [Jack Shainman Gallery, New York]; purchased by Josef Vascovitz, Seattle, Washington, Dec. 11, 2006
Photo: James Prinz
Now on view at the Seattle Art Museum


Exhibition HistoryNew York, New York, Jack Shainman Gallery, Soundsuits, Oct. 13 - Nov. 11, 2006.

Jacksonville, Florida, Museum of Contemporary Art, Second Skins: Sculptural Soundsuits and Tondos by Nick Cave, Jan. 26 - Apr. 7, 2007.

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, Nick Cave: Meet Me at the Center of the Earth, Feb. 10 - May 30, 2011 (San Francisco, California, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Mar. 28 - July 5, 2009; Scottsdale, Arizona, Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, July 30 - Nov. 29, 2009; Los Angeles, California, Fowler Museum at University of California, Los Angeles, Jan. 10 - June 1, 2010; West Palm Beach, Florida, Norton Museum of Art, Oct. 9, 2010 - Jan. 9, 2011; Cincinnati, Ohio, Cincinnati Art Museum, Jan. 21 - Apr. 29, 2012). Text by Dan Cameron, Kate Eilertsen, and Pamela McClusky. No cat. no., pp. 134 - 138, reproduced.

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, Disguise: Masks and Global African Art, June 18 - Sept. 7, 2015 (Los Angeles, California, University of California, Los Angeles, Fowler Museum of Cultural History, Oct. 18, 2015 - Mar. 13, 2016; Brooklyn, New York, Brooklyn Museum, Apr. 29 - Sept. 18, 2016).

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, Lessons from the Institute of Empathy, Mar. 31, 2018 - ongoing.
Published ReferencesIshikawa, Chiyo, ed. A Community of Collectors: 75th Anniversary Gifts to the Seattle Art Museum, Seattle: Seattle Art Museum, 2007, illus. p. 72,73

Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are on the traditional homelands of the Duwamish and the customary territories of the Suquamish and Muckleshoot Peoples. As a cultural and educational institution, we honor our ongoing connection to these communities past, present, and future. We also acknowledge the urban Native peoples from many Nations who call Seattle their home.

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