Recently, Chloe Wise debuted her solo exhibit “Full Sized Body, Erotic Literature” at the Retrospective Gallery in Hudson, NY. The Canadian-born, New York-based Wise has produced yet another larger than life body of work. You may recall Wise’s faux designer bread bags that created quite the buzz in both the art and fashion world when model India Menuez wore it to a Chanel dinner. The artist is now making her way into the New York gallery scene by way of the Hudson, where the vibe is quirky and a little off the beaten path.
Full Sized Body, Erotic Literature is a continuation of Wise’s satirical commentary. Wise’s Jewish, female, millennial viewpoint is utilized to provoke viewers to question their consumptive habits. Her pieces explore the notion of our precious illicit activities, and bring the blurred lines between fantasy and reality to our attention with distinction. Wise has boiled down these concepts to two things: gastronomical and sexual guilty pleasures, Sex and Chinese food. This girl has Chutzpa!
Wise’s paintings, sculptures, and videos eloquently observe our conscious and unconscious in tandem. The oil-painted urethane sculpture “Complaint” displays a Chinese take out container spilling its contents with a shrimp wearing an engagement ring. Here she explores the consumption of a prohibited item for observant Jews, shellfish. The Chinese food takeout box has an aesthetic kosher-ness in a similar way to Wise’s Challah Chanel bag or her Star of David Made of Bacon.
This item is unconsciously associated with Judaism and Jewish culture by many, yet it has nothing to do with the religion. If anything, the act of eating this goes against Jewish law. These pieces are the taut relationship between our fixation on gastronomic and sexual pleasure … (probably) MSG filled sauce on the Chinese food drips out of the box screaming, “Lick me!”.
The video “Message Me,” along with her oil-on canvas faux dating ads, identify what we are being reduced to, “likes to give oral sex, playing sports”. Do these simple tag lines define us? We are presenting these highly sexualized images of ourselves to get the love and commitment we want, giving anonymous other the keys to choose us. Yet more often than not, what we are “consuming”, whether it be sexual fantasy or Chinese take out, doesn’t even resemble what exists in real life. As Chloe points out, we know certain things are bad for us, but figure out a way to justify habits in search of pleasure and convenience.
Wise recently was included in Gagosian and Deitch’s much talked about exhibition “Unrealism” down in Miami, and is undoubtedly cooking something up for the near future.
“Full Sized Body, Erotic Literature” is on view at the Retrospective Gallery in Hudson, NY until December 20th.
All Images © Chloe Wise and Retrospective Gallery