A compendium of craft masquerading as art, art masquerading as craft, and craft extending its middle finger.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Sale of the Century


Tom Zarrilli looooooves him some yard sales. He has parlayed his yard sale addiction into a fine blog, yardsaleaddict, and a solo exhibition at the Contemporary in Atlanta, A year in the yards of clutter and the driveways of divestment. The website is a must-read for yard sale afficianados. Recently he covered an estate sale that Claire and I attended where the former resident of the house had encrusted all manner of furniture with glitter, Mardi Gras beads, and plastic pearls. The above picture is of a mysterious column from that sale.

The exhibition is fabulous: a cluttered yard sale of a show, featuring stacks upon stacks of Tom's best finds, most featuring pithy labels stating the reason the object is being sold. My favorite item was a model produced by National Geographic where you freeze a plastic caveman into ice. It even came with a bonus sabre-tooth tiger. There is also a carousel of his great yard sale photographs, a cut-rate ancient computer that shows down-home multimedia displays, plenty of naive paintings, a Shrine fez, and an autographed Lester Maddox album. The public is encouraged to root through the exhibition asone might root through a yard sale, uncovering strata of well-intentioned purchases.

I often think about craft project items that I see at garage sales: there's a similar impulse when purchasing craft supplies to the impulse to buy exercise equipment or self-help books. I'm guessing that the accumulated weight of unused craft supplies may break through the Earth's crust in the next decade. On Thursday, June 22nd, Zarrilli will be lecturing about his show, and on June 24th, the public will be allowed to purchase the "installation objects". I'll be conducting a yard sale of my own in Athens, but could somebody pick that Lester Maddox LP up for me? Much obliged.

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