Recap: KAWS at Pennyslvania Academy of the Fine Arts
KAWS transformed the walls of PAFA by integrating over 70 paintings and sculptures within the 19th century landmark which is both a museum and academy. Creating a dialogue between traditionalism and contemporary, Kaws placed works accounting for scale, composition and context of the pre-exisiting pieces making a connection between both. Six tondos, sized at 8ft interact with the design set forth by Furness & Hewlitt capture attention from various vantage points within the space. Toying with scale, the presence of Companion, Dissected Accomplice and Chum feel natural within the PAFA vestibule. Sliding doors reveal Gallery 6’s ‘salon’ style experience, a wall composed of 42 varying canvases that reflect its opposition in number accompanied by two ceramic profiles of the artist. A few works were present from prior shows at Honor Fraser and Galerie Perrotin.
In correlation to KAWS in the galleries, the outer facade has a new feature, BORN TO BEND, unveiled at the opening which marks the beginning of an annual series of temporary sculptures on the plinth of the building. The sculpture, KAWS’ iconic character coiled around Gumby will reign above the entrance now through August, 2014.
KAWS at PAFA runs through January 5th, 2014
Photography: Kellen Lee