Unrestrained Emotions of Meat After Meat Joy

Adam Brandejs, Animatronic Flesh Shoe, 2004. Latex, steel, gear motors, printed circuit, Rio mp3 player, staples, and hair.

The Meat After Meat Joy show at the Daneyal Mahmood Gallery is an extravaganza of blood, sinew, stink, and fat.

Curated by Heide Hatry as a nod to her pig farming childhood, the show forces us to re-examine our relationship to meat, beyond supermarket shrink wrap and styrofoam trays. These fetid works are meant to both intrigue and repel: Yes, meat is morbid, but it is also sensual, political, and absurdly comic. And you only have until next Saturday to see it in the flesh.

During our visit, the gallery owner gleefully recounted the hoohaa surrounding Betty Hirst's American Flag. The controversy was not so much political as it was malodorous. Created expressly for the show's opening, the meat flag was meant to rot in real-time.

As the gallery filled with visitors, the collective body heat accelerated the meat's rate of decay. The resulting stench overwhelmed and only worsened as days passed. Visitors compared it to a punch in the face as neighbors threatened legal action. The flag was finally encased behind glass. This curbed the stink and gave burrowing maggots room to wriggle.

Actively Imagined, Brutally Realized.

A friend described this toilet as looking "like a colonoscopy video capture."

Clockwise from left: Simone Racheli, Water Closet, 2006. Paper and wax. Sheffy Bleier, Testicles (from the Body of Love series), 2002-2005. Carolee Schneeman, Meat Joy, 1964. Raw fish, chicken, sausages, wet paint, plastic, rope, and paper scrap.
From left: David Raymond, 21 Chops, 2003. Acrylic on canvas. Simone Racheli, Water Closet, 2006. Stephen Shanabrook, Heart of Darkness, 1998-2007. Splayed and dried goat carcass, wood, and aluminum.
Betty Hirst, Hommage a Meret Oppenheim, 2008. Bacon, pottery, and spoon.
Betty Hirst, American Flag, 2008. Beef, rotting beef, lard, and larvae.

Daneyal Mahmood Gallery

511 West 25th Street, 3rd Floor, New York 10001 (bn. 10th and 11th Avenues; map) 212-675-2966
Through November 15, 2008. Open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.