10 Oct 2019

Jill Mulleady: Fight-or-Flight

Swiss Institute

Reviewed by Suzanne Unrein

A Fantasy of Transcendence and a Preoccupation with Downfall and Ruin (2019) is the tour-de-force in Jill Mulleady's exhibition at Swiss Institute. Elements inspired by Bruegel's The Land of Cockaigne surround an artificially intelligent colossus, reclining in a dystopian landscape afloat in a horizonless sea lit by an acidic sky. A bald eagle rides on the body of a headless seagull as a forlorn pig stares out from behind an industrial gate. Dead fish lie belly up, a vulvic cave hovers over an old man and his pet pig, and a desolate, orange-eyed bird appears like a mute oracle. Everything is half-dead or in crisis, except for the tablet that sings with bright pop-up charts and floating numbers.

Other works draw inspiration from the space's origin as a bank and add to the alarm, depicting an industrial pipeline with a deranged mouse, and a mysterious vault in the back of a dark room. Upstairs, four woodcuts portray a crazed rat riding a pair of terrorized horses across an apocalyptic cityscape, reminding the viewer of time's passing and erasures.

Exhibition Jill Mulleady: Fight-or-Flight link
Start date 25 Sep 2019
End date 29 Dec 2019 (in 16 days)
Presenter Swiss Institute link
Venue 38 St. Marks Place, New York City, NY, USA map
Image Jill Mulleady, A Fantasy of Transcendence and a Preoccupation with Downfall and Ruin, 2019, oil on linen, 138 x 177 inches, courtesy of Swiss Institute
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