FRIENDSWITHYOU
PLAYWORKS: FOREVER & EVER

Bevis_&_Butthead WIDE

 

FriendsWithYou

“Playworks: Forever & Ever”

ON CANAL

359 Canal Street, NYC

November 17 – December 15, 2018

OPENING: Saturday, November 17th from 6-8PM

 

The Hole is proud to present an off-site exhibition by FriendsWithYou entitled Playworks: Forever & Ever. Part of neighborhood arts initiative ON CANAL, the special project will be held at 359 Canal Street at the corner of Wooster. ON CANAL programs art, performance and installation in over twenty Canal Street storefronts; here FriendsWithYou will transform an old empty shop into a serene sculpture garden.

Fourteen new bronze sculptures will debut in Playworks, FriendsWithYou’s first show in New York since their giant project at The Highline and the very first show when The Hole opened on the Bowery in 2011. These new works reimagine the artist duo’s favorite cartoons in this elevated medium, transforming the pop mythology from their childhoods into new classical iconography for the 21st century. The artists have recast soft characters such as Hello Kitty and Gumby, often seen only as pixels or plushies, as eternal bronze sculptures, almost as maquettes for memorials or public statuary.

“As emotional objects, these new sculptures allow us to reimagine our childhood mythology and return us to a joyful, carefree state. The series offers a reflection of our world in its beauty as well as its ugly reality,” said FriendsWithYou.

Playworks reinterprets the iconic characters that have given shape to the language of pop culture, deforming and hybridizing them. These characters speak to viewers in a relatable way, while mixing reality and fantasy with a healthy dose of humor, idiosyncrasy, and fun. This series is an exciting departure from FriendsWithYou’s animation, inflatables, and other sculptures, and reflects their personal journey as it twists and shifts – a metamorphosis of meaning and learning that is cast in these works forever.

 

About FriendsWithYou

FriendsWithYou is the collaborative art project of LA-based artists Samuel Borkson and Arturo Sandoval III, working collectively since 2002 and known for their immersive installations and interactive artworks that inspire world unity through love, joy, and compassion. The duo have gained international recognition with their public exhibitions and artworks in museums, art galleries, and public spaces across the United States and internationally including the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA), Art Basel in Miami Beach, Dallas Contemporary, Galerie Perrotin, The High Line, Oakland Museum of California, The Santa Monica Pier, The Hole, and the Deitch Projects Art Parade. They are the recipients of a National Endowment for the Arts grant to bring Rainbow City to Shreveport, Louisiana, next year. FriendsWithYou recently wrote and developed a whole new universe of characters for their animated Netflix series, True and the Rainbow Kingdom. Currently one of Netflix’s highest-rated preschool shows, the duo created the show as a tool to teach compassion and empathy to millions of people worldwide.

The artists work in a variety of mediums including painting, sculpture, large-scale experiential installations, live performances, and more recently, virtual reality and animation. Incorporating the healing arts, modern rituals, animism, and unified symbols, their works are meant to prompt a wide spectrum of untapped emotions, from playfulness to self-reflection, enabling both personal and shared experiences. Their work reaches from the contemporary art world into popular culture, an exploration in service of people and the world we inhabit. FriendsWithYou’s mission is to cultivate moments of spiritual awareness and powerful, joyous interactions.

 

About ON CANAL, the district for new ideas

ON CANAL is a district for pop-ups where brands, artists, and startups can test out new ideas and engage with the public in a high traffic location at the intersection of SoHo and TriBeCa. The district’s 20+ storefronts are operated by Wallplay Network, an experiential marketplace that programs empty retail spaces with content from pop-up rentals and creative projects. ON CANAL’s program is co-curated by Vibes Studios, with the aim of creatively re-imagining retail. ON CANAL was created by Wallplay and Vibes Studios, in partnership with an alliance of forward-thinking property owners, led by United American Land, LLC. Submit your ideas, visit: www.oncanal.nyc

 

For more information about the artists and to preview works in the exhibition, please email raymond@theholenyc.com.