Featured Artists: BIANCA SFORNI, RON GORCHOV, JAMES HYDE, AGA OUSSEINOV
Christopher Henry Gallery presents 1911, a group show dedicated to the centennial anniversary of the August 21, 1911 theft of the Mona Lisa. At first it was thought the theft might have as much to do with art as crime: Pablo Picasso was accused and the poet Guillaume Apollinaire was jailed for a week. As it turned out it was a worker at The Louvre, Vincenzo Peruggia, seeking to repatriate the masterpiece to Italy, who had perpetrated the greatest art theft of the 20th century. After two years Peruggia returned the painting unharmed to The Louvre.
What if the Mona Lisa had never been recovered? Would Marcel Duchamp have defaced (or refaced) the Mona Lisa in 1919 by drawing a moustache on a postcard reproduction of the painting? These two events involving the Mona Lisa produce wildly different consequences and narratives.
The works presented in “1911” are intended to commemorate the theft which took place a century ago and its historical resonances. Through painting, photography and sculpture the featured artists explore the meaning and experience of the art object as original icon, but also narratives of loss and longing.