Matthew Barney Takes Manhattan

The Financial Times interviewed Matthew Barney as he prepares for his first show in New York in five years. The writer seemed pretty impressed with the “vaguely chemical smell” of Long Island City and the “jaw-dropping view of Manhattan’s gleaming towers” from Mr. Barney’s studio there. As it turns out, the artist is not so easy to please. Here’s Mr. Barney on the Big Island:

“I don’t go to Manhattan any more, not that anything’s going on in Manhattan…I commute between Queens and Brooklyn by going under Manhattan.”

Yes, Mr. Barney, you and every recent graduate NYU.

Borough snobbery aside, we can’t wait for Mr. Barney’s upcoming show of sculpture and drawings at Gladstone Gallery on September 17. The exhibition is drawn from the first two acts of the artist’s Ancient Evenings, which is inspired by Norman Mailer’s 1983 novel of the same name. It refigures the myth of Osiris and Isis as a narrative about the fall of the American car industry, set mostly in Detroit and Los Angeles. The article mentions one of the objects in the show will be a “bronze cast of the underside of a 1967 Chevy Imperial, replete with canopic urns.”

Presumably, Mr. Barney will have to go into Manhattan for the installation.

Matthew Barney Takes Manhattan