Adults Only

Marketing to kids is a waste of excellent 'Almost Warm and Fuzzy'

If you're looking for unadulterated childhood joy, the exhibit does happen to offer up a few selections, such as Charles Ray's Fire Truck. Ray takes a common, plastic red fire engine and re-creates it on a grand scale, close to 20 feet long. It's every child's wish come true, in all its plastic-entrenched majesty. Sandy Skoglund's Shimmering Madness is pure beauty, showing two life-size child figures, made entirely of jellybeans, dancing together. The museum says the artist and her sister spent countless hours making sure that no jellybean would be placed against any of the same color. And behind the dancing figures, Skoglund has created a vast wall of brightly painted butterflies that move and flutter in random succession.

Priss by Kim Dingle.
Priss by Kim Dingle.
Two jellybean children dance in one of the few pieces kids will appreciate.
Two jellybean children dance in one of the few pieces kids will appreciate.


Continues through January 14. Call 480-994-2787.
Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, 7380 East Second Street, Scottsdale.

"Almost Warm and Fuzzy" is almost a brilliant art show, but it's held back by the silly marketing that implies that contemporary art can only be stomached when it makes the whole family feel happy and warm all over. Seventy-five thousand children viewing the Egypt show at Phoenix Art Museum several years back made it clear that the best antidote for falling attendance figures -- a current problem at the Scottsdale Museum -- is to bring on the kiddies in droves, or, should we say, school busloads. Too bad the art also must be relegated to such a low common denominator in the process.

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