Where Walls Float and Hearts Are Garbage: Felix Burrichter’s BLOW UP

Part 1960s Antonioni, part Ibsen tragedy, and part sex-doll dreamscape, “Blow Up,” a recent exhibition at New York’s Friedman Benda curated by Felix Burrichter, is an exercise in “the aesthetics and materiality of scale, and how the objects we’re surrounded with during our childhood condition our ideas of domesticity, taste, and social norms today.” Marcella Zimmermann considers Burrichter’s Freudian trip through a 1:1 dollhouse, shot by Lyndsy Welgos.

Felix Burrichter inherited his sister’s dollhouse when he was four years old. It was 1982 and little boys weren’t supposed to play with dolls, but the hand-me-down toy inspired a lifelong fascination with spatial identity— what is this room for? Why is it done like this? Why does it make me feel this way? And what does it do for you?

A few decades later, Felix is now an editor and curator of ‘architectural entertainment,’ the clever tagline for his magazine, PIN-UP. In “Blow Up,” a group show he curated at the New York art and design gallery Friedman Benda, Burrichter reimagines his traditional childhood dollhouse as the life-size home of a wealthy and strange gay intellectual. In this macabre dream world, walls float, hearts are garbage, cribs spin, and there are toilets in the dining room. Though odd, the mish-mash of curious objects evokes a powerful sense of nostalgia for a place or time that never existed. The pink comforter in the bedroom makes me ache for happy adolescence; the kitchen reminds me of home-cooked meals I never tasted.

Throughout the exhibition, which was designed by Adam Charlap Hyman (of Charlap Hyman & Herrero), Burrichter places works by the new guard of the Hip-Ugly, including Katie Stout, Misha Kahn, and Telfar Clemens, alongside masterpieces by the original gangsters of the genre: Gaetano Pesce, Camille Henrot, and Shiro Kuramata. Each room of the house looks normal at first, but when examined, the dangly paper architecture gives way to boozy dark humor and a dizzying sense of instability. As a whole, the exhibition could be a sardonic set design: one-part Museum of Ice Cream and one part hell – a beautiful hell for only the witty, self-deprecating misfits to enjoy. I did.

Related Content

  • From Rags to Rags: RICK OWENS Inside Out

    At Paris Fashion Week 2018, Rick Owens's self-possessed muses and flaming pyre created a dark counterforce on a day of reactionary triumph in Washington DC. Originally published in 032c Issue 19, Carson Chan interviews RICK OWENS at his home, studio and gym – and discovers how the American in Paris has managed to create a "total aesthetic."More
  • Deeper

  • John Roberts Asks, CAN THOUGHT EXIST WITHOUT THE BODY?

    What are the best non-physical landfills for discarded thought? Do waves transition between naturally occurring substrates and audio signals? Does adrenal fatigue and replenishment in the human brain relate to cycles of euphoria and dysphoria in music? What is the mental effect of visual versus aural repetition? Is all music fictional? Can the language of objects and memories impregnate sound? Are bodies out of fashion? What is the music production equivalent to a green screen in film? What is the best non-physical preservation method for sound? Is film editing a way of ordering memories? Is repetition therapeutic? Are all films fictional? Have physical forms slipped into obsolescence? Did Erik Satie have an anxiety disorder? Is background music parasympathetic? Are physical players more virtuosic than virtual instruments? Is thought finite? Is physical music a fetish? Is reality fictional? What is the most elegant way to float between corporeal and ethereal forms? Do memories deteriorate and fade like audio signals exposed to the elements?More
  • 032c Cosmic Workshop Collection

    032c COSMIC WORKSHOP 'Omen' Hoodie

    €120
    Buy Now
  • Dev Hynes Collaborates with OAMC and Adidas on a Capsule Collection

    Under the music moniker Blood Orange, Devonté Hynes has spent the last decade softening the strident ego of mainstream pop with the wistful jazz and new wave tones, as well as musings on identity, belonging, and vulnerability, on albums such as Cupid Deluxe or Negro Swan. Singer, songwriter, producer, and director Hynes, who goes by Dev, brings his solitary sensibility to his other projects, too – whether scoring films and fashion shows, collaboration with visual artists, or, more recently, starring as the face of a capsule collaboration between adidas and OAMC, a menswear label founded by Luke Meier and Arnaud Faeh in 2013.More
  • 032c Cosmic Workshop Collection

    032c COSMIC WORKSHOP 'Morning' Triangle Puffer Scarf

    €80
  • New Arrivals

    Buffalo by 032c Jodhpur Ankle Boot White

    €450
    Buy Now