Vernon Fisher: Flaubert's parrot Schrodinger's cat hey look monkeys throwing shit

Vernon Fisher: Flaubert’s parrot Schrodinger’s cat hey look monkeys throwing shit

November 2 – December 14, 2013

The artist’s fascination with representation, illusion, memory, association, and systems of classification is evident in his work, as Fisher often includes diagrams or maps, yet these offer little clarification to the viewer. This is seen within the painting Disposition of Birds, in which the artist includes a seemingly straightforward, numbered diagram representing various species of birds, yet he pairs this chart with pixelated, disjointed images of Daffy Duck and Woody the Woodpecker and other comic birds, thus defying an easy, one-dimensional reading. Mona Monalisa also teases the viewer, as the artist scrawls a simple smiley face across a traditional rendering of a house in black and white imagery, accompanied by renderings of Mr. Hyde and Krusty the Clown.  As the flatness of the graffiti-like smile denies the illusion of depth presented by the scene, it makes a sly reference to the enigmatic grin captured in Leonardo da Vinci’s famous portrait.


Vernon Fisher’s artwork has been featured in numerous museum exhibitions, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C., the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, and two biennials at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (most recently in 2000). Fisher has received multiple fellowships from the National Endowment of the Arts, a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation grant, and a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship.  The artist’s work was featured in a major career retrospective entitled K-Mart Conceptualism at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth in 2010.