October 2015

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House of Cars: Focus On Art

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House of Cars: Innovation and the Parking Garage

House of Cars: Press Kit

A terrific array of artwork features the iconic garage form. A number of artists were recommended to the curatorial team as the exhibition was being developed, and we were lucky to 'discover' some others on our own. As a result, the exhibition includes a gallery devoted to the parking garage in art and the popular imagination, within which one will find works from the artists listed here.

Parking structures can be surprisingly photogenic, in how they filter or trap light, reveal texture and geometry, and in how they reflect human activity through their form. Robbert Flick, Carsten Meier, and Igor Mischiyev present a range of photographic responses to the parking garage from intimate studies in space and light, to immersive views of the cityscape and mysterious cinematic scenes. Rita McBride and Mark Shetabi provide contrasting aesthetic perspectives on the ramp and spiral garage forms, respectively, through their two works of sculpture. And a painting by Mark Shetabi and video by Peter Rose offer opposing dreamlike extremes of the garage experience.

Another form of art that we wished to include– given the exciting work that has and continues to be done—was dance. Included in the exhibition is a photograph by JJ Tiziou of Kate Watson-Wallace's CAR*,  performed at the 2007 Philadelphia Live Arts Festival, and a Richard Termine photograph of Noemie Lafrance's Noir, performed as part of the 2004 Whitney Biennial.

*A 30 minute video of Kate Watson-Wallace's CAR will be screened as part of the Museum's February film series.

AR77159-19, from the Arena Series, 1977
Photo © Robbert Flick, Robert Mann Gallery



Born 1939 in Amersfoort, the Netherlands
MFA, University of California, Los Angeles, California
Professor of Fine Arts, University of Southern California

For more information on this artist, visit:
Robert Mann Gallery
Rose Gallery
Robbert Flick, Trajectories (2004), Catalogue






Side by Side, 2004
Nickel silver sculpture, Private Collection





Born 1960 in Des Moines, Iowa
MFA, California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, California
Currently lives and works in Dusseldorf, Germany


For more information on this artist, visit:
Rita McBride's website





Born 1971 in Braunschweig, Germany
MFA, Ohio University, Athens, Ohio
Assistant Professor, University of Miami, Miami, Florida

For more information on this artist, visit:
Carsten Meier's website
Carsten Meier: Public Parking (2005), Monograph




Born 1960 in Moscow, Emigrated to Israel in 1973
Diploma, School of the Arts, Berlin
Currently lives and works in Berlin, Germany

For more information on this artist, visit:
Galeria Javier Lopez
Multi Story Car Park (2002), Catalogue



Born 1947 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
BA, Mathematics, City College of New York
Professor, The University of the Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

For more information on this artist, visit:
Peter Rose's website
Odysseus in Ithaca (2006), Video




Born 1970 in Mineola, New York
MFA, Pennsylvania Academy of Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Currently lives and works in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

For more information on this artist, visit:
Jeff Bailey Gallery

CAR, 2007

For more information, visit:
Philadelphia Live Arts Festival coverage
Pew Charitable Trust video profile of Kate Watson-Wallace and CAR (2007), Video


Noir, 2004

For more information, visit:
Noemie Lafrance's website



On the subject of parking and photography, a significant historical work would be Edward Ruscha's Thirtyfour Parking Lots (1967) which has since been cited and expanded upon by other artists through the use of GoogleEarth. Additional contemporary photographic views can be seen in Rachel Feierman's anthropological studies of youth in empty parking lots, Branislav Kropilak's colorful and clinical underground garage images, and Alan Thomas's exploration of the unexpected in Chicago's generic garages.

Follow the links below to visit the websites of these artists:

Thirtyfour Parking Lots in Los Angeles (1967) …a "reiterated, scathing critique of Los Angeles urban design and its bondage to the automobile." -- Richard Kostelanetz

See also Contemporary responses to Ruscha's work