How Elastic Is The Human Body?
On a recent trip to New York, I visited the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). There I wandered the Museum’s various galleries of permanent collections, and exhibitions, covering paintings, sculptures, drawings, photography, architecture, design, and media. In a series of posts about my MoMA visit, I will feature some of the pieces that resonated most with me. First up is this installation by Senga Nengudi.
R.S.V.P. I – 1977
Pantyhose and sand
American, born 1943
Acquired by the MoMA in 2011, R.S.V.P. I was included in Senga Nengudi’s breakthrough exhibition at Just Above Midtown Gallery in 1977. It is made of dark-hued panty hose that have been pulled, knotted, and filled with sand to create bulging, pendulous sacks and tautly outstretched limblike forms. “I am working with nylon mesh because it relates to the elasticity of the human body,” Nengudi has explained. “From tender, tight beginnings to sagging… The body can only stand so much push and pull until it gives way, never to resume its original shape.” – MoMA caption