Oozewald

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Cady Noland

1989

Sculpture, 180 x 90 x 73 cm.
Materials: aluminium, nylon, silver cloth

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp / Donated by the Artist (Inv. no. BK5884_M101).

A black-and-white photo of a man being shot, bullet holes and a scarf patterned like the American flag: the images of the assassination of JF Kennedy are so familiar that these elements immediately remind you of this event in 1963. But on closer examination it becomes clear that this is not Kennedy, but Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin. In this work, the assassin himself literally becomes the target. Cady Noland uses a detail from a press photo of Oswald taken a few hours before he himself was murdered by Jack Ruby, the owner of a nightclub, when Oswald was being taken to the prison in Dallas. Cady Noland’s purpose is to refresh our memory. The references are clear, but the message or the conclusion remains obscure. The flag in Oswald’s mouth is like a sort of wad. Is he being silenced? What part did the media play in this story? Cady Noland leaves the answers open and uses her work to convey her questions to the public.

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