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Professor John Salvest has three works on exhibition at Memphis Brooks Museum of Art

July 21, 2010 -- Professor John Salvest, Art, recently installed three works of art, "Consumo Ergo Sum," "Smoke Free (2004)," and "Seize the Day (2010)" at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, 934 Poplar Avenue in Overton Park, Memphis. Salvest's exhibition is on view through September 12.

"Consumo Ergo Sum," a United States map created from plastic bottle caps, serves as visual commentary on our consumerist society. Installed in the museum's first floor Kraft Gallery, t
he installation consists of thousands of plastic bottle caps that forA closeup of John Salvest's "Consumo Ergo Sum," on exhibition through Sunday, September 12, at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art in Memphis.m a U.S. map measuring 4 inches by 168 inches by 96 inches. The title of the work, which translates as “I consume, therefore I am,” addresses both the temporality of materialism and our nation’s obsession with mass consumption. "Consumo Ergo Sum" is flanked by two additional works by Salvest, "Smoke Free (2004)," an American flag created from cigarette butts, and "Seize the Day (2010)," a medicine cabinet filled with a mosaic of brightly-hued pain pills. Salvest’s work frequently combines patriotic themes and recycled materials to connote the political and the personal in everyday life. (View the Brooks blog, Beyond the Frame, for more on the exhibition, including photographs of the installation process.)
Marina Pacini, chief curator at the Brooks, states that Salvest “plays with unusual materials but with a very serious purpos"Consumo Ergo Sum," by John Salvest, in its finished state.e. Viewers are always arrested by his visual and verbal puns, which are beautifully crafted, engaging, and thought provoking.”

Born in New Jersey, Salvest has taught sculpture and three-dimensional design at Arkansas State University since 1989. He has twice won National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, as well as a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant. Salvest’s mixed-media objects and installations have been exhibited widely throughout the United States, including solo exhibitions at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, N.Y.; Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis, Mo.; Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, Ariz.; Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock, Ark.; and Morgan Lehman Gallery, New York, N.Y. His work has been reviewed and featured in publications such as Art in America, The New York Times, The Village Voice, Sculpture, Art Papers, and The New Art Examiner. Locally, Salvest completed a public art project for the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts, which was cited as one of the best public art projects in the country by Americans for the Arts Public Art Network’s 2004 Public Art Year in Review.

Previous examples of Salvest’s work have been exhibited at the Brooks, including, most recently, a series of photographs that were included in a May 2010 exhibition of Tunisian mosaics.
The Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is the oldest and largest encyclopedic art museum in the state of Tennessee. For details, call the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art at (901) 544-6200. or visit the museum online ( 

--release courtesy of the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art

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