If you have walked through Raw/Cooked: Kristof Wickman then you have probably noticed the abundance of cast pumpkins. As the Coordinator for Raw/Cooked, I had the pleasure of working closely with the artist on the exhibition and when all was said and done, one questioned remained. I thought I’d ask Kristof, as I sure others are wondering about too: What’s the deal with the pumpkins?
The answer, I’ll admit, was not one I was expecting—here’s what Kristof had to say:
There’s a lot I find interesting about pumpkins. Firstly, they’re thought to be native to North America. They are in my mind the classic harvest vegetable, signaling the final period of summer, maturing right before everything else dies. I imagine their volume to weight ratio is similar to that of human body parts. They have a satisfying weight and they’re also anthropomorphic in shape. The stem can appear like an odd phallus and the underside like an anus, not to mention the bulbous stomach or breast-like form of the pumpkin body itself. Whatever it is, there’s a robust fullness to pumpkins that I like. There’s also strong connection to the supernatural and American folklore, which goes back to the Native Americans.
Tessa Hite is the Project Coordinator for Raw/Cooked, a series of five consecutive exhibitions, featuring under-the-radar Brooklyn Artists. Tessa joined the Contemporary Department in June, before which she was the Curatorial Assistant in the Exhibitions Division since 2008. She received a BA from the University of Pennsylvania.