Exhibitions: Unfolding Tales: Selections from the Contemporary Collection

Nick Cave: Soundsuit

Nick Cave’s Soundsuit transforms the human body into an ornate still life. Since the early 1990s, Cave has been fabricating such inventive sculptures out of scavenged materials that he often overlays with beadwork, stitching, and other sorts of embellishments. One of his first Soundsuits, crafted from twigs, was made to be worn. In response to the movements of the wearer, it generated rustling sounds, giving a name to the resulting body of Cave’s work. The Soundsuits, which allow the wearers to assume new identities, allude to a range of rituals, from ceremonial African dances to Christian liturgy. Reflecting his training as a dancer, Cave’s creations explore the expressive potential of the body moving through space and as a support on which to compose with readymade materials.