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Mobile-Homestead
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SMMoA presents A Collection of Ideas… The Mobile Homestead Project: A Conversation with Mary Clare Stevens, Jim Shaw, and Cary Loren

Tuesday, September 17, 7:30 - 9:30 pm

Release Date: August 15, 2013

SANTA MONICA, CA—The Santa Monica Museum of Art is pleased to present The Mobile Homestead Project: A Conversation with Mary Clare Stevens, Jim Shaw, and Cary Loren on Tuesday, September 17 from 7:30 to 9:30 pm—this conversation is part of SMMoA’s groundbreaking series A Collection of Ideas. Mary Clare Stevens, executive director of the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts, joins artists and Destroy All Monsters bandmates Jim Shaw and Cary Loren to discuss their roles in Mike Kelley’s Mobile Homestead project and its collision of public art, subcultural activity, and independent art practice.


Mobile Homestead is a full-scale replica of Kelley’s suburban childhood home built on a lot behind the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit. The structure features a detachable mobile façade designed to provide social services on the fly, a ground floor that functions as a community gallery, and a labyrinthine basement that is not open to the public and reserved for what Kelley described as “private rites of an aesthetic nature.” The mobile façade’s voyage from downtown Detroit to the artist’s original home in the suburbs was recorded in Kelley’s final video works; Stevens will share excerpts from the videos and additional documentation of Mobile Homestead to contextualize the project and deepen the conversation.


Mike Kelley wrote of the Homestead: “This project blatantly makes a distinction between public art and private art, between the notions that art functions for the social good, and that art addresses personal desires and pleasure. Mobile Homestead does both; it is simultaneously geared toward community service and anti-social private sub-cultural activities. It has a public side, and a secret side.”


The Mobile Homestead Project: A Conversation with Mary Clare Stevens, Jim Shaw, and Cary Loren presents the opportunity to reflect on this complex artwork, which offers many different services and meanings for Detroit’s diverse publics and the art world at large. Mobile Homestead, planned and designed by Kelley, was commissioned by the London-based arts organization Artangel in association with MOCAD, the LUMA Foundation, and the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts.


Mary Clare Stevens worked as Mike Kelley's studio manager for 10 years and now serves as a Trustee of the Estate and Executive Director of the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts, a non-profit that Kelley set up in 2008. Stevens is an artist with an MFA from UCLA.


Cary Loren is a filmmaker, writer and bookseller from Detroit, Michigan. He was a founding member of Destroy All Monsters with Jim Shaw, Mike Kelley, and Niagara.


Jim Shaw is an artist and musician from Midland, Michigan. He was a founding member of Destroy All Monsters with Cary Loren, Mike Kelley, and Niagara. Shaw lives and works in Los Angeles and earned his MFA from the California Institute of the Arts. 


The event is free and open to the public. Seating is limited. Please RSVP at smmoa.org/programs-and-exhibitions/the-mobile-homestead-project/


A Collection of Ideas… is a series of conversations with some of today’s most innovative and creative minds to examine the important social, cultural, and political issues of our time.


Image caption: Mobile Homestead parked in front of the original Kelley home on Palmer Road, Westland, Michigan, 2010, Photograph by Corine Vermuelen, Courtesy of MOCAD


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For further information about the exhibition or to schedule interviews, please contact Lynda Dorf, 424.645.4620 or lynda.dorf@smmoa.org.