Dirty Deeds (re)Done Dirt Cheap
David Dempewolf, Justin Matherly, Scott Rigby, and Leigh Stevens will create an installation in the Morris Gallery conceiving the Pensylvania Academy’s Museum as sideshow, themepark, and historical landmark. Their project, Dirty Deeds (re)Done Dirt Cheap, is a site specific commentary on the dual role museums play as both repositories of venerable art and as sites of Disney-inspired entertainment.
Basing their sideshow on the theme of the Pennsylvania Academy’s legends & tall tales, the artists reconcile the educational mandate of the musem with the requirement that museums must cater to ever broader audiences. The installation will also underscore how modern day museum practices which conflate high and low culture—artistic edification & mass entertainment—have their roots not only in Disney, but in the nineteenth century popular culture, including the Peale Museums & P.T.Barnum.
Associate Curator, Pafa Museum