* Above, the artist at his Manhattan studio, 2001, via Life.
I vividly remember being outraged in the proverbial manner of a philistine exposed to modern art when, for his first solo gallery show in New York, in 1994, Orozco displayed, on the walls of the main room at Marian Goodman, nothing but four Dannon yogurt lids. I recovered, by and by, to take the artist's point, which amounted to disappointment as aesthetic therapy. The transparent, blue-rimmed, date-stamped, price-labelled little items were -- and are, at MOMA -- rather lovely, when contemplated without prejudice. Are they art? No. They are Dannon yogurt lids. The art part is a triggered awareness that the world teems with vernacular loveliness. If you overlook that, it's sad for you.
The NY Times piece on the show, by Deborah Sontag, goes into some of the debate over Orozco's relationship to the Mexican federal government in recent years. The retrospective is up until March 1. Here is the exhibition's intriguing interactive site, as well as a MoMA blog post describing the challenges inherent to the site design.
* Previously, "Gabriel Orozco takes on the desert."