Modern artist Jeremy Deller's chosen medium appears to be our collective consciousness. Deller creates moments in which our attention is jointly focused on the same thing -- or maybe he takes advantage of those moments when we're collectively focused on the same thing -- and then harnesses the spirit and camaraderie of that moment into something lasting. In other words, he fixes the ephemeral. Joy in People
, the new exhibit at Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (3750 Washington Boulevard; 314-535-4660 or www.camstl.org
), is a mid-career survey of Deller's finest fixed moments, such as Valerie's Snack Bar
. This working replica of an English cafe was made to be a float in a parade organized by Deller; now it's an installation that serves tea and snacks, mimicking the very thing that inspired it. A video of the actual parade complements Valerie's Snack Bar
, fixing the magic moment here in St. Louis rather than London -- at least for a little while. Joy in People
opens with a free public reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, February 1, and you should come -- Deller's art requires a crowd to really come alive. The work remains on display through Sunday, April 28, and the museum is open Wednesday through Sunday.
Wednesdays-Sundays. Starts: Feb. 1. Continues through April 28, 2013