Yuji Agematsu Finds A Cancer Cure in Cellophane

THE DAILY PIC: At the New Museum, Yuji Agematsu puts art where cigarettes normally go.

THE DAILY PIC (#1603): If it’s hard to make out the subject of today’s Daily Pic, that’s as it should be: It’s just as hard to make out these works in real life, as they sit by the dozen on narrow shelves in “The Keeper,” a group show now at the New Museum in New York.

The artist Yuji Agematsu spent a year walking the streets of New York, his head down to spot tiny scraps of attractive trash. Every day, he would turn his very choicest finds into a pocket-size assemblage, presented in the cellophane wrapper from a cigarette box. The New Museum presents 60 out of the 365 that he made in 2014.

The cellophane is what interests me most in his work. I’d never realized how gorgeous it is, and how much that beauty is at odds with the poisonous goods that it wraps. By replacing evil cigarettes with a miniscule work of art, Agemastu seems to be working toward some kind of curative magic. That gesture, repeated day after day, may be more important than the actual works he installs in his cellophane “vitrines.” (Photo by Lucy Hogg)

For a full survey of past Daily Pics visit blakegopnik.com/archive.


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