Here comes trouble

By GREG COOK  |  July 18, 2008

Betty Hirst of New York wins the freak-out award for her sculptures made from raw meat. The actual meat was on view at the June 21 opening, but except for a book piece now infested with maggots, visitors must settle for photos. Most striking is Baby, which resembles a life-size baby skinned — and feels like murder.

New Yorker Tamara Kostianovsky’s stuffed animals depicting slaughtered cattle come as a relief. Malice depicts the pink torso of a skinned, gutted cow, with its head and limbs chopped off. Still, it seems cozy, cuddly. Maybe because her sculptures are made of clothing, they get you thinking of bodies as suits we wear. You find yourself pondering that blurry place — blurry because we won’t quite let ourselves look at it — where living bodies become meat. And you wonder about the nature of your soul.

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