Art That Loves You Back: Ernesto Neto at the Park Avenue Armory.


Drippy nutsacks as far the eye can see. (Photo by C-M.)

We love art. We hold it in high esteem. We write about it. We talk about it. We fix it when it’s broken. But what does art ever do for us? (Besides provide us with something to look at while sipping bad chardonnay.) Well, in the case of Ernesto Neto’s piece at the Park Avenue Armory, in NYC, it loves us back. His sprawling installation — think: mom’s pantyhose gone fantastically amoebic — contains various chambers that embrace you in the most womb-tastic ways.

A small, red-tinted tent (on the right), is filled with a squishy soft floor and lavender pillows. Perfect for midday naps. A testicular-looking chamber towards the back features a giant Barney-purple pillow that engulfs you in a spongy bear hug. And a Chuck E. Cheese-style ball pit, filled plastic spheres, suspends you above the ground, while providing needed acupressure. (It’s incredibly restful, provided you’re willing to fight off the three-year-olds.) Connecting all of these sensual delights are monstrous intestines lined with dangling organs that are scented by a line-up of aromatherapy-worthy spices like ginger and clove. 

What’s it all mean? Who gives a crap? All I know is I haven’t felt this good since I chilled out on those labial pillows at the Pipolotti Rist exhibit at MoMA earlier this year. 

The show is up until June 14. Do not miss.


Inside the belly of the beast it smells like cloves.


No nails or screws were used. The piece is suspended by loops in the ceiling using weight and counter weight. The skeletal wood frame structure interlocks like a puzzle.


Chillin’ in the Barney room. Coulda used cocktails.


Balls, balls, as far as the eye can see.


Uncircumcised schlong thingy dangles from the ceiling.


Another view. Barney pillow visible on the left.


A river of pink. So happy! Neto makes testosterone art that’s also huggy.


In the bowels of the turmeric chamber.


Saying goodbye to anthropodino, as the installation is called. Would love to have one of these in my living room.

Read the NYT review here.

12 comments

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  2. C-Mon

    guys in sperm costume woulda been too perfect. i think my head might have exploded from the joy of seeing such a thing…

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