Color photograph of the head and torso of Eric N. Mack, holding a shirt-like garment to his body

Eric N. Mack

Philip Guston Rome Prize
September 6, 2021–February 7, 2022
Artist, New York
Project title
In Austerity the work will be stripped from its support and worn as a sarong
Project description

Christo and Jeanne-Claude first wrapped monuments in the Garden of Villa Borghese, Rome, in 1963. Ten years later, the couple returned to Rome to wrap the Aurelian walls in polypropylene and rope. As the title suggests, the art object, at its most sacred, should reflect altered systems of value, especially in observation of the world brutalities. It imagines the case for the painting object to leave its autonomous support structures to need the body. Contemplating Rome as a setting for such a visual provocation, I site Christo’s practice as a material painting project that needs architecture as support. I seek to engage a wearer as a physical empath to architecture—a genuine transference from passive viewer to wearer and participant in a materially engaged painting project’s sensorial proposition. My objective in application would create a new center for my material research and painting practice in Rome and also allow me to use the city as site for inquiry.

The photograph of Eric N. Mack was taken by Charlie Engman.