Gary Baseman: The Door is Always Open makes its Asian debut this summer at MOCA Taipei. Featuring over 500 works created by Baseman over three decades, the retrospective is the most comprehensive look into Baseman’s career to date.
Spanning from the world of publishing to television and film, to fine art, theatre and dance, music and fashion, photography, and toy design, Baseman is a poignant storyteller and artist. His work uses aesthetically raw and childlike imagery that often addresses challenging and complex subject matter – referencing history, the human psyche, and what Baseman calls, “the beauty of the bittersweetness of life.”
For this exhibition, MOCA’s historic Taipei building is re-imagined into a unique experiential home environment in which guests are invited to sit on a sofa or at the dining room table and explore, participate and visit. Each room, thematic in nature, evokes visitors to reflect and share their own stories about family, friends, mortality, pain and suffering, love and loss, secrets and truth.
Featured spaces include the Living Room (Welcome), the Dining Room (Celebration), Hallway (Journey), the Study (Heritage), the Bedroom (the Human Condition), the Den (Play), the Studio Office (Work), the Backyard (Performance), the Park (Escape) and the Alley (Dreams).
“The Door is Always Open” was a phrase used by Baseman’s late father to welcome his son home. As the first American-born child of Holocaust Survivor parents, Baseman also interpreted this phrase as an invitation to march through multiple doors of creative opportunity. Reflected throughout Baseman’s work— much like his predecessors Andy Warhol and John Baldessari—is a playful experimentation to broaden the definition of art and a collapse of the boundary between high/low and fine/commercial art.
Baseman has approached the fine art world over the past 15 years with the perception that “art is not precious, it’s magical.” Baseman strives for his work to be accessible and appealing to broad audiences, inside and outside of museum walls.
Showing the breadth of Baseman’s oeuvre, the exhibition includes illustration works (published in The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, and The Los Angeles Times); Baseman’s complete line of designer toys including Dumb Luck, Hotchachacha, and Toby; costumes and fashion collaborations; video and sculptural installations; and new paintings inspired by his recent trips across Asia.
About MOCA Taipei
The Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei is the first art institution in Taiwan dedicated exclusively to contemporary art. Since its inauguration, the museum has combined its historical architecture with contemporary art, entwining yesterday’s memories with today’s culture. MOCA Taipei continues to persevere on its mission to promote and motivate creativity into Taipei, art into the community, and the ever evolving technology into the new life of the historical building.
For press and media inquiries directly to MOCA Taipei: Shandi Hsin at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on MOCA Taipei, visit:
NO.39 Chang-An West Road Taipei, Taiwan 103 +886 2-2552-3721
About Gary Baseman
Gary Baseman is one of today’s most prominent and multi-faceted Los Angeles-based artists. From his early works as an illustrator and his Emmy award-winning animation series, to his complete line of designer toys and his imaginative paintings and photographs, Baseman’s work is wickedly insightful and seductive. Over the past 15 years, Baseman has exhibited throughout the US, Europe and South America. His current work continues to explore the human condition through painting, performance, film, and fashion.