Medici Slot Machine
Joseph Cornell's extraordinary collage boxes of dime-store objects celebrated the quotidian. In this theatrical look at the artist's life, Mark Brownell explores how Cornell's art was fed by - and served as an escape from - his claustrophic family life. Witty and insightful with a twist of surrealism, Medici Slot Machine lays bare the artist's world. In the little house on Utopia Parkway in Queens, Mother Helen reigns over her grown sons with a practiced combination of guilt trips and bullying, peppered with snappy aphorisms. Cornell himself, quirky and alienated, is thrust into the popular art limelight almost against his will. And Cornell's brother Robert is both friend and inspiration to the artist, despite the fact that he almost never leaves the house. Intruding into the realm of this dysfunctional trio are the likes of Tony Curtis, Salvador Dali, and Tina, the larcenous girl of Cornell's dreams. Medici Slot Machine illuminates Cornell's triumphs and tragedies, while posing questions about the role of art in society.
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