Ben Perrone (b. 1933), War Ongoing Project, 2010; mixed media, video and audio, variable; Courtesy of the artist
Ben Perrone: War Ongoing Project
On View Friday, April 9–Sunday, May 30, 2010
An inescapable mass of bags, The Project, confronts the spectator with the human sacrifice and human costs of war. A fifteen foot wall of small black bags contain the names of war dead and serves as a metaphor for the altered or ended lives of the many dead and disabled, sacrifices in the name of war. Against a near wall are a pile of another five thousand bags and two wheelchairs. From the empty chairs one hears stories of soldiers who have experienced the hardships of war. These stories, interwoven with Hugh Levick’s original music and several projections, re-enforce the loss and the disruption and confusion caused by a seemingly endless violence plaguing our history.
Ben Perrone is a self-described "Vietnam protester, artist, and human being," and a staunch advocate for life over death. He considers war useful for industrialists, but hard on the common man. War Ongoing Project personalized the concepts of conflicts and loss in an emotional way. And like war, the Project was unceasing, and evolved over the course of the exhibition. Contributers included Rocco La Penna, Jeffrey Proctor, Hugh Levick, Kevin Shadel, Josef Krysiak, Greg Condon, amoung others.
This exhibition could not have been possible without the generous support of Sti-Co Industries, Package Design and Supply, Buffalo Wheelchair, Antoinette Kaiser, Susan and Rico Garfolo, Fred and Marie Houston, Judith Bradshaw, Rev. Bruce and Phoebe McKay, Joan V. Fitzgerald, Lucetta V. Franco, Horace and Charlotte Franco, Tom and Mel Buckham, Melody Winnig, Thomas R Greene, Gerald C. Mead Jr., Joseph M. Delaney, Dale and Sally Schwallenberg, Tim Leary, Andrew Hutner, Robert Stubley, Howard T. Hoag, Gerry Evans, and Sally Lenhardt.