Institute of Contemporary Art (UTC) / 752 Vine St. January 1 - May 1st

Adam Parker Smith

ICA Chattanooga present three sculptures from Adam Parker Smith’s Sarcophagi series on the campus grounds of UTC.

The works are located across from the University Center on pedestrian Vine Street and available for viewing 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Smith’s Sarcophagi appear recognizable as sub-zero sleeping bags standing upright on marble bases. Could they be occupied, and if so, by whom?

Created in 2021 as a response to the world’s huge loss from the Covid-19 pandemic, Smith’s Sarcophagi, while playful and recognizable, mourn the absence of public commemorations of death during this global crisis. In name, shape, and tonality, they also reference ancient and elaborate burial rituals, where embalming and entombing a body in stone could preserve it for millennia.

As a sharp contrast, Parker Smith thinks about today’s synthetic materials (like polyester down in sleeping bags) that will outlast us, and maybe even societies, as they occupy landfills around the world. While the objects of his sculptures are easily relatable, they are also undercut with satire, ultimately asking us to think about our positions and societal values.

All works:
Made in 2021
Resin, catalyzed urethane, steel, fiberglass, marble
Copyright @adamparkersmith
Courtesy the artist and @theholenyc

For more information about the works and the artist: