On Display Hygiene - work by Ted Carey
The title of the exhibition predates the pandemic. It stems from the projected video loop shot in early September 2019 in Wendover, Utah. The clip was filmed adjacent to the hangar in which the Enola Gay was stationed during training runs for the bombing of Japan.
Hygiene is considered in terms of a ceaseless daily grind. The act of preservation via destruction. Brushing ones teeth -- scrubbing the bone, sloughing off nightly bacteria, eroding the skull in an attempt to stave off the unpleasant realities of the inevitable.
Hence the quote from Macbeth, transposed to Twitter, the ultimate expression of "sound and fury, signifying nothing." But with the snarky addendum, "don't forget to wash your teeth."
As the Philly area entered lockdown on the day of the opening, the exhibition itself has remained in quarantine with no visitors. This coincidence with the title and the times happens to be the most poetic gesture of all. In 2020 on planet earth, behind reinforced glass emblazoned with the word "hygiene" sits an exhibition no one may ever see.
I reckon Duchamp would be delighted.