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Daydream

2001
21st Century
12 1/4 in. x 16 1/4 in. (31.12 cm x 41.28 cm)

Sarah McEneaney, American, b. 1955

Object Type: Paintings
Creation Place: North America, United States, Pennsylvania
Medium and Support: Egg tempera on wood
Credit Line: Museum Purchase, Susan L. Mills Fund
Accession Number: 2008.38
Sarah McEneaney, a Philadelphia based artist, painter, and community activist depicts herself reclining in her home joined by her two cats and dog who appear as frequent companions in her work. Behind them is a imagined collection of art by Frida Kahlo, Alice Neel, Paul Georges, Charles Burchfield, Ben Shahn, Vija Celmins, Florine Stettheimer, Stephan Balkenhol and Horace Pippin. Despite this epic assortment of objects, her gaze is pointed upwards towards the ceiling, hinting at a sense of ease and familiarity with the art. This piece evokes an idea that we have the power to create our own museums. It’s a subtle critique of the art world and envisions ourselves becoming curators who surround ourselves with images and narratives that are meaningful to us as individuals.

By placing famous and otherwise unattainable works like these on her own living room wall, Daydream presents an alternative way of engaging .with the images that inspire us. Rather than showing herself and the artin a commodified museum environment, McEneaney has placed the objects in her daydream, in a place where she has more autonomy. She includes herself as the main subject identifying with the art to communicate that she isn’t as interested in the mass experience of a museum, but rather sees herself appreciating art away from the institutional setting of the museum. The flattened perspective of Daydream gives us a sense of immediacy, and places the feeling of living on the same plane with these selected pieces. In place of the rarefied experience of seeing an abundance of images in isolation from each other, and from oneself, McEneaney is forming a museum of her dreams.

--Amelia Ravitz-Dworkin, December 2018

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:

Dimensions
  • Frame Dimensions: 14 3/4 in. x 18 3/4 in. x 1 1/2 in. (37.47 cm x 47.63 cm x 3.81 cm)
  • Wood Dimensions: 12 1/4 x 16 1/4 in. (31.12 x 41.28 cm)

Bibliography List
This object has the following bibliographic references:

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