The Ladd Brothers Lead Artist Tour at Affordable Art Fair | Sunday September 25 | 3pm
For our fourth and final AAF artist-led tour on Sunday September 25, 2011 we bring you Steven and William Ladd. Steven and William are brothers born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1977 and 1978. Steven studied at Rockhurst University where he explored theatre, fashion, performance and art. William traveled the world as a model and started fine-tuning his interest in beadwork. They reunited in Brooklyn, New York and have been collaborating for the past ten years. Together they have forged a body of work that exists in a nexus of text, drawing, sculpture, installation, performance, design, and fashion. They have combined a range of techniques, forms, and practices, forging something which is uniquely theirs. The values guiding their collaboration are: Spend your life doing what you love, Be focused and disciplined, and Collaborate. The brothers work has been included in exhibitions at The Smithsonian Institution: Cooper Hewitt, National Design Museum, The Decorative Arts Museum at the Louvre, The Museum of Art and Design, and The Contemporary Museum Hawaii.
Their values and attention to detail combine to create some of the most intricate, innovative, surprising and delightfully dark work we have seen in a long time. The work is layered both literally and metaphorically and in a recent studio visit and performance with the brothers we had the pleasure of witnessing and documenting these layers first-hand. We watched the brothers unfold a three part piece titled 'Stairway to Heaven,' Stack Infection' and 'Ant Infestation' (2010) in which each set starts as a series of hand-made boxes and opens up into tiny worlds of intricate landscapes created by handmade beadwork sculptures, fabric layers and crevasses of found-materials. The work is delightful but also strikingly dark. It deals with infestation and decay and as the title suggestions infection. This is a theme in much of their work, but don’t let this deter you, this is an infection you can live with and more than that, an infection that you can love. The work addresses cycles of life death, rebirth and transformation through fabric and design. While their work is certainly based in practices of fine-art making they walk a fine line between architectural design and development as well as performance. The work is not complete until the Ladd brothers have meticulously laid it out in the silent dance they do, unfolding and unstacking each individual component of the multi-component boxes that contain the work. The brothers are the key to the completion of this work.
You can see more images of the three pieces and their performance as well as watch our video interview and shots we got of their performance here. Their tour kicks off at 3pm on Sunday and they will be exploring works in the fair they love and that address their own practices and mediums. You can rsvp for the Ladd’s tour through The Art Dossier at RSVP@theartdossier.com and we will send you more details.