"Pomegranate Seeds in the Shape of a Heart," Fallen Fruit (David Burns & Austin Young), 2014; Burns and Young recently visited the Skirball Museum to seek inspiration from objects in the collection. Together with Skirball Assistant Curator Linde Lehtinen, they examined many treasures, including a 1931 cookbook of “Famous Recipes for Jewish Housewives."
Fallen Fruit at the Skirball
May 13–October 12, 2014
ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
The Skirball Cultural Center is pleased to present an exhibition project with the Los Angeles–based art collaborative Fallen Fruit (David Burns and Austin Young). The name is derived from a passage in the book of Leviticus: “When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap all the way to the edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest. You shall not pick your vineyard bare, or gather the fallen fruit of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger.” Fallen Fruit’s community-based projects use fruit as a medium to explore social engagement. The themes of generosity and sharing that guide their work align with the Skirball’s mission of hospitality, equality, and civility.
After exploring the Skirball’s permanent collection of Jewish cultural artifacts, Burns and Young found initial inspiration for their project in a seventeenth-century ketubbah (marriage contract)—specifically the decorative use of the pomegranate, a symbol of fertility and marriage in Jewish culture as well as many others. Focused on this fruit, the artists will research the emotional, cultural, and intellectual “ingredients that make for a great relationship” during the course of an artist residency at the Skirball. Inspired by the symbolism and beauty of pomegranates, Fallen Fruit will collaborate with the public to create a new relationship contract inspired by Jewish heritage, and to explore contemporary attitudes about love and relationships.
In addition to Fallen Fruit’s creation of specially designed pomegranate wallpaper for display in the Skirball's Ruby Gallery, a range of public programs will accompany the installation, including pomegranate tree adoptions and interactive events encouraging visitors to share with and learn from each other. The exhibition will culminate with a public program coinciding with the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, celebrating the bounty of the harvest.
Fallen Fruit is an art collaboration originally conceived in 2004 by David Burns, Matias Viegener, and Austin Young. Since 2013, David Burns and Austin Young have continued the collaborative work.
Help Launch the Artist Residency!
The pomegranate is a symbol of fertility and marriage in Jewish and many other cultures. Focused on this fruit, David Burns and Austin Young of Fallen Fruit are researching the emotional, cultural, and intellectual “ingredients that make for a great relationship.”
Love is a universal experience. Please take a moment to think about your relationships and consider the question: “What is the best ingredient for true love?” Send your responses to email@example.com. We welcome answers from people of all ages.
“What Shall I Serve? Famous Recipes for Jewish Housewives,” 1931. Collection of Skirball Museum, Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles, CA. Gift of Solomon L. Gluck. HUCSM 1996.87.1.