The Birth of James Lee Byars, 2011/2013, Child’s tuxedo, top hat, bow tie, cummerbund, and blindfold made from artist’s own adult tuxedo. Closet: wood, light, hardware, hanger. Dimensions variable.

The Birth of James Lee Byars is inspired by the third line in an idiosyncratic artist’s biography that appears in certain Byars exhibition catalogues: “At the age of four, Byars is given a full tuxedo by his parents. He wears it for special occasions and dances in the middle of the dining-room table for guests.” I took apart my own tuxedo and made a tiny version out of it--bow tie and cummerbund included, as well as typical Byars-related items like a top hat and blindfold. All are installed in a small white purpose-built closet.

This installation was first shown at the Closet Box: Micro Gallery/Wonder Emporium at Box 13 Artspace in Houston, Texas (June 18 2011 -- April 29 2012). Recently, it was included in Sid Sach's Camp Paradox Days at The University of the Arts' Rosenwald--Wolf Gallery in Philadelphia (Aug 25 -- Oct 8 2013).

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