Jessica Jackson Hutchins - 20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale London Wednesday, October 5, 2016 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Derek Eller Gallery, New York
    Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2010

  • Exhibited

    New York, Whitney Museum of American Art, Whitney Biennial, 25 February - 30 May 2010, cat., p. 70 (illustrated)
    London, Saatchi Gallery, Paper, 18 June - 3 November 2013, cat., pp. 78-79 (illustrated)

  • Literature

    New York, Volume 43, New York Magazine Company, 2010, p.67

  • Catalogue Essay

    Couch For A Long Time, perhaps the most important work by Jessica Jackson Hutchins, is a homemade altar. Selected for the Whitney Biennale, it is a celebration of change and transformation, while expressing the sense of national pride. The couch, which was from Hutchins’ childhood living room, is covered entirely with newspaper clippings featuring President Obama from the New York Times. Jessica Jackson Hutchins questions the relationship between people and objects, exploring how the interactions form and inform each other. The newspapers suggest the temporal idea of the fleeting nature of news stories. The newspaper became obsolete as soon as being read, but would suddenly be relevant the next morning, printed with new information. On the other hand, the resting ceramics, resembling an idling person, offers vastly different rates of change. Sheltered from weathering by the glaze, the ceramics are eternal, as long as being handled carefully. The contrast is further highlighted by the fact that the information became outdated sometimes even before being read. The title of the work toys with this very notion of time. The physicality of the ceramic sculptures reminds the viewer of the human body, with colours similar to bones or flesh. The ceramic surrogates slouch on the sofa in place of all that had sat there, as if watching the imaginary television in front of it. The newspapers wrapped the sofa up forming a protective layer, as if the room was being painted, preserving it. Couch For A Long Time merges public and private moments, creates a monument symbolising how ephemeral news events influence the everyday life.


Couch For A Long Time

couch, newspaper, ceramic
73.7 x 193 x 90.2 cm (29 x 75 7/8 x 35 1/2 in.)
Executed in 2009.

£20,000 - 30,000 

Sold for £18,750

Contact Specialist
Tamila Kerimova
+ 44 20 7318 4065

20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale

London Auction 6 October 2016