The Peanut Gallery

Exhibition Image

Nov 4, 2016



by Alyssa Miserendino

The Peanut Gallery is an installation based on donations and assistance from the artist's community. The exhibition is created with the help of others. It is an experiment in creating a space of play in a systematic institution that sometimes takes itself too seriously. The visitor becomes the object, and the interactions that happen are a matter of chance. As Michael Fried wrote in 1967, in his seminal essay, Art and Objecthood, “Presentness is grace.”

 Why am I an artist? and why am I making – stuff –? These are the questions I have recently returned to in my practice; questions that at one time caused me to walk away from making art, and the art world, for five years.

Packaging peanuts are a symbol for keeping our stuff safe and contained – elevating our stuff to another level. But I also find these objects of transport somewhat comical, celebratory, and frustrating to contain. The packing peanut becomes an object representing contradiction. 

Packing peanuts appear simplistic in their logic, a series of repetitive objects, on opening night. As time goes on, they may also signify entropy – disorder and randomness. I don’t know what will happen when these peanuts are stepped and stomped on after a month. I can imagine they would start to break down and dissolve, while becoming traces of energy, from visitors within the theatrically titled, The Peanut Gallery.

This is the last exhibition in Flanders Gallery's current space and the first time The Peanut Gallery will be exhibited in its entirety. Perhaps it is quite fitting that this experiment has found its first home at Flanders Gallery, as it transitions and repackages with Lump in the new year, celebrating change.

Thank you to those who have donated material, making this exhibition possible:

Jeanine Tatlock

Kontek Systems

The Scrap Exchange

Shimar Recycling

VAE Raleigh

Exhibition Image