Rachel Maclean to curate Too Cute! Sweet is about to get Sinister at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery
Artist and filmmaker Rachel Maclean will curate a major exhibition at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, Too Cute! Sweet is about to get Sinister, opening January 26. The artist known for her distinctive satirical films will examine the world of cuteness by curating works from the Arts Council Collection and Birmingham’s collection to reveal how objects and images can have the unique ability to be simultaneously sweet and sinister. An opening film has also been created by Maclean to introduce the themes of the exhibition.
Maclean’s display will showcase the multiple manifestations of sinister cuteness with works ranging from 19th-century oil paintings to internet-inspired installations. Artists include John Isaacs, Gillian Wearing, Ana Maria Pacheco, Helen Chadwick, Paula Rego, Peter Blake and Hermann Sondermann.
From adult onesies to bunny ear photo-filters, there is an overwhelming presence of cuteness in contemporary society. Through the exhibition Maclean will ask why we feel the need to share and reproduce cute things, as well as question the fine line between cuteness and creepiness.
Too Cute! will also extend the social commentary that pervades Maclean’s video work. Pinocchio-inspired Spite Your Face was written following the Brexit campaign and most recently Make Me Up depicts social media’s encouragement for women to adhere to societal ideals. Maclean’s hour-long film Feed Me featured in BMAG’s 2017 Arts Council Collection exhibition I Want! I Want! and examined the preoccupations of contemporary society.