Pissing in the Windy City / Hyperallergic

 Catie Olson, “Krampiss” (2013) (all photos by the author for Hyperallergic unless otherwise noted)


Catie Olson, “Krampiss” (2013) (all photos by the author for Hyperallergic unless otherwise noted)

Little boys don’t piss in rivers. They pee in picturesque ways and all look like the “Manneken Pis,” a small bronze fountain sculpture of a little boy peeing forever into the fountain’s basin. On view in Brussels since it was erected by Hiëronynus Duseuesnoy the Elder in 1618-ish, this sculpture serves as the inspiration for artist Paul Nudd’s group exhibition Little Man’s Pee Pool Party: The Whiz Paddler’s Lament at Chicago’s Antena Gallery. Twenty-some-odd artists contributed their interpretations, which often turn out to be not-so-little and quite un-boyish pissing entities. Each brings its own urination-inspired zest — abjectness, leaking bodily fluids, negation of the phallus, privileging of the cock, and even sex-related group piss play all find their way into this pool party.

Nudd is known for artwork that indulges the gross — slugs, ooze, puss, dangly amorphous shapes with hair attached — but never the grotesque or gory. In that way Nudd’s work is both fairly accessible and not too threatening to the psychosexual order of things, much like the little boy and his playfully flaccid mini-wiener. The only requirement Nudd had for these sculptures is that they all somehow release water in a stream-like fashion; the clear liquid lands in a little swimming pool rather than a gendered urinal or some sort of faux antique fountain. With the exception of a few sculptures that have their own private pissing receptacles — such as Jim Zimpel’s green monster that drips water down its tongue and between two gatekeeper dolls, into a small bowl — the bodies of water are communal.

Read the full story on Hyperallergic: http://hyperallergic.com/88650/pissing-in-the-windy-city/