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In most countries and cultures we use food as a function of memory. It’s specifically a human production. The theater of setting a table, providing a spread, and gathering to eat together is a touchstone of every community event that might change us – marriage, death, progress and tragedy. Whether it is in reverence or irreverence, the way we understand each other is grounded in the bread we break with each other, and the structures we impose on the way we gather. It is a concert of a shared identity: a communal performance of what we value, for better or worse. 


Artist Jenny Day (she/her) has been flirting with how the world might end throughout her artistic career. Deep concerns about climate change, natural disasters, and ecological health underpin work that pits the relentlessness of nature against the futility and folly of human construct. What we build inevitably falls down, what we try to get rid of inevitably comes back to haunt us. And the natural world subsumes the wreckage. A Feast to Remember imagines we’ve been disinvited to the party, or perhaps it just got too out of hand.


Through a raucous and playful use of materials, Day stages a meditation on the fragility of our social constructs. This frenzy of excess juxtaposes the urge to order and commemorate with the inevitability of an aftermath. What is abandoned is reclaimed, and the failure of one system sets a stage for new systems to grow out of the chaos. Drawing inspiration not only from the aesthetics of disaster, but from the organized patterns and shapes of organic growth amidst entropy, the feast is one of genesis through destruction.  


A Feast to Remember is curated by elizabet elliott as part of the Independent Projects program at Alabama Contemporary. Jenny Day (b.1981) is an artist who lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She holds an MFA in Painting from the University of Arizona, a BFA in Painting from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and a BA in Environmental Studies from the University of California Santa Cruz. Her exhibition record most recently includes Arte Laguna in Venice, Italy, Czong Institute for Contemporary Art in Korea, Museum of Art Fort Collins, Mesa Arts Museum, Phoenix Art Museum, Blue Star Contemporary Museum in San Antonio, TX, and Elmhurst Museum in Chicago, IL. Day’s work has been supported by an Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grant, a Puffin Foundation Grant, a Contemporary Forum Artist Grant from the Phoenix Art Museum, a Barron Purchase Award and through participation at Greenwich House Pottery, the Ucross Foundation, the Jentel Foundation, and the Playa Foundation For The Arts, and Scala Studios, among others. Jenny Day is represented by Ferrara Showman Gallery in New Orleans, LA, Visions West in Denver, CO, and Galerie Bengelstrater in Dusseldorf, Germany.