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Weapons of Destruction Transformed into art-McCrow’s History Interrupted

This Thursday, Carl McCrow’s series discussing international arms proliferation opens at Hoerle-Guggenheim gallery, an exhibition of sculptural works made from repurposed weapons sourced from areas of conflict.


Hoerle-Guggenheim Gallery is pleased to present History Interrupted, The Art of Disarmament, a solo presentation of Carl McCrow’s on-going series addressing international arms proliferation. History Interrupted…marks the US début of the UK based artist and features nearly 20 AK-47s and small arms procured directly from areas of conflict, decommissioned and repurposed as conceptual artworks by McCrow, who uses the weapons in his 3-dimensional pieces that point to the narrative of each gun’s origin. The gallery will host an opening reception at 527 W 23rd St. on Thursday, April 30th, from 6 to 9 PM.

Presented on stark gallery walls, the AK-47 conveys its power and capacity for destruction. The most recognizable gun in the world has become a metaphorical stand in for power, domination, and the superiority of science and machines. McCrow harnesses the mainstream fetishization of these weapons, translating their gravitas to art through the application of paint, gold leaf, barbed wire and other materials. This manipulation exposes the tragic cliché the guns also represent: the world’s war torn regions locked in seemingly endless conflict, each new uprising fueled by a scrappy arsenal of black market weapons. Elegantly, the work also presents a solution: what if there were less guns? With each gun acquired as art, a cycle is completed as one more emotionless killing machine is removed from the world. Rebirthed as conceptual objects, the barcode and serial numbers McCrow gives each piece are a reminder of their provenance and grisly legacy.

The series reflects a personal paradox for McCrow, who is both fascinated and repulsed by guns, and intimately aware of their gruesome nature after a close friend of the artist’s lost his limbs fighting with the British Commandos in Afghanistan. When confronted with the reality of these guns, McCrow decided his work must not only demonstrate the severity and scope of arms proliferation, it must also deal with it in a practical and meaningful way.”

About the Artist

Carl McCrow is a London based artist and activist. He has previously exhibited at Oxo Gallery and Opera Gallery in London. In July 2013 he launched One Less Gun, a charity that aims to destroy 1,000,000 guns in conflict areas across the globe.

About the Gallery

Hoerle-Guggenheim is a modern and contemporary art gallery founded in 2014 by Philippe Hoerle-Gugggenheim. Located on West 23rd Street in Chelsea, the gallery specializes in bold, process-oriented work by emerging and established artists. Hoerle-Guggenheim is committed to developing its international program, presenting ambitious and diverse exhibitions that emphasize both aesthetics and concept.

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