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Teen Summer Workshop Series
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The Mattress Factory is an artist-centered museum, international residency program and renowned producer and presenter of installation art. We say “yes” to artists, offering time and space to dream and realize projects in our hometown, Pittsburgh, PA. We invite audiences from around the world and around the corner to step inside, immerse and connect with the artistic process.

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Michael Tracy

Chapel: In the Mexican War Streets


This play is a reflection on the (im)possibility of accepting diversity and the other. The fragmented body of the neoplasm—the fruit of unstable conditions—overcomes barriers, loves and denies itself and others, wanders around, forgetting its profession. It frequently and with pleasure divides, goes through dangerous palpation, questions the possibility of contact with the experience of the other. Poorly brought up but very successful, it invites us to a trans-species transition.

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The installation is a summation of the past fifteen years of the artist's work. The gallery is 3,500 square feet, divided longitudinally by a wall.

The entire installation is arranged and constructed according to the principles of ecclesiastical architecture. The first room, which Tracy describes as the "passive space," is a storage area. A combination of his altarpieces, crosses, tabernacles, and oil paintings are housed there.

The "active space," which consists of an altar to the left and a sacristy to the right, functions as a performance space. This area contains huge, golden triptychs, dark Stations of the Cross, an altar pierced with machetes, and rows of mesquite chairs.

Curated by Sheena Wagstaff


Artists in Residence: Damien Hirst, Michael Tracy, April 9 – December 31, 1994
About The Artist

Michael Tracy (b. 1943) is an American artist best known for his sculptures defining minimalism and conceptual tendencies of the 1980s and early 1990s. He lives in San Ignacio, a small border town in Texas.

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