"My current work investigates ideas of perception by dissecting the artifacts of America's consumer culture. I am looking for something unknown in the face of the familiar."
Alex Da Corte (b. 1980) scans grocery stores, street corners, and IKEA showrooms to find materials for his assemblages and videos, which utilize everything from food to hardware. "The challenge is to surprise with the familiar," Da Corte says, "to extract the unnoticed in between spaces of our everyday experiences, turning things on their heads." Born in Camden, New Jersey, he lived in Caracas, Venezuela until he was eight years old, and then returned to the United States, where he studied at Philadelphia's University of the Arts and received his MFA in sculpture at Yale University. Da Corte began to work in sculpture after he discovered 20th-century artists such as Claes Oldenburg, Andy Warhol, and Marchel Duchamp, and realized that sculpture could be "soft, drippy, flat, alien, quiet, and surreal." His works dissect artifacts of American consumer culture—soda, shampoo, beauty projects, and plastic junk—in order to reconfigure them as objects that play with and question our standards, symbols, and traditions. His work has been included in group exhibitions at the Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania; PS1 MoMA in Long Island City, NY; Art Basel in Miami; and at solo exhibitions in Philadelphia, New York City, Paris, Vancouver, and elsewhere. He has had recent solo exhibitions at David Risley Gallery, Denmark in May 2014, and White Cube Gallery in London and Carl Kostyál, Stockholm in June 2014. Da Corte has collaborated with other artists like Borna Sammak—resulting in a September 2013 show on the hoagie at Oko, New York—and emcee Le1f, whose "Hush BB" music video was directed by Da Corte.