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Shit Talk Tours adds finesse to art

Comediennes lead tours through the museum and say whatever they feel.
Photo: Genessa Gutzait · The Sentry

MCA’s new tour is captivating

The Museum of Contemporary Art’s (MCA) new take on art tours provides art and comedy lovers alike with a great, hilarious, and informative tour of the museum’s extraordinary exhibits.

On Aug. 24, the MCA’s summer series “Shit Talk Tours” ended. The series began July 13 and occurred every other Friday through July and August. The series featured comedians from the Pussy Bros, who are, according to Westword, “Denver’s female comedy power group.” The series-closing tour showcased Christie Buchele, one of the founders of the female group.

The tour began with an introduction, where Buchele said, “We’ll see how this tour goes. I already got my check, so I don’t really care.” When she asked the group their names, Buchele said, “So what’s everyone’s name? I’m just kidding, I don’t really give a fuck. Let’s move along to the first exhibit.”

Lisa Oppenheim’s Spine, which recycled photographs from Lewis Hine, an early 20th-century photojournalist, served as the first stop. Spine highlights the conditions of child labor during this period with the use of photonegative tapestry copies and photos of children’s deformed spines, further accentuated with the use of a break in the photograph.

Buchele gracefully covered the exhibit with informative and insightful facts about the artwork while still getting in a few jokes about the work and concluded the room saying, “I love that this group is small but still just as slow to get to the next room.”   

The group entered Kristen Hatgi Sink’s Honey, which proved to be unusually intriguing to viewers thanks to a colossal tank of honey as the piece’s focal point. “Sink does do live shows; however, they have to break the shows up, so she can recuperate from her yeast infections,” said Buchele. As the group left this work, she queried the crowd asking, “Does anyone have questions? Keep in mind that there are, in fact, stupid questions.”

The tour slowly meandered down the stairs of the MCA into Patrice Renee Washington’s Charts, Parts, and Holders. The exhibit provided great insight into the catalogued daily life of an African-American person and awareness of stereotyped black culture. The exhibit description read: “The foods, bodies, and consumer goods depicted in Charts, Parts, and Holders share a common theme: they all have stereotyped associations with black bodies and culture.” Buchele was much more serious concerning the significance of this exhibit and presented it in a more typical style of art tour.

The final exhibit Buchele covered was Derrick Adam’s Transmission. Viewers were immediately met with the sight of television screens depicting SMPTE color bars of analog television, all made of various papers, some even using African fabrics. Each television featured an old channel guide that showcased black television figures. The exhibit flaunts black culture and African-Americans that have been significant in American television and society.

Buchele, still serious during this exhibit because of the complicated topics, made a few jokes concerning the OJ Simpson trial (which was present on one of the television guides) and released the group to explore the rest of the exhibit, saying, “Thank you all for your time, I’m sorry I couldn’t hold your attention to those of you talking over me in the back.”

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