American artist Mike Kelley is the type of creative mind who has the ability to create works that seem to withstand the test of time. Unlike some whose works are based upon an era-specific trend or a fleeting fad, Kelley’s work – perhaps by virtue of its inherently humanistic approach – possesses a timeless value to it. Often pulling upon found objects to comprise his sculptures, one of Kelley’s most celebrated pieces is the one pictured here – City 0000. Currently on display at a group exhibition at New York’s David Zwirner Gallery, City 0000 poses a bright and bold contrast to the stark white walls and smooth concrete of the open space.
City 0000 depicts the fictitious city of Kandor, the birthplace of Superman on the planet Krypton. Cast in a bold, chromatic series of colors, City 0000 is made up from a translucent resin and lit by interior LED lights and the skyline is comprised of a glowing grouping of obelisks, towers, and pillars. Holding a particularly personal and special place within Kelley’s mind, Kandor reckons to his childhood in which – according to DC Comics – Kandor was a world that was miniaturized and stolen before Krypton was destroyed. For attendees of the group exhibition, City 0000 holds an even deeper value in light of Kelley’s recent death, bringing to light the melancholic juxtaposition of Kelley’s childhood imagination on display and the finite reality of the human life.