ASU Art Museum is proud to present “Pillory,” the latest work in the museum’s Pilot Projects: Art. Response. Now. initiative, on view beginning April 9, 2021. Hugh Hayden’s sculpture “Pillory” (2020) addresses power, control and justice, themes that are achingly relevant in the wake of the murder of George Floyd in May 2020 as well as many others, including Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Philando Castile, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade and Dion Johnson. Of this mix between a modern-day police barricade and a pillory — a medieval punishment device — Hayden remarked, "I'd call the piece a doppelgänger or the synthesis of a pair of state functioned doppelgängers of oppression that are centuries apart."
Pilot Projects is an institutional initiative that emerged from ASU Art Museum’s unique ability as a university art museum to be adaptive and experimental. Arising from the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, Black Lives Matter protests and a nationwide call for museums to address racial and social justice, Pilot Projects is a vehicle to center art and artists in the service of creative free expression and community well-being.
About the artist
Hugh Hayden is a sculptor raised in Dallas, Texas and trained as an architect. He uses natural elements and recognizable objects — discarded wood, rare indigenous timbers, souvenir African sculptures — to create works that challenge viewers’ perceptions of themselves, others and the environment.
Hayden was born in Dallas, Texas, in 1983 and lives and works in New York City. He holds an MFA from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University. His work was the subject of a solo exhibition at White Columns in New York in 2018. His work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, including at JTT, New York (2018); Clearing, New York (2018); Tanya Bonakdar Gallery (2018); PPOW Gallery, New York (2017); Gavin Brown’s enterprise, New York (2017); Postmasters Gallery, New York (2016); MoMA PS1, Rockaway Beach, New York (2014); Socrates Sculpture Park, New York (2014); and Abrons Art Center, New York (2013), among others. He is the recipient of residencies at Glenfiddich in Dufftown, Scotland (2014); Abrons Art Center and Socrates Sculpture Park (both 2012) and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (2011). Hugh Hayden is represented by Lisson Gallery.
Image credit: Hugh Hayden, “Pillory,” 2020. Milk paint on cedar with stainless steel hardware and locks, 44 x 96 x 42 inches.