Iago's Desdemona, 2013
Murano glass and wood
40 1/8 in. x 25 3/16 in. x 6 in.
The Henry Melville Fuller Acquisition Fund.
What if I told you this glass sculpture is not black? You surely would be confused, probably think your eyes are deceiving you, and you might question what you just read on the wall text next to the work. It’s true though. This mirror is actually made of a red glass so dense that it appears black.
This revelation brings up ideas of perception versus reality, and superficiality versus authenticity. The artist, Fred Wilson, is interested in creating work that raises critical questions about historical narratives around racism. With this in mind, how might we relate the color of this sculpture to ideas about how race is constructed, particularly in America? I leave this for you to ponder as you gaze into the mirror.