"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

each 40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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In 1991 Alan Belcher travelled to war-torn Liberia in West Africa with United Nations temporary personnel status as a photographer. On his second day in Liberia he was arrested under suspicion of spying by the war-lord Charles Taylor and kept hostage at an abandoned mine in the rebel territory. After release, he spent a week traveling to various market places in and around Monrovia photographing Liberian civil war refugees. The resulting black and white portraits were printed in color and then those photographs were duct-taped to rope which was bound to painted corrugated steel sheets, each with a bag of North American groceries (both fresh and packaged goods) securely sandwiched within. This surplus food held within the sculptures continued to spoil during the passing weeks of exhibition, stressing both the gravity and immediacy imperitive to the Liberian refugee relief situation. This body of work was first exhibited at Josh Baer Gallery in New York, and then at Daniel Buchholz Galerie in Köln. Proceeds from the exhibitions went to the United Nations World Food Program.

"Untitled (Liberians)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberians)" 1991

Installation at Galerie Daniel Buchholz, Köln Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries. each 40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Left: collection Gerhardt Richter, Köln

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"Untitled (Liberians)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberians)" 1991

Installation at Josh Baer Gallery, New York each 40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberians)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberians)" 1991

each 40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

Detail showing photograph duct-taped to rope and bound to the painted corrugated steel. 40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photos, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

Detail showing grocery bag sandwiched between photograph and painted corrugated steel. 40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photos, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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Letter of arrest
Letter of arrest
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Installation view
Installation view

Installation view at Daniel Buchholz Galerie, Köln 1991 Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries. each 24" x 24" x 11 inches (approx)

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"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991
"Untitled (Liberian)" 1991

40" x 40" x 12 inches (approx) Color photograph, duct tape, corrugated steel, enamel paint, rope, and a bag of groceries.

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"Saturday in Liberia"
"Saturday in Liberia"

Journal account of the artist's arrest by Charles Taylor. Gazette, November 16 /17th, pg. 2 Publisher: Esther Schipper

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New Yorker review
New Yorker review

Review of the exhibition at Josh Baer Gallery, New York; The New Yorker, December 23rd

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Artforum review
Artforum review

Review of the Liberian exhibition at Josh Baer Gallery by Donald Kuspit; Artforum, March Issue 1992

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