Mike Kelley (Detroit, 1954 - Los Angeles, 2012) is an inescapable figure in the freak-scene and grotesque art that influenced a whole generation of artists. He was not only a sculptor, curator, musician and writer, but also authored a radical ironic, poetic and deeply autobiographical multimedia work that became a reference point in the American counterculture before becoming established the contemporary art world. Kelley’s interest in countercultures is reflected in his art, which uses assemblage and appropriation, and is marked by many references to popular imagery. In his multimedia installations he plays theatricality and gore, a genre derived from horror films that inspires both disgust and laughter in the viewer, using so-called “abject” materials or stuffed animals, for example, in order to encourage critical reflection on American society.
His work was included in the exhibition 'Untitled, 2020' (2020) at Punta della Dogana.