FLEX considers intersections of muscular physiques and heroic images, how they represent changing notions of bravery, beauty, and health. Sculpted bodies become sites of desire, power, and cultural performance, where different types of identity acquire definition, much as muscles do. This exhibition demonstrates how certain classical ideals are referenced and re-articulated in modern art and media, whether employed to authorize or to interrogate modern constructions of masculinity. Dramatic physical transformations are often accompanied by a rhetoric of self-improvement along with rituals of self-devotion, which might tacitly or explicitly endorse ageism or ableism. FLEX looks carefully at muscled images, but also reflects upon the unrelenting gaze through which bodies are continually scrutinized, criticized, and corrected—if not perfected. 
Exhibition Name
Exhibition Type
Faculty Curated
Group Exhibitions
Malloy Wing
Feb 22, 2020 - Jun 7, 2020
FLEX is co-curated by Dan Curley, Associate Professor of Classics, and Gregory Spinner, Teaching Professor in Religious Studies.
Leonce Raphael Agbodjélou, Arax Studio (Gregor Arax), Athletic Model Guild Studios (Bob Mizer), Bruce of Los Angeles Studio (Bruce Bellas), Harry Benson, Cassils, Nick Cave, James Esber, Skip Faulkner, Chie Fueki, Hendrick Goltzius, Lon of New York Studio (Alonzo “Lon” Hanagan), Paul Harding, Ken Heyman, Lucy Kim, John Lesnick, Anthony J. Sansone, Andres Serrano, Spartan of Hollywood Studios (Constantine), Nancy Spero, Michael Stokes, Edwin F. Townsend, Al Urban Studio, Russ Warner, Heinrich Weishaupt (after Samuel Moore)
Student Staff
Lily warshaw
Lily Warshaw
Student Advisory Council, past: Exhibitions Assistant, Summer Volunteer
Yuwen Jiang
Exhibitions Intern
Emily Maar with a Sol Lewitt wall drawing in the background
Emily Maar
Registrarial Assistant, Student Advisory Council
A young man wears a dark gray turtleneck sweater and looks at the camera.
Theo Carol
Registrarial Intern, past: Tang Guide
Jared Azud in front of a wall drawing by Sol Lewitt
Jared Azud
Public Programming Assistant, Student Advisory Council, past: Registrarial Assistant
Lila Dittersdorf
Registrarial Assistant, Student Advisory Council
Anchor name: Additional Content
Anchor name: Digital Tour
Anchor name: Faculty Essays

FLEX Faculty Essays

FLEX Student Labels

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