Suzanne McClelland (American, born Jacksonville, Florida, 1959)
Aquatint with spit bite and sugar lift on custom-made Torinoko paper
Sheet: 32 3/8 in. × 38 in. (82.2 × 96.5 cm)
Gift of Craig and Elizabeth Zammiello, 2015
Not on view
McClelland engages the appearance, sounds, structures, and regulations of language in its various forms by examining found passages, both written and spoken, from which she “lifts” fragments. In Mr. Man she distorts letters, turning them into near abstractions; while some hint at words, most represent only themselves, with the two towering mounds recalling piles of discarded sounds, texts, or thoughts. McClelland defies the dictates for reading (which in English involve moving from left to right and from top to bottom, a structure Johns applied in Gray Alphabets), instead making visible stutters, repetitions, ellipses, and other irregularities of oral rhythms. The title, Mr. Man, refers to an insult hurled against a celebrated writer in the Stephen King book Misery by a character memorable for her refusal to use crude language.
Signature: lower left corner below the image in graphite: “Suzanne McClelland 2001”
Inscription: titled in the bottom center below the image (“Mr. Man”), and inscribed in the lower right “PP 1/3,” all in graphite.
Craig Zammiello; Donor: Craig Zammiello
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Wordplay: Matthias Buchinger’s Drawings from the Collection of Ricky Jay," January 8, 2016–April 11, 2016.