Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk

After the End

Green-Wood Cemetery
Brooklyn, New York
2021

“Memorial art works are notoriously difficult to pull off. Yet Candy Chang and James A. Reeves, two New York artists who have created similar installations in the past, hit just the right tone with After the End… It provides a place for anyone suffering loss or battered by contemporary life to mourn, meditate and perhaps heal a little.” The New York Times

After the End is a participatory installation dedicated to contemplating loss in all forms—the loss of loved ones, relationships, health, and worlds we once knew—as well as the practices that have helped us endure. Visitors of Green-Wood Cemetery’s historic chapel were invited to anonymously share their experiences with loss on a scroll and place it upon an illuminated altar. Visitors could read others’ reflections or sit in the apse and watch a cycle of projected reflections above while oriented towards the greater community. Set to an original ambient score by Stephen Baker, the installation was inspired by the role of devotional candles in religious ceremonies and selected as a 2021 New York Times Critic’s Pick. Created in collaboration with James A. Reeves, the work gathered the multiplicity of ways we weather the difficult transitions in our lives as we mourn the end of one reality and enter the next. 

Over 5,000 letters were written about the loss of loved ones, relationships, health, homes, jobs, purpose, unlived lives, youth, innocence, certainty, and faith. Visitors also shared the rituals and practices that have comforted them: I swim laps like he did — I eventually forgave you and now I feel lighter — The grief comes in and out like radio static — I am in recovery. I will find my way back — Trees comfort me. Faith exists in these hills — I bought a turntable and began to go through my father’s record collection, his musical legacy — I wish I had appreciated her more when she was still alive — Why did I let you go? — Every year we light candles for each of them — I’ve committed to helping others who are affected by the very thing that took you from me — No matter how painful, I found myself during this time — We all need a little mercy now.

September 15 – December 6, 2021. Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York. Space: 55’ x 42’, altar: 20’ l x 6’ w x 2’ h. writing tables: 12’2″ x 3’1″ x 3’4″, seating: 8′ x 2′ x 2’6″. Wood, LED lights, projectors, speakers, paper, pens. Curated by Harry Weil. Original score by Stephen Baker. Acoustic design by Connor Whiriskey. Video assistance by Rooftop Films. Fabrication assistance by KLN Studio, Frank Morelli, William Rivera, Pelegrin Rosario, Alex Hernandez, and Joseph Cubero. Archival assistance from Nadia Delisfort. This installation is supported with a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Press & Info

Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Candy Chang
Photo by James Reeves
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Candy Chang
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk
Photo by Walter Wlodarczyk



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