Wild Life: Elizabeth Murray & Jessi Reaves

Published with Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, in 2021
Edited by Karen Kelly, Rebecca Matalon, and Barbara Schroeder
Text by Rebecca Matalon. Conversations between Kate Horsfield & Elizabeth Murray and Johanna Fateman & Jessi Reaves
Design by Eric Wrenn
104 pages, 70 color images, softcover, 9 ½ x 11 inches
ISBN-13: 978-1-7336889-3-2


This volume brings together the paintings and drawings of Elizabeth Murray (1940–2007) and the work of New York–based sculptor Jessi Reaves (born 1986). Despite the generations that separate Murray and Reaves, this publication highlights each artist’s lyrical, playful, and rigorous engagements with the decorative, domestic, and bodily. Published to accompany an exhibition at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Wild Life explores Murray’s and Reaves’s often ambiguous conceptions of the body and the home, wherein both body and home are continuously coming together and falling apart.

This book features a newly commissioned conversation between Reaves and Johanna Fateman, as well as a reprint of a historical interview between Murray and Kate Horsfield, which together chart the two artists’ irreverent plays with color and form, high and low cultural references, and notions of masculinity and femininity.

Praise and Press

[This book] demonstrates how these artists share a talent for twisting the work of male makers until it transforms into fertile and vulnerable biomorphs. . . . Birth and destruction triumph over the glossy fantasies of the past.

—Yxta Maya Murray, Bookforum

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