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Suppressed Desires Party • Curator's Statement

House Guests is an artists-in-residence and exhibition program that celebrates the history of the Garrett family, collectors and patrons of the arts, who hosted artists and musicians at their Evergreen estate during the first half of the 20th century.  Each year Evergreen House Museum of Johns Hopkins University opens its doors to artists and invites them to use the collections, the architecture and the grounds to practice in place.  Evergreen has thousands of extraordinary objects, some 30,000 books, a fascinating archive of the Garrett family who lived here from 1878 to 1952, and 48 rooms filled with art and history, all on 26 acres in Baltimore City.  House Guests offers the public new ways to see and understand this historic place through the work of contemporary artists.

Suppressed Desires Party, a series of temporary installations at Evergreen by 2004 artist-in-residence Denise Tassin, takes its title from a party given by the Sunpapers editor-in-chief Hamilton Owens and his wife at their Baltimore home in the 1930’s.  The Suppressed Desire costume party was an invitation for guests to come dressed as the person they most wanted to be.  Mrs. Owens dressed as her friend Alice Warder Garrett, Mrs. Garrett came as Charlie Chaplin, and John Work Garrett arrived as Albert Einstein.  Tassin added the s to Desire to more accurately describe her 29 installations reflecting on only a fraction of her reactions to the house. 

Jackie O’Regan, Curator
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