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Daniel Cooney Fine Art is pleased to announce a solo exhibition by Doug Meyer titled WyldLands. Featuring never before exhibited work made by the artist during social isolation, WyldLands features 15 sculptures, future relics, memorabilia, and ephemera that transport us to the year 2036, a time when escapist playgrounds have allowed people to endure living through a series of pandemics that began with the 2020 COVID-19 crisis.

Meyer, who maintains a successful design business with his brother Gene, is best known for his dreamlike installations that celebrate the intersection of fantasy, fiction, and real life narratives. Long fascinated by history and storytelling, Meyer creates immersive miniature environments that serve as metaphors and visual analogues for the enduring challenges we face in an increasingly chaotic world.

When the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, the New York City-based artist retreated to his Chelsea studio were he could immerse himself in creating a futurist utopia known as “WyldLands.” In Meyer’s alternate universe, we discover that 2020 was merely the start of a series of bad things to come. Meyer imagines that in 2023, a novel SARS virus would emerge, resulting in the death of 6.5% of the world’s population.

In the wake of this catastrophe, Meyer envisions the United States splitting in half, with the western states seceding to form WestAmerica Confederation. As the world is forced to cope with the on-going pressures of social isolation, the fictional private equity firm Cherenko­Moksovitz Capital LP begins developing WyldLands as an “escapist playground in a time of confinement” in the Sonoran Desert. Meyer envisions WyldLands as a modern take on grandiose playgrounds of yore, from Roman Caligula’s Roman compound Horti Lamiani, Francois Racine de Monvilles 18th century masterpiece the Désert de Retz, and American amusement parks of the early twentieth century.

The exhibition unfolds as the apotheosis of a moment whose time has come: the 2036 grand opening of WyldLands — a place where the global elite can slip away from the horrors of everyday life and indulge their desires for play, adventure, and freedom inside a desert landscape featuring Meyer’s series of fantastical isolation bunkers.

The exhibition begins with a timeline, bringing viewers up to speed on all the changes that transpire over the next 15 years, then fully immerses them within the wonders of WyldLands. The front gallery will be dark, with Meyer’s magical sculptures spot lit atop pedestals, where they will offer viewers a look at the world of tomorrow. In the second gallery, Meyer presents a host of memorabilia and ephemera such as architectural drawings, rendering, paintings, and marketing materials such as the WyldLands handbook, invite opening, and other promotional pieces. 

Despite the tragedies that have befallen the world, Meyer’s work reveals the innate human desire to find creative solutions to problems. We are invited to look into a brave new world reimagining itself as a realm for individuals, families, and groups to not only survive but thrive in an on-going state of seclusion.

Doug Meyer is a multidisciplinary artist currently working in New York City. A graduate of Parsons School of Design and School of Visual Arts,. Meyer’s first solo exhibition "BOD" was shown in 2003 at Rocket Projects, Miami. In 2014, Meyer embarked upon the Heroes Project, an acclaimed series that pays homage to fifty creative figures who were early victims of AIDS. Exhibited in New York, Miami and Los Angeles in 2016, the work later became a book Heroes: A Tribute in three editions. Meyer recently unveiled a commissioned work for the Speed Museum in Louisville where he created large scale movable furniture called “floats” for the museum’s lobby.

A fully illustrated 60 page catalogue is available.

Please contact the gallery for more information at 212 255 8158 or