About the Project

Grief Is a Beast That Will Never Be Tamed is an ongoing collaboration between Candy Chang and James A. Reeves that uses the ancient myth of the Minotaur to examine the modern mind. Rooted in Minoan civilization, the Minotaur has surfaced throughout the past three thousand years as a symbol of mortality and dread as well as contemporary anxiety of a dark chaotic world and sociopolitical upheaval during emerging totalitarianism. Through a series of public altars and discussions, Grief Is a Beast That Will Never Be Tamed explores the darker dimensions of the psyche. The first mural was installed in Greece in 2017.

Candy Chang. Through the activation of public spaces around the world, Taiwanese-American artist Candy Chang examines the threshold between isolation and community, the psychology of civic engagement, and how shared places can cultivate reflection and kinship among strangers. After struggling with grief and depression, she created the Before I Die participatory public art project, which has now been recreated in over 2,000 cities. She is interested in the relationship between public space and mental health, the dynamics between individual liberty and social cohesion, and a city that exposes and fosters the complexity of the psyche.

James A. Reeves. A writer and educator whose fiction and essays examine dignity, beauty, and myth in the digital age, James A. Reeves began researching and writing about grief following the death of his parents. Trained as an interactive designer, his work often addresses the relationship between the image and philosophy. His first book, The Road to Somewhere: An American Memoir, was published by W. W. Norton. Since 2004, he has taught courses in philosophy, the history of art, and the politics of design at Bard Early College, Parsons School of Design, and Pratt Institute.

Selected essays about grief: