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George Condo's Jesters Opens January 28 at Gallery Met

Condo has created a large banner, based on the "Jester 9" drawing from the show, which will hang on the Met façade through mid-February. He has previously designed banners in conjunction with the Met's productions of Donizetti's La Fille du Régiment and the Baroque pastiche The Enchanted Island.

Dodie Kazanjian, curator of Gallery Met since it opened its doors in 2006, thought Condo would be the perfect artist for a show tied toRigoletto, with its central, tragic jester.

"George is one of those rare artists whose work is infused with disturbing humor-he cuts deep while making us laugh," Kazanjian said.

Gallery Met, located in the south lobby of the opera house, is open to the public Mondays through Fridays from 6 p.m. to the end of the last intermission and Saturdays from noon to the end of the evening performance's last intermission. Admission is free and no appointments are required. Gallery Met is closed on Sundays.

Rigoletto premieres January 28 in a new production conducted by Michele Mariotti and directed by Michael Mayer in his Met debut. The cast includes Ċ½eljko Lu?i? as Rigoletto, Diana Damrau as Gilda, Piotr Beczala as the Duke, Oksana Volkova in her Met debut as Maddalena, and Štefan Kocán as Sparafucile. Mayer's staging moves the opera's tragic events from a decadent 16th-century Italian court to the glitzy, depraved setting of the Las Vegas strip circa 1960.

For more information on the Met's contemporary visual arts initiatives, which are organized by Dodie Kazanjian, please visitwww.metopera.org/gallerymet.

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