Tag Archives: New York

Do Ho Suh: Home Within Home

This Saturday I went to Lehman Maupin Gallery to see Do Ho Suh’s Home Within Home a delightful show that combined two of my childhood passions, art and overly decorated dollhouses.  Entering adolescence, my love of dollhouses faded as my commitment to art blossomed.  If you knew me before middle school, you are aware of my extremely large, messy, interior decorated dollhouse where I spent countless afternoons parading my Barbie collection.  That is why I was pleasantly amused by Do Ho Suh’s exhibition and especially the sculpture Fallen Star.

The highly detailed house is split in half, displaying impressive amounts of craftsmanship.  The bifurcated home shows humorous details, like a cut turkey in an oven and a sullen teenage boy’s lair.  What is quaint about the home is that the interior mimics real furniture from the Ikea catalog.

 

The interior of the home is destroyed in certain areas, because of the surprising detail that the viewer finds when circling the sculpture.  In the back of the home is a traditional Korean house smashed into the back.  A parachute extends out of the back of the Korean home. This sculpture recalls obvious metaphors of cultural identity and struggle to sustain a Korean American identity.  While these over arching themes are not new to Do Ho Suh’s work, the large-scale representation is an impressive step forward in craftsmanship for his body of work.

Do Ho Suh standing in front of Fallen Star

Home Within Home at the Lehman Maupin Gallery closed Saturday.

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Leonardo Erlich: Two Different Tomorrows

Leonardo Erlich’s Two Different Tomorrows confronts gallery visitors about ordinary spaces.   Based conceptually around the idea of different time zones and spatial disorientation, Erlich uses the form of the elevator to explore what the artist calls a “shifting sense of reality.”  The show consisted of 5 large installations and sculptures.

 

The highlight of the exhibition is Elevator Maze,  which consists of grid of mock elevator interiors.  The elevator doors are open, which allow the viewer to step inside the interior.  In each individual elevator interior,  the viewer has the illusion of standing inside a mirrored space (because the left and right  walls have mirrors).  The viewer doesn’t register that the immediate reflections on the left and right are in fact real spaces until another person walks into the sculpture. The piece reveals an interesting tension between technology and illusion.  The repetition in the mirrors is like an ode to the gridded repetition of Minimalist sculptures.

For Example:

Erlich, Elevator Maze, 2011

Another piece that created a disorienting allusion was a simulation of the interior of an elevator shaft.   The installation called Elevator Shaft tilted the vertical structure on its side.  This gives the viewer the feeling of physically walking down the walls towards the top of a moving elevator.   The realistic installation proved to be the most realistic out of all of the Erlich art works.

Erlich, Elevator Shaft, 2011

The show is an ambitious exploration of spatial experience,  but there is also a poinient tension between high and low technology. In the sculpture, Stuck Elevator, Erlich created a fully realistic replica of an elevator complete with an submerged interior elevator chamber.  However,  the illusion was ruined by the painted panel on top of the open door.  The painted panel revealed the pulleys and gears of the elevator,  but appeared neither realistic nor convincing.  Also,  instead of using a real video of the clouds in the piece, Double Skylight (The Clouds Story) the hyper perfect clouds were created in aftereffects.

Erlich, Stuck Elevator, 2011

Leonardo Erlich’s show Two Different Tomorrows closed this Saturday at Sean Kelly Gallery.

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