Tag Archives: Sculpture

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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WPA Biennial: Options 2011

The Washington Project for the Arts presents it’s biennial “Options.”   The exhibition features young artists from the Baltimore/Washington DC area and functions as a survey of unrecognized talent.  Stefanie Fedor is the curator.  The show included a impressive range of media including,  sculpture,  drawing, audio, mix media, and video.

Heather Boaz, Jacket and Shoes

Heather Boaz,  Dress, 2011

One of the most impressive offerings in the show is by the Baltimore based artist Heather Boaz.  Her artworks Jacket and Shoes combine traditional clothing with metal hardware.  The wearable sculptures brings a new perspective to the dialog between domestic objects, clothing, and femininity.  In Shoes,  the metal handles are fixed to the soles rendering the boots useless, pushing the object into a more sculptural form.

Artemis Herber, Stems, 2011

Artemis Herber constructed two sculptures Rusty Shelters and Stems.  The large cardboard constructions contain multiple parts.  The sculptures have smooth and simple lines, but their large size makes the viewer feel diminutive.  Especially in Rusty Shelters,  the combination of color with the shape and quality of the cardboard created a irresistible tactility that is rare is a cardboard sculpture.

Artemis Herber,  Rusty Shelters, 2011

Jimmy Miracle shows a group of sculptures,  but I am especially taken with his piece Meditations.  While the larger work Beam is derivative of other artists,  the small scale containment makes Meditations a original statement.  The clear plastic containers which house the multicolored string,  provide a reflective surface and allow different perspectives of the string to reveal themselves.

“Options 2011” is on view in Washington DC until October 29th.

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Olek: Astor Place Cube

Here is a video of one of my personal favorite’s Olek crocheting the cube at Astor Place.

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Nick Cave “For Now” at Mary Boone Gallery

Confession:  I am obsessed with Nick Cave.

Nick Cave delivers more iconic “Soundsuits” in a new installation called “For Now” at the Mary Boone gallery in Chelsea.  The suits are scaled to the artist’s body and are wearable sculpture.   This installation is particularly enjoyable because Cave continues to explore alternative materials.  The construction of the suits separate into two categories: small interwoven sticks and gaudy ephemera from a sequined childhood nightmare.

The most impressive aspect of the exhibit is the fine tuned craftsmanship.  The overwhelming materials create a sensory overload.   Despite the trendiness of themes of shamanism within contemporary art, Nick Cave presents a truly breathtaking installation.

 

“For Now” is in conjunction with an exhibition at the Jack Shainman Gallery called “Ever-After.”

The exhibition at Mary Boone is on view until October 22nd.

Expect a comparison to the show at Jack Shainman Gallery next week on Monitor.

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Richard Serra: Junction/Cycle

Richard Serra’s show “Junction/Cycle” at Gagosian Gallery displays familiar curved steel plates and smooth curves.   Unlike the underwhelming drawing exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum this summer (Richard Serra’s Drawings: A Retrospective), “Junction/Cycle” reveals the continuation of the sculptures art audiences love.   The gallery is dominated by two oversized sculptures, expanding outward from Serra’s distinctive Torqued Ellipses.   Each of the sculptures had multiple pathways, entrances, and exists.  Unlike many of the Serra sculptures I am familiar with, the two sculptures allow the viewer to choose his/her own path through the work.  The element of choice allows Serra to organize the movement of people around the gallery space, but allows a personalized encounter with the sculptures.

Junction and Cycle almost invite the viewer to weave in and out of the sculpture.  The welcoming attitude of the sculptures is a marked difference from Serra’s more abrasive early work, for example Tilted Arc.  The rust of the steel made the sculptures appear more tactile, less cold.  The color of the rust provided the viewer with a less sterile experience.

The sculptures were so gigantic that they dwarfed the cavernous Gagosian Gallery in Chelsea.  The ceiling hovered above the sculptures making them seem more claustrophobic than usual, making me think that Serra based the height on the gallery space.  Despite the cramped quarters, it was a treat to see Serra’s new offerings.

Richard Serra’s “Junction/Cycle” will be at Gagosian Gallery until November 26th.

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