Tag Archive | Sculptures

Adrián Villar Rojas’ The Theater of Disappearance On The Roof of The Met

Theater of Dissappearance
All Photos By Gail

The cooler, more inclement weather that comes with Fall is slowly encroaching, which means that the annual Roof Garden exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is about close. So, if you’ve not yet made a visit to see Adrián Villar Rojas’ fantastic installation, The Theater of Disappearance, you have until October 29th, 2017 to check out (weather permitting of course) this unique exhibit that strongly resembles the post-apocalyptic aftermath of a very fancy dinner party.

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

For this site specific-installation, Argentian artist Adrián Villar Rojas (b. 1980) used the Museum itself as his subject material; drawing on objects in the collection and the history of collecting practices. To realize the extensive work, the artist immersed himself in The Met, and with its staff over many months, held conversations with the curators, conservators, managers, and technicians — 3-D scanning and imaging experts —  across every department, who all contributed to the realization of this installation. Conceived as a holistic environment, The Theater of Disappearance transfers the space of the Roof Garden into a performative diorama.

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Sixteen black and white sculptures incorporate nearly one hundred detailed replicas of objects from The Met’s collection – selected from a wide variety of time periods and cultures, and reconfigured as amalgamations, The Theater of Disappearance encompasses thousands of years of artistic production over several continents and cultures, and fuses them with facsimiles of contemporary human figures as well as furniture, animals, cutlery, and food. Each object — whether a 1,000-year-old decorative plate or a human hand — is rendered in the same black or white material and coated in a thin layer of dust.

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Architecture is folded into the fabric of the work. Villar Rojas’s intervention includes two radical new flooring systems – one checkerboard and the other a reflective metallic surface – as well as a redesigned bar, benches, new plantings, and an extended pergola overhead, creating dramatic setting that transforms the panoramic views of Central Park and the Manhattan skyline into theatrical backdrops for the installation.

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

The total effect of sculptures and environment is a dazzling, disorienting scene where all senses of the interpretive history associated with Museum objects has vanished, making way for and alternative history for art.

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

This project is dedicated to the memory of Ronald Street, The Met’s first head of digital imaging. Please enjoy more photos, which I shot during two separate visits this past summer!

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Dissappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

Theater of Disappearance

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Pink Thing of The Day: Les Pommes d’Adam By Franz West

Les Pommes d’Adam
All Photos By Gail

During my semi-annual weekend escape to the Berkshires, I was able to finally make a trip to Mass MoCA, where we accidentally discovered the Franz West group of sculptures known as Les Pommes d’Adam (Adam’s Apple), late in the day while we were trying to find our car. Being surprised by these sculptures definitely allowed us to end our thoroughly enjoyable visit on a very high note!

Les Pommes d’Adam

Les Pommes d’Adam is rough-hewn and made of basic materials: metal, epoxy, paint, and concrete. The four pink biomorphic totems, each standing at approximately 25 feet, are at once crude in shape, yet highly finished.

Les Pommes d’Adam

 Les Pommes d’Adam was, um, erected at Mass MoCA in April of 2014 after previously being installed in Paris, France, in close proximity to the Vendôme Column, on top of which stands a statue of Napoléon Bonaparte in Roman garb.

Les Pommes d’Adam

Les Pommes d’Adam

Paparazzi Dogs By Gillie and Marc, Greenwich Village NYC

Paparazzi Dogs
All Photos By Gail

We were having a divine Italian lunch at Olio e Piu when I glanced out the window and spotted — on the tiny traffic island wedged between the cross streets of Sixth Avenue, Greenwich Avenue, and Christopher Street, which is formally known as Ruth E. Wittenberg Triangle — what looked liked a group of Dogs with Cameras (#dogswithcameras). Once we finished our delicious meal, we went outside to investigate. This is where we found the four Paparazzi Dogs.

Paparazzi Dogs with Jamie

The Paparazzi Dogs, by husband and wife team Gillie and Marc, have traveled from Australia to Greenwich Village, a place that hosts thousands of photo shoots each year. Gillie and Marc invite you to let the Paparazzi Dogs take your photo here, and become your own celebrity!

Mary and Jaimie and Paparazzi Dogs

Dog owners Jaimie and Mary show the Paparazzi Dogs some love!

Pap Dogs

The Paparazzi Dogs are brought to you by the NYC Department of Transportation and the Village Alliance. No Word on how long they’ll be on view so get your selfies now!

Paparrazi Dogs
Smile and Say Cheese!

Subway Art By Daniel Sinclair: Fast Track and Speedwheels

Daniel Sinclair Fast Track 1991
Fast Track, 1991 (All Photos By Gail)

Once each week, I have an appointment in the vicitiny of 45th Street and Madison Avenue. which gives me the opportunity to walk the length of the long passageway between the S shuttle to Times Square and 4, 5, and 6 lines, under Grand Central Terminal: an excellent shortcut I love to use to avoid excess time on the congested streets of this heavily foot-trafficked neighborhood.

Fast Track Detail
Fast Track, Detail

It is at either end of this passageway that you will find Dan Sinclair’s Fast Track and Speedwheels; two mixed-media wall-mounted assemblages crafted from bright metallic sections that include wavy aluminum sheets, steel wheels, brass disks, copper springs and wires. Fast Track, see in the two photos above, is installed closest to the S shuttle to Times Square platform, adjacent to the tracks.

Fast Track Detail
Fast Track, Detail (Above and Below)

Fast Track Detail

Speedwheels
Speedwheels

Mounted high overheard on the wall at the end of the passageway that’s closest to the 4, 5, and 6 lines, you will find the expansive Speedwheels installation. It’s a bit challenging to photograph in full, because there is a support beam about ten feet in front of it

Speedwheels By Daniel Sinclair
Speedwheels, Left Side Detail

The art-deco shapes and various turning wheels, spinning gears and pistons interpret the speed, energy and train travel imagery into this relief sculpture, and add to the aura of the location, below one of America’s premiere rail stations.

Speedwheels By Daniel Sinclair
Speedwheels, Right Side Detail

Sinclair explains, “I want my sculpture to make people think of the power of the engines that drive the trains, the speed and efficiency of them. The sculptures also reflect the architectural elements of Times Square and the Art Deco glamour of Radio City Music Hall.”

John McCracken at David Zwirner

Installation View
Installation View Left to Right: Galaxy, Rhythm, Flare. (All Photos By Gail )

Hey, do you enjoy the work of legendary minimalist artist John McCracken? I sure do. According to the obituary published in the New York Times when McCracken passed away in 2011 at the age of 76, “he was one of the few artists affiliated with the [Minimalist] movement who did not object to its name, and who made most of his work by hand: sanding and polishing his enamel, lacquer or resin surfaces until their colors achieved a flawless and reflective perfection.” Right now, David Zwirner Gallery, who has represented McCracken’s art for two decades, is hosting an exciting collection of the artist’s late career works, whose monochromatic, highly reflective surfaces are inspired in part by the West Coast’s car culture. Sigh. If you are in any way a fan, you will not want to miss this exhibit.

Flare, 2008
Flare, (2008)

The exhibition presents key examples from three discrete groups of work — leaning multi-part wall pieces, wall-mounted multi-part reliefs, and freestanding columns — that McCracken created outside of his iconic planks. On view are a selection of the artist’s Beam works, each comprising multiple tall narrow components that lean against the wall, first exhibited in his 2008 solo presentation at David Zwirner.

Installation View
Installation View: Space is on the far left

Song, 2008
Song

Some multi-part works, such as Space (2008), consist of a rhythmic combination of an array colors, here blue and green; while others like Song (2008) explore tonal, more subtle variations within a single color, in this case red. Still others are monochromatic.

Galaxy 2008
Galaxy (2008)

Rhythm, 2008
Rhythm, (2008)

Fire (Left) 2007
Left: Fire,  Right: Light

Titles are likewise employed as a pictorial metaphor in McCracken’s lesser-known wall reliefs, such as Fire (2007), created for documenta 12 in 2007, and Light (2004), which exist in the interstices of painting and sculpture.

Chord 2004

Above and Below: Chord (2004)

Chord 2004

Blue Arc, Red Mara, Black Wave, Green Siskiyou
Blue Arc, Red Mara, Black Wave, Green Siskiyou

In the front gallery you’ll find a grouping of four eight-foot tall freestanding columns, arranged in a configuration similar to the artist’s 2004 exhibition at the gallery, exploring the phenomenological relationship between work, viewer, and architecture through their outsized stature.

Blue Arc, Red Mara, Black Wave, Green Siskiyou

Reflection off of Wave, 2004
Reflection off of Siskiyou (1988)

Sculptures By John McCracken’s will be on Exhibit Through April 15th, 2017 at David Zwirner Gallery, Located at 537 West 20th Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.

Signage

Light (Rear Wall)
Light (2004), Rear Wall

Iván Navarro’s Mute Parade at Paul Kasmin Gallery

Impenetrable Room
Impenetrable Room By Iván Navarro All Photos By Gail

Paul Kasmin Gallery’s Tenth Avenue space is currently hosting Mute Parade, an exhibit of light installations by  Chilean-born artist Iván Navarro, for his second solo show with the gallery. Mute Parade transforms multiple gallery rooms into a synesthetic environment continuing Navarro’s ongoing use of light, sound, and language to engage with issues of power, migration, and propaganda.

First Gallery Installation View

Upon entering the gallery, the viewer is faced with a series of new works by the artist including Tuning (2015), a pyramid of six towering drums.

Tuning

Navarro combines the drums with mirrors and the words High, Tone, Tune, Bass, Mute, and Deaf to create a visual representation idea of sound (or noise) while at the same time removing and negating the original function of the instruments. This is a way of “playing a song” without making any sound.

MEBE

None of What You Hear

Center Room Installation View

In the center of the adjacent room, there are two freestanding 6-foot diameter drums that incorporate neon, LED lights, mirrors, and electricity. Circular texts written in light repeat the words KickBack and KnockKnockKnock – giving the appearance of an endless loop. Throughout the exhibition, the new works employ silence and stillness to create an uncanny perception of sound and movement and to explore the relationship between seeing and hearing.

Impenetrable Room

In the last room gallery, the viewer enters a labyrinth of four 6 x 6 foot structures that together make up the Impenetrable Room (2016). This new body of work co-opts the materials and format of portable “road cases,” which are customarily used to transport and protect musical instruments. Refitting the cases with mirrors and neon light, Navarro transforms these static objects into deep spaces that appear to recede towards infinity.

Impenetrable Room

In this installation, undulating lines of green neon diagrammatically echo the propagation of sound waves through a medium. Silent and monolithic, these self-contained rooms resonate with unspoken narrative power.

Read You Loud Unclear

Black and white paper squares are scattered across the floors of both galleries. The words Read You and Loud Unclear, printed on opposite sides of the cards, call attention to the disjunction between the visual and auditory aspects of communication. Informed by the aesthetics and rhythms of military parades, the exhibition contemplates the juxtaposed feelings of celebration and intimidation that martial music is intended to create.

Tuning Alternate View

Iván Navarro’s Mute Parade will be on Exhibit Through December 23rd, 2016 at Paul Kasmin Gallery, located at 293 Tenth Avenue (Corner of 27th Street) in the Chelsea Gallery District.

Impenetrable Room

Changing Subjects By Elmgreen & Dragset at Flag Art Foundation

Untitled
Untitled, 2011 By Elmgreen & Dragset (All Photos By Gail)

The Flag Art Foundation is currently hosting Changing Subjects, a solo exhibition by internationally acclaimed Scandinavian artists Elmgreen & Dragset. Changing Subjects, designed by the artists, presents new and existing works from the duo’s twenty-year-long collaboration that address existential issues linked to identity, sexuality, and mortality, as well as an examination of social value systems and the expectations that surround them.

Changing Subjects investigates the multiple meanings of the word “subject” as a noun. In grammatical terms, the subject can be a noun functioning as one of the main components of a clause, making it the element about which the rest of the clause is predicated. In turn, the predicate is the part of a sentence or clause that expresses what is said of the subject on its own. In the context of Changing Subjects, the subject of each work exists independently of the others, yet when viewed together, they shift positions, creating a complex interconnection between the autonomous works.

Go Go Go
Go, Go, Go!

The works in the exhibition, ranging in date of creation from 1998 to 2016, collectively guide visitors on a non-linear journey through various life stages. However, the sculptures and installations do not mark momentous occasions; on the contrary, they show introspective, unspectacular moments, by way of a figurative representation, by the use of a minimalist symbolic language, or by employing the actual materials to which they refer. Even when a lifelike human form is not shown, presence is implied through absence. The repeated use of an antiseptic material like stainless steel underscores a sense of a clinical study and evokes solitary feelings of abandonment.

Modern Moses
Modern Moses

Among the works in the exhibition on the 9th floor is Modern Moses, 2006, a wax figure depicting a sleeping baby in a carrycot at the food of an ATM machine; and The Experiment (2011) a sculpture of a little boy in front of a mirror wearing his mother’s lipstick and high heels.

The Experiment

Powerless Structures Fig 19
Powerless Structures, Fig. 19

An early readymade by the artist duo, Powerless Structures, Fig. 19, (1998), consists of two pairs of Calvin Klein underwear inside faded Levi’s jeans lying on the floor, as if someone has just undressed and dropped them.

Side Effects

Side Effects (2015), fills the 10th floor with an installation of hand-blown glass vases filled with the actual pastel-colored pigments used to coat the latest generation of HIV medicines. The title refers to the physiological effects of the life-saving medication, as well as the resulting decrease in media attention that has followed these medical advances.

Side Effects

The exhibition also includes a site-specific sculpture on its outdoor terrace, overlooking the Hudson River.

Watching

Watching (2016) is a new, life-size sculpture of a man on a lifeguard stand, likely more voyeur than rescuer, looking out over the Hudson River with monoculars. Made out of stainless steel, the polished surface mirrors and distorts the surroundings, and shifts the perspective on who and what is being watched.

Changing Subjects By Elmgreen & Dragset will be on Exhibit Through December 17th, 2016 at Flag Art Foundation, Located at 545 West 25th Street, 9th Floor, in the Chelsea Gallery District.

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