23 April 2006

Chelsea Dump

It was a good day for sculpture in Chelsea:

*Matthew Barney at Gladstone in some ways really rocked. More on that later.

*Fischli and Weiss at Matthew Marks... those drawings/C-prints were a little befuddling, but rubber stumps! Who can't love rubber stumps? I liked that they were a mystery, that they just looked like charred and petrified wood, but that they had this confusing heaviness. Why so much weight here? Wood gets really light when you burn it. Nice.

*Shane Ruth at Freight+Volume=sweet gentle woodlove. Craft is tenderness, and I like tenderness. Now really fuck me next time. All that care needs a foil.

*Tobias Rehberger's American Traitor Bitch was a little Ikea, but massive. I like massive.

Also noteworthy: Nathalie Djurberg at Zach Feuer. The consensus on Freeman Street was that Feuer's last show was a case of misdirected talent--bad painting from a guy who should be making collage or sculpture. Djurberg makes it all better. She knows how to play with craft and make bad look good. I wonder about the tactic of young woman artists using sex and sexism and being fucked. It's so American Apparel. So accepting of the status quo, so passive, so titilating. So strangely conservative. Alex McQuilkin and Nathalie Djurberg do wind up riding the Helen Gurley Brown train down the Phyllis Schafly track.

But whatever, at least Djurberg is having a much better time and is more generous than McQuilkin.


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