Stack This Press Release Until Its 9 Feet Tall
Modernity gives birth to phenomena that are difficult to articulate, not least of which is a kind of faith in the direct relationship between phenomena and their articulation. This is just to say “bear with me”.
We talked about Brancusi’s Endless Column, that big knotty extrusion which seems to grow right out of history. But we could just as easily reverse the direction of force (think Walter De Maria’s Vertical Earth Kilometer). Taken together there is a kind of dipping. A piston like motion which, vis a vis time, constitutes the central motor of an artistic practice.
Rochelle Goldberg’s Dead-end, Infinite. is all trajectory and trace, or maybe a trace of trajectory. It makes me think of those dangling donuts of dust that cartoon rocket ships leave in their wake. But then again it is so stubbornly present. It feels like it will be here for ages, experiencing a different kind of trajectory, a different kind of dust. It plods along the path from art to archeology beginning its accumulation of dust -to say nothing of its gravitas- in the studio and never looking back. The viewer, a black jean wearing connoisseur, transforms into a scientist in a futuristic Hazamat suit.
Like Dead-end, Infinite. Elaine Cameron-Weir’s piece points in two directions at once. Those stainless steel racing stripes are like the stem of an arrow without the head or tail. Our attention is directed downward and I cant help but suspect that its feet are very charged. Lets ask Bataille: “Although within the body blood flows in equal quantities from high to low and from low to high, there is a bias in favor of that which elevates itself, and human life is erroneously seen as an elevation.” Cameron-Weir has given these feet “an exceptionally burlesque value.”1
I knew it. Those feet could star in a pervy Youtube video. The sculpture seems to ask “Is there a space for me between the ionic and the yonic?”
Speaking of weird spaces how about Robin Cameron’s Monument to Pedagogy? It is rife with the classic signifier’s of the classroom: the books, the blackboard the… orange? An apples to oranges comparison machine. It is nonsense in the best sense. I smell the outdoors in its precarious logic. The nowhere of recess, of finding a dead animal, or a piece of litter in the outfield. It seems to live in the stolen temporality one gets by playing hooky. Perhaps this sculpture is a descendent of the school of fictive formalism begun by Tom Sawer, that trickster practitioner of the inkwell pigtail drip painting and the serial whitewash monochrome.
At the time I’m writing this there is no title for this exhibition. That seems fine the show being comprised of 3 capital I’s. Do they really constitute an I? Perhaps an Other? If you think you know look again, this time with the other eye.
Sebastian Black, 2012
1 Georges Bataille, The Big Toe, Visions of Excess: Selected Writings, 1927-1939, ed. Allan Stoekl (University Of Minnesota Press, 1985) 20, 22.