Still Life Is No Life
Nicole Klagsbrun is pleased to present, Still Life Is No Life, a solo exhibition of sculptures and photographs by Sean Bluechel, on view from March 1 - April 6, 2013.
Trying to capture the moment before a collapse—that of meaning or of physical structure, of systems or function—these sculptures both attack and seduce the eye. Their fragility makes them seem as if assembled with quick intelligence, by someone whose knowledge extends to planetary movement and cosmic magnetic fields. In their precariousness, they allow a dynamic that suspends hierarchy and hovers beyond singular meaning, fluctuating between stupidity and carelessness to wisdom and the DNA of thought.
Function and logic yield to a rough and dysfunctional sensibility: the sculptures all play on the shape of vessels or containers that hold objects—the very basic and ancient human need to arrange, contain, sort out and beautify, from Sumerian vessels to modern-day Tupperware.
Along with the objects, we are confronted with a series of photographs, most sourced online, that uncannily resemble not only the sculptural arrangements, but Bluechel's past photo series of the late 1990s, such as "Purse Sculptures," "JoJo," and "Breaking and Entering." In these series, the artist improvised sculptural arrangements using items found in a woman's purse or a stranger's home; these witty compositions were then casually shot and presented as flat works. The current series of "Drunk Photos" bump against the loaded iconographies of sexuality, race, gender and shamanistic artifacts, and are all perhaps made by drunken frat boys attempting to have crude fun. Taken together, the two bodies of work function formally and conceptually to intensify the forces of connection: small to large, giant to microcosmic, the abject to the profound. The energy surrounding the work carves out a transitional space that constantly shifts between the psychological and the physical.
This Sean Bluechel's second solo exhibition at Nicole Klagsbrun. He lives and works in New York.