Artist: Lucy Skaer
Venue: Murray Guy, New York
Exhibition Title: Sticks & Stones
Date: January 10 – February 21, 2015
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of Murray Guy, New York
“It was all so nearly alike it must be different and it is different, it is natural that if everything is used and there is a continuous present and a beginning again and again if it is all so alike it must be simply different and everything different was the natural way of creating it then.” – Gertrude Stein, Composition as Explanation
Sticks & Stones poses questions about the material nature of things and the relation of matter to representation. The exhibition comprises a ‘twin’ form that has been copied into a series of different mediums. The original object (made up of materials, prototypes and samples from the artist’s former NewYork studio) is replicated into a new copy in a different material. Each sculpture is a copy of its predecessor, not of the ‘original.’The nature of the sculpture is translated into a new embodiment, a metamorphosis of form.
The series is a pathway towards abstraction. Copies made of ceramic, marble, aluminum, and veneered wood, are lined up one after another, each replicating its predecessor as closely as possible without denying its individual materiality. No images are used as intermediaries. Each copy is crafted by hand and eye from its precursor. While the discrete sculptures never fully detaches from being a representation of its predecessor, abstraction exists as a tension.
This concatenation of objects and materials is not intended to signify a specific historical period or tradition, but each represent a time period and methodology that is anachronistic. Still, the complex history of the Belizean mahogany from which the original pair are made, finds a place within the narrative of both the original sculpture as well as its sequential neighbors: the trees were first logged for export by the British, accidentally sank in riverbeds during transportation, and lay forgotten in the mud for over a century.
Sticks & Stones embodies paradoxical strategies of transformation and sequence, recalling Gertrude Stein’s logic: “Everything is the same except composition and as the composition is different and always going to be different everything is not the same.”
Link: Lucy Skaer at Murray Guy