Jan 25, 2007

..."like outraged goblins railing at humanity's profligate filth" [LINK]

R.C. Baker of the Village Voice reviews Charles Long's showing at New York's Tanya Bonakdar Gallery:

These umber-tinted photos of blue heron and white egret droppings scattered across the concrete conduits of the Los Angeles River are serendipitous wonders. While they occasionally catch the majestic birds in flight, it is the ghostly skeins of excrement (sometimes juxtaposed against the artist's own attenuated shadow) that deliver a revelatory shock: Shit can be gorgeous! But wait -- there's more: Long has cobbled together colossal plaster and papier-maché sculptures based on the splatter patterns. The tentacles of these dirty-white, three-dimensional apparitions are embedded with broken glass, shredded plastic, and other industrial crap; sometimes these haunting creatures (as anorexic as Giacometti's existential wraiths) are topped with bulbous nodules and loom up like outraged goblins railing at humanity's profligate filth. Overshadowing any content however, is Long's knack for anthropomorphizing nature while retaining the primordial beauty of even her basest elements.
I don't quite get why they'd rail at humanity's filth when they're the ones leaving poop all over the place, but perhaps I lack imagination.

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