The Armory Show 2014 is particularly entertaining for the number of selfie-inducing artworks glittered throughout the massive 208,000 sq. ft. exhibition space at Pier 92/94 in New York City. Gleaming works of polished steel and chrome have been increasingly prominent in art fairs, perhaps most obviously with Rirkrit Tiravanija’s mirrored ping-pong table at NYEHAUS during Basel 2008, but the sheer abundance of literal reflections at this year’s Armory speaks true of what undeniably catches the busy fair goer’s eyes these days. From Olafur Eliasson’s triangular mirrors with frosted tips at i8 Gallery to Iván Navarro’s one-way mirrored neon boxes at Galerie Daniel Templon, the Armory Show reminds individuals to take a moment to reflect inwardly before returning to the sea of engulfing works found in over 200 exhibiting galleries from 29 countries.
Pictured is Korean artist Hyungkoo Lee‘s series of photographs and wearable sculptures known as The Objectuals. The series, dominated by a helmet-like object, merges the worlds of sociology and biology into a strange and unnerving mix. Lee’s ‘helmet’ contains spaces for interchangeable lenses which can alternately emphasize or minimize various facial features. The lenses can produce disturbingly exaggerated facial expressions, faces that are cartoonishly demure or aggressive. Lee’s series underscores the body’s important role in social life and everyday flows of power. See more images from Hyunkoo Lee’s series after the jump.
I can only imagine the surprise and disorientation of coming upon a piece created by Leandro Erlich by chance, without warning. Approaching the work, familiar with the Argentinian born artist, one suddenly becomes suspicious of reality, not so trusting of what your senses are reporting. Whether it’s a floating windowsill at the end of a ladder, an elevator stuck between floors in the middle of an art gallery, or a seemingly filled pool that allows viewers to walk around and within it, Erlich uses preconceptions of space to turn expectations on their head. Erlich has been creating such artwork since the late 1990′s, these four installations just a small sampling of his mind-bending practice. See more of Leandro Erlich’s installations after the jump.
One might look at Texan fashion designer Enid Almanza’s creations with perplexity, wondering how one could possibly wear such garments. But for Almanza, practical wearability isn’t the point. The designer creates sculptural accessories, dresses and shoes using found objects. Large and ornamental, his pieces are conglomerates of pre-existing forms, absorbing silverware, knickknacks and metal architectural embellishments into baroque arrangements intended to transform the human body. Almanza’s styling complements his otherworldly accoutrements. He recently collaborated with photographer Cameron Durham on an editorial photo shoot entitled “Beautiful Decay.” Wearing his latest collection, the models look like futuristic divas engaging in occult rituals set in a timeless space that simultaneously channels 3000 BCE and AD.
“All the world is yours…” reads one of the 200 drawings in Yoshitomo Nara’s latest exhibition at LA’s Blum & Poe Gallery, which opened last Saturday. Nara’s solo exhibition is his seventh with the gallery, featuring a vast selection of his signature child characters in a new world of experimental materials. At the heart of the exhibition is an untapped medium for the artist: larger than life bronze sculptures. Cast from hand-sculpted clay models, the busts possess an unearthly quality in their rough interpretation of Nara’s youthful heroes. Read more after the jump.
Joo Lee Kang works with ink. She creates portraits of animals: incredibly detailed, Audubon- or Durer-like. They’re so precious and — dare I say? — cuddly that you want to pet them. It’s not the medium that’s unique here: ink has been around for centuries. Nor is it the subject matter. Animals rendered in ink have figured as subject matter since at least the time of ancient Greece and before that, in caves. What’s unique is that Kang uses a ballpoint pen to transport the ink to the paper. Here, a pen by any other name- Biro, Bic — would work as well. Read more after the jump.