On View: Alex Da Corte’s “Die Hexe” at Luxembourg & Dayan

by Soojin ChangPosted on

In Alex Da Corte’s latest exhibition “Die Hexe,” the comedy of his sculptures turns heartbreakingly grim. His new work is housed together in a dreamlike installation that engulfs Luxembourg & Dayan’s three-story townhouse in New York’s Upper East Side.

A bellman greets viewers in a dark, violet entrance, suggesting to look through a prismatic peephole into a door that remains shut. The sink visible inside the impossible room is by Robert Gober, whose work, as well as those of Bjarne Melgaard and Mike Kelley, is treated as one of Da Corte’s many found objects – which include items as mundane as Swiffer sticks, candle wax, and a dog harness.

Up the first flight of stairs, a self-squeaking wooden rocking chair faces Kelley’s stuffed vermin in an orange-knit room. Each section of the townhouse continues unfalteringly, floor to ceiling, with this sickening pop appeal. Every step of the show is saturated with memory – art historical, cinematic, cultural, or personal – from the shoddy vinyl walls making homage to the bodegas of Da Corte’s current neighborhood in Philly, to the last room’s reflective tiles dedicated to the ground where Kurt Cobain lay last. The exhibition progresses following the logic of an uneasy dream: a stripper pole adorned with a Razr flip phone stands beside a mural reproduction of Nicolas Poussin’s Midas and Bacchus.

“Die Hexe” is Da Corte’s largest exhibition to date. His first museum solo exhibition is set to open in March 2016 at Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (Mass MoCA)

“Die Hexe” is on view at Luxembourg & Dayan through April 11.

All photos by Alejandra Sabillon unless otherwise noted.

Photo by John Bernardo, Courtesy of Luxembourg & Dayan, New York.

Photo by John Bernardo, Courtesy of Luxembourg & Dayan, New York.

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